Philippians 4:6 (NKJV) — 6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 

You’ve probably heard a dozen or so sermons on this scripture, as I have.  Consider this a “reminder post” of an essential Biblical exercise of faith and love, or love and faith, if you prefer that order.

We’re told not to be anxious about anything or IN anything because we can take our cares to a heavenly Father. But wait … why? We’ve become pretty good at stressing, being anxious, and worrying, so why stop practicing something we’re good at, right? I mean, when you’re good, you ARE GOOD!

When I was in school the worst case of anxiety that I had to deal with could usually be cured by stopping by the Sunoco gas station and getting a cold Mountain Dew for ten cents.  If the anxiety was peaking, I’d ask for the latest STP decal for my bicycle. All was made good.

stp367

Today, Mountain Dew is no longer ten cents and STP stickers … ?  You can’t do the dew like ya used to.

Back to my point

 Even though we don’t have to be anxious, we practice anyway. We like to quote from the Epistle of James and say that we’re “doers of the Word” but we placed an exception to this rule because we find it too easy to practice anxiousness and worry (and fear and etc.).  What we should be doing is encouraging one another to stop practicing such faithlessness in our heavenly Father and practice Philippians 4:6-7.

My wife pointed out the verse from an old hymn. Like so many of the old hymns there is a treasure that we tend to sing right through without drinking from its well.

 What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!
Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
Oh, what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer!

Back to Scripture

We know Philippians 4:6 and can probably quote it, right? We’re told to take our anxiety somewhere specific—“to God.”  When you’re worried, anxious, and doing some old-fashioned ‘fretting’:

  • Don’t take it out on your spouse or children.
  • Don’t take it to work with you.
  • Don’t throw it in with some gossip and share your downer with others; and
  • Don’t do a Flip Wilson excuse or use Adam’s excuse that he gave to God in the Garden of Eden.

Take your anxiety; fears; hopelessness; cares; worries; and heartaches TO GOD in prayer.  Take them, all of them to God.

I’ve heard people yell at the Devil about their problems. I’ve heard people dumping their complaints on others.  When we pass the blame onto someone/something else, we are throwing off our responsibilities rather than taking them on. Even if … even if … the Devil is to blame (says Flip Wilson), the scripture tells us that we are to go to God, not to the Devil, with our problems. As far as sharing your “Debbie-Downers” with others, outside of fishing for pity you’re not going to catch much on that hook. Take your troubles to the Almighty God.

BTW: I’m not saying that your troubles will go away.  They may be in your life for a purpose, perhaps to change you rather than the circumstance. But, verse 7 does hold some good news to those who lean to live out verse 6.

Philippians 4:7 (NKJV) — 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

What A Friend We Have In Jesus

What a friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!
Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
Oh, what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer!

Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged—
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful,
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness;
Take it to the Lord in prayer.

Are we weak and heavy-laden,
Cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge—
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In His arms He’ll take and shield thee,
Thou wilt find a solace there.

Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised
Thou wilt all our burdens bear;
May we ever, Lord, be bringing
All to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright, unclouded,
There will be no need for prayer—
Rapture, praise, and endless worship
Will be our sweet portion there.

If the above didn’t help, try this rebuke from Bob Newhart:

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