Thursday, March 22, 2007

Worrying About Worry

The ads on TV have changed over the years. Many of the ads are for legal drugs. If you weren’t sick, after watching some of these ads, a person can begin to believe we must have a myriad of undiagnosed diseases. Drug manufacturers have become relentless in promoting their products. They ask questions and prompt you with questions to ask your doctor. The TV ads are backed up with two page ads in magazines with more detail than we need to know.

I heard an ad about anxiety attacks or panic attacks. I wondered what produces worry and anxiousness--the future, our health, finances, concerns about extended family and such. The ad implied if I’m anxious I only need to take a dose of “Bluesblasta” and everything will be ok; medicate myself into drug induced tranquility.

We are a nation that wants the pain killers first. Emergency room doctors and nurses will verify this. Our first demand when we come into the emergency room is “Give me something for the pain!” rather than “What’s wrong?”

Has this shift in cultural values made us a nation of worry warts? Do we want tranquility at any cost? Have we as Christians bought into the worry and also the drug tranquility which is a temporary solution until we pop the next pill.

Jesus said in Matthew 6:25-34: "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? "And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

I believe Jesus main point is “Do not be anxious; do not worry.” John Piper wrote about that very thing in his book What Jesus Demands from this World. "We ought not be anxious about food and clothing because food and clothing cannot provide the great things of life--the enjoyment of God, the pursuit of his gracious favor, the hope of eternity in his presence. We get anxious about food and clothing to the same degree that we lose sight of the great purposes of a God-centered life."
Lord, may we grow in knowledge to have a greater depth of relationship with you to know you and trust you. Continue in your work in us. Come Holy Spirit. Amen

1 comment:

Lee Shelton said...

What I find interesting is that so many people treat God's Word like a drug. They want a quick fix for what's wrong: relationships, finances, etc.

Great post, Jerry. We constantly need to be reminded not to worry.

-Lee (IV)