Episode 1. Don't Worry, Be Happy
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Here’s a question for you to kick off the week: how much of your brain time do you spend worrying about things that are out of your control? Really! You might actually be shocked at the answer to …
Here’s a question for you to kick off the week: how much of your brain time do you spend worrying about things that are out of your control? Really! You might actually be shocked at the answer to that question.
One of the things that we’re all keen on these days is transformation, becoming a better person, ditching some of the baggage we’ve been carrying around, lightening the load and living a better life. Is there anyone who doesn’t want that in their lives today? But if you’re anything like me you’ve tried all the self help programs and they work for a while but then you slip right back into the same old, same old and nothing ever changes for real, does that sound familiar?
Well in a sense that’s what this series, ‘Jesus Speaks, Jesus Heals’ is all about because when Jesus speaks powerful healing comes into our lives. I can honestly say that the most powerful changes that have occurred in my life over the last couple of decades in walking with the Lord, have come when I’ve heard His Word taken into my heart and allow the Holy Spirit to do His thing in me. That and only that is what brings lasting change.
And so today we’re going to continue taking an in depth look at this purple patch of teaching and healing in chapters 5 to 8 of the Gospel of Matthew in the first Book of the New Testament where Jesus completely blows people away with the power of what He has to say. You may recall last week we had a look at this Scripture; Matthew chapter 7 verses 28 to 29:
When Jesus had finished saying these things the crowds were astounded at his teaching for he taught them as one who had authority not as one of their scribes.
That’s what happens when you hear Jesus speak, it’s a work of power and a work of healing and today we’re going to see what He has to say about all the worrying that so many people do. We worry about this, we worry about that, it never achieves anything except to make us feel miserable but still we worry about this stuff, right? Stuff. Stuff that’s outside our control, stuff that we quite don’t understand, stuff that causes hidden fears.
Well let me ask you something, do you want to be set free from the scourge of all that worry in your life? Would you like complete healing from all that worry? Because that’s what I believe Jesus wants to do for you today. Remember Jesus speaks, Jesus heals and I believe in some mighty healing in your life today.
Well what did Jesus say about all this worrying that we do, Matthew chapter 6 verses 25 to 34:
Therefore I tell you do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, about your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?
And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? And why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow. They neither toil nor spin yet I tell you even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these but if God so clothes the grass of the fields which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you you of little faith.
Therefore do not worry saying, ‘what will I eat, what will I drink, what will I wear?’ For it is the Gentiles who strive for all of these things and indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But strive first for the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well. So do not worry about tomorrow for tomorrow will bring worries of its own, today’s trouble is enough for today.
Now whenever you see a ‘therefore’ in Scripture you always have to ask yourself, what’s the therefore there for? And in this case Jesus starts His whole bit of teaching about worrying with a ‘therefore’. By doing that He’s pointing back to what He has just said about money and wealth which is this, Matthew chapter 6 verse 24″
No one can serve two masters for a slave will either hate the one and love the other or be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.
The thing that we worry about most, not exclusively but mostly, is money. Somehow we’ve been programmed haven’t we to believe that we need more and more of the ‘stuff’ and if we don’t seem to have enough coming in through the door then we have to hit that big, red panic button that we all have somewhere deep inside. And the reason that we worry so much about this, Jesus is saying here, is that we’ve started to be influenced more by the reality of wealth, or the lack of it, than the reality of God.
We were made to walk in the cool of the morning with God just as Adam and Eve did, we’ve been made, you and I, to be with God and to trust Him but these days, just as our kids through their twenty four by seven connectedness to social media, are being influenced by forces outside the home than by their parents inside the home, so you and I are being influenced by the world than by God because many people have made a god out of money and wealth, an act of idolatry that squeezed the one true God out of their lives.
And with this bit of teaching here Jesus is trying to refocus us back on what’s important. If you worship quicksand, of course you’re going to panic when it gives way and you start sinking. But get a grip here on reality, life is about so much more than what we eat and drink and what we wear.
I mean look at the birds of the air, they don’t labour and yet God feeds them. Aren’t you worth so much more than them? And look at the grass of the field, those beautiful lilies out there, not even Solomon with all his wealth was as beautiful as them. And yet God loves you so much more, you are worth so much more to Him than the grass of the field.
We’ve all been in that place in life where we don’t have enough. Sometimes it’s money, other times its health, other times it’s love or nurture, whatever it is we’ve all been in that place and we’ve looked at the reality that we simply don’t have enough and so we panic.
Some people, many people are in a constant state of worry, all we ever see is that we don’t have enough and so we churn that around and over and over and over again as though somehow that’s going to make things better. Well get a revelation today: it’s not going to make anything better. Who by worrying can add a single hour to the span of their life?
So come on, what’s Jesus answer, what are the words of healing that He has to bring into your life today, here and now? Here they are”
But strive first for the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well.
In other words, refocus, get your eyes off the things that you’re worrying about and focus them back on God, go hard after the Lordship and the reign of God in your life, focus completely back on Him and living your life for Him. Get your priorities back in order.
Remember God, the God with the power to create the whole universe, the same God who gave us all of Creation, the same God who loves you so much more than the birds of the air or the grass of the field both of whom He provides for abundantly. Remember that God. Get your eyes back on Him, worship Him, love Him, serve Him, live your whole life for Him.
Not the shallow stuff of this world, not the trinkets that will pass away, not all that rubbish that somehow we’ve come to worship. No, focus on God and you know what’s going to happen when you take Jesus advice, where when you accept His Word in your heart and start acting on them, I’ll tell you because I know, the worry just disappears.
When you experience the love of Jesus in your heart there’s no room for worry, it just doesn’t make sense anymore and right there in that place is the healing that you’ve always been looking for.