I’d say worrying is our first response to most uncertainties in life. Wouldn’t you? When something out of our control happens, we automatically go straight for worst-case scenarios, and all the negative “what ifs” start to flood our minds.
Worry’s most trusted companion, fear, slides in to corrode our thoughts, all while worry continues to churn our stomachs. And suddenly, we’ve forgotten every scripture that’s linked to both worry and fear. We subconsciously welcome the toxic cycle by giving it our full attention, and so it’s out with peace and in with impending doom.
What We Know About Worrying
Do you know what it means to worry? Like, the Dictionary.com description of worry? It’s this:
1.) to torment with cares, anxieties, etc.; trouble; plague.
TORMENT!? TROUBLE!? PLAGUE!?!
Come to think of it…Yes, that sounds about right. That’s exactly what it feels like when I indulge in worry.
Maybe you make up stories about what might happen in the future, overthink every detail of past events, or perhaps you truly have something stressful in your life that is causing you to worry. No matter the source, worrying can put you in a mental prison that feels impossible to escape. Instead of enjoying the present moment, your mind is elsewhere contemplating what you’ll do ~if~ that thing happens.
Worry is like a rocking chair: it gives you something to do but never gets you anywhere.
Although we know worrying is fruitless and bad for our health, so many times it seems uncontrollable. We ponder a situation thinking maybe if we try hard enough we’ll come up with a solution, or somehow be able to reason it away. That’s rarely the case though. Many times we just waste time and energy later realizing it’s all out of our control.
Why do we do it though? If we know that we serve the sovereign, almighty, God of all creation, why is our first response to worry when we think of the future and things out of our control?
What the Bible Says About Worry and Fear
The Bible is filled with a multitude of scriptures about why we shouldn’t worry or fear, so that must mean God knew we were going to struggle with it, huh?
In Matthew 6:34 Jesus plainly tells us not to worry:
Jesus himself spoke those words. That should be enough to make us push all of our worries to the side. Yet, time after time that’s exactly what we don’t do! Instead, we worry! Whhhhhhhhy?!? Perhaps it’s because we’re reading the scripture, but not really comprehending it. Or, it could be the fact that we’re just human and we don’t have the Pollyanna mindset all the time. Either way, how do we get relief from this draining dilemma? Is it even possible?
What if we change our response to those situations or valleys right when we notice them though? Can we really change our perspective when trouble shows up in our lives? Is it honestly that easy?
James 1:2 tells us to:
When trials and valleys come our way…
(which Jesus straight up tells us they will in John 16:33):
…reassuring scriptures should be the first things that come to mind. Such as:
But reading scriptures such as these don’t always make me feel better right away. They’re reassuring, of course, but sometimes I can’t seem to get out of my head and fathom them. Especially if I’m hung up on an issue that’s exceptionally challenging.
Like, James….just because you say I should count this uncertain situation or valley as joy DOES NOT make me feel better right now. Don’t get me wrong, the living Word of God is AWESOME and has helped me beyond what I can say, but sometimes when I’m in my head and in the middle of a deeeeep valley, it’s pretty tough to view it as something that’s good for me.
What’s gonna help me NOW?! What can I do to lift my spirits ASAP? How do I cast my anxieties on Jesus? How do I just let my worries go?!
And this is where I found my answer…in worship.
Worshiping God brings such peace and freedom! It’s indescribable how worshiping the one, true God extinguishes every worry imaginable.
When I worship, no longer am I focused on the cares of this world because all of my attention is directed at Him. Whether I’m singing along to my favorite worship song…or making up my own…or telling Him what a magnificent creator He is, or simply appreciating the beauty of the world around me; instantly, my mindset shifts and I’m reminded that He is the only one that matters. And the best part is, it lasts! Even after the songs are over, the Psalm is read, and I have to dive back into reality–the peace and joy linger.
If you’re a struggling child of God, just know that God is gracious. He looks at us with compassion and will help us with whatever we need.
Remember Psalm 103:13-14:
How comforting is that?!
He knows our frame. He gets it. Jesus was human. He wept. He had feelings just like us.
All the more reason to worship God. He gave us a Savior that can relate to our human feelings.
How to Worship
If you don’t really know how to worship, first off, just start talking to God. If you know you trust Him, tell Him that. Consider all that He’s done for you, all that He’s given you, and thank Him for those things. Give Him thanks for WHO He is and for the awesome fact that we can talk to Him wherever, whenever.
WHAT A PRIVILEGE TO BE ON THIS SIDE OF THE CROSS!
We’re not always going to feel like worshiping, but pushing through and worshiping anyway (even when it’s hard and all we want to do is curl up and cry) is powerful! It starts off as a distraction that will ultimately shift your focus from the problem to the Problem-Solver. And once you start worshiping, it’s hard to stop.
Throw your hands up and praise Him through it all.
It’s really THAT simple.
Here are some awesome songs to help get your worship started:
Listen to the words of these songs and do your best to block out all distractions. Just focus on who He is and how much He means to you. Worship is an intimate time with the Lord that helps us grow in our relationship with Him. Although intimate, you can worship ANYWHERE and ANYTIME. It doesn’t have to be reserved for the church-house or in your room with the door shut tight. Worship in your car, the shower, while cleaning ANY.TIME. ALL.THE.TIME. He is worthy of it and it will bring you that peace that surpasses all understanding.
Maybe worrying will always be our first response because we’re human, BUT I believe it takes seconds to flip the switch and turn that worry into worship. Both worry and worship are CHOICES. Which will you choose?
As Jesus said, we WILL have trouble in this world, but we must remember that He has overcome the world! When it comes to those moments or seasons in life when everything seems to be going wrong, resist the habit to worry and worship instead.
Remember Genesis 50:20:
Don’t lose heart. Even when you feel hopeless, press on!