Q: #544. How can I stop worrying? What does the Bible say about worrying?
A: Worry, at its root, is a lack of trust in the Lord. It robs us of joy and peace. God has promised to work all for good for those who are His (Rom 8:28). He will never leave nor forsake us (Heb 13:5). Problems help us to lean on God. They help us to grow. We are told to rejoice in tribulation and persecution. Something that can help you is to look back on your past problems and see where God has delivered you. Over time, as you see God delivering you, it gets easier and easier to trust Him.
Worry often comes when we come up with scenarios to problems that have not even occurred yet, and try to figure out what is going to happen. However, the majority of times they never even come to pass.
We also worry about the past. The past is behind us, and we cannot change it. If we are worried about sins which occurred before accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, they are no longer held against us, and we start a new life with Jesus (that is why salvation is called being “born again”). If our sins have occurred since accepting Jesus, we confess our sins, repent, and move forward, trusting in God’s forgiveness. Leave the past in the past. God does!
Go to God in prayer, and cast your cares on Him (1 Pet 5:7), then let them go. Take things one day at a time, one problem at a time, with your best effort.
A thing I try to remember is that God is in control. Nothing happens that He does not allow to happen, so whatever the problem, God has a reason for it happening. We cannot always understand why things happen the way they do, but, as the song goes, “God is God and I am not.” He knows what He is doing, we must trust Him.
Allow Christian brothers and sisters to share your burdens and pray for you (James 5:16). Here are a few other verses about letting others help you:
(Eccl 4:9-10) Two are better than one… (10) For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow (friend): but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up.
(Heb 3:13) But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
(1 Th 5:11) Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another…
(Prov 27:17) Iron sharpeneth iron; So a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.
***Note: I offer this advice though. No one wants to be around someone who is worrying and complaining all the time. Do not “continually” drag people into your problems. It is not of God, and it can test even the best of friendships. Don’t run to people every time you have a problem, seeking advice from everyone, or seeking to “get a word.” Generally, everyone has different advice and then you end up with all kinds of opinions, and you worry even more trying to decide what advice to follow.
Finally, do not keep waiting for some thing or some event to come to pass to be happy. Generally, if you live your life this way, you are never happy. You will find that even if you get what you desire, you are still unhappy, because the only thing that can truly fill the void and worry in your life is trusting in God and looking to Him for fulfillment, happiness, and contentment.
Let me close with a number of verses (and a few quotes) which you should keep in mind when worrying.
(1 Pet 5:6-7) Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: (7) casting all of your care upon him; for he careth for you.
(Ps 55:22) Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.
(Phil 4:6-7) Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God (7) And the peace of God which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
(Ps 37:4-5) Delight thyself also in the Lord; And he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. (5) Commit thy way unto the Lord; Trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.
(Luke 10:41-42) And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: (42) But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
(Phil 4:19) But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
(Prov 20:24) Man’s goings are of the Lord; how can a man then understand his own way?
(Ps 37:23) The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way.
(Ps 145:18-19) The Lord is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth. (19) He will fulfill the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them.
(2 Sam 22:31) As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the Lord is tried: he is a buckler (shield) to all them that trust in him.
(Ps 62:5-8) My soul, wait thou only upon God; For my expectation is from him. (6) He only is my rock and my salvation: He is my defence; I shall not be moved. (7) In God is my salvation and my glory: The rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God. (8) Trust in him at all times; ye people, Pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Selah.
Also see: (Matt 6:25-34)(Lk 12:22-31)(Prov 3:5-6)(Ps 94:19)
And, here’s a few good quotes on worry:
We know so little about the future, that to worry about it would be the height of foolishness. – Charles Spurgeon
Worry and anxiety are sand in the machinery of life; faith is the oil. – E. Stanley Jones
Walk by faith! Stop the plague of worry. Relax! Learn to say, “Lord, this is Your battle.” – Charles Swindoll
Worry is an old man with bended head, carrying a load of feathers which he thinks are lead. – Corrie Ten Boom
You can tell the size of your God by looking at the size of your worry list. The longer your list, the smaller your God. – Author Unknown