"Pray and let God worry" - Martin Luther
Life has a funny way of making things difficult.
From jobs, to family, to finances, to relationships, and to the economy, there always seems to be something unsettling happening near us or to us. What are we to think of this? What should our response be to the seemingly endless attack of worry and misfortune?
As Christians, we should look first and foremost to the Bible to find what is true to life and what our response should be. When it comes to problems, trials, suffering, or any combination of burdens in this life, the Bible has plenty to say about the topic, but here are just a few references to meditate on this week:
- James 1:2-5: "Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.
- John 16:33: "In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." [Jesus speaking]
- Matthew 11:28-30: "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” [Jesus speaking]
Whether you like it or not, the Bible affirms the reality that you will have problems. However, the good news is that Jesus has ultimately overcome the world and in Him you can find comfort, peace, hope, and a firm foundation when the trials of life come.
The real question is this: when trouble comes who or what do you turn to?
We all faces trials that appear and feel like mountains standing in our way but the goal is to cling to God and trust Him through any season of difficulty. Pastor Bill Hybels said in his book "Too Busy Not to Pray" that "faith comes from looking at God, not the mountain. Don't spend much time describing the mountain, He knows what it is. Instead, focus your attention on the Mountain Mover - the God who is full of power, glory, faithfulness. Then, following His leading, begin walking in faith and watch the mountain move!"
PRAYER CHALLENGE THIS WEEK: TURN YOUR PROBLEMS INTO PRAYER
1. Read Psalm 55
- Notice how David, the writer of this Psalm, declares his trouble to God (v.1-15) yet is able to confidently rest in the character of God for his rescue and help (v.16-19). Finally, notice his encouragement directly to us today in v. 22!
- What is the timeless truth of this passage?
- How does this timeless principle apply to you personally?
- How will you apply this truth to your walk with Jesus this week?
2. Stop and Reflect
- What burdens have you been carrying that you need to put down and let Jesus carry for you?
- Why do you carry these burdens that you know only Jesus should be carrying?
- What is the root cause of your worrying?
3. Turn Your Problems Into Prayer
- Take a minute, right now, and write down the biggest problems you're facing today and commit to praying regularly for these problems and letting God handle the solutions. Record in a journal the date and specifics when God answers your prayers!
- Ask Him to help you persevere. (Romans 5:1-5)
- Ask Him to strengthen your hands and your back for the trials you're facing. - Ask Him to give you His perspective of these trials and how they are shaping you into the image of Christ. (1 Peter 4:12-19)
- Take a minute and share something God is teaching you, convicting you of, or releasing you from in the House of Prayer group on The City.
- Encourage others AND be encouraged that God is with you, for you, and wants to carry your burdens for you because you are in Christ!
In the midst of trials and hardship, another powerful tool to overcome worry, fear, and doubt is reminding yourself of the timeless truths about God's faithfulness, power, and provision. Therefore, please take a listen to this song today and know that God is at work in the midst of your troubles!
You can also check out our 30 Days of Prayer Playlist on YouTube as well. Enjoy!
Praying with you this week,
Pastor Brett Ricley