Wednesday, March 19, 2008

follow-up on worrying

I have been thinking (but not worrying of course :) about this subject of worrying many times over the last couple of days. So I decided to email my pastor and ask for a little clarification on what he had said. I think maybe he could have used a different or better Scripture passage for this message, but that is neither here nor there.

Anyways, he was kind enough to email me back with a response. Here is what he wrote (edited some personal things out):

"The question you brought up is a good question. I trust this
will help.

"When ever one is concerned about another it only reflects their love and care. This is not wrong. Worry is wrong when a person fails to believe and enters into doubt that God is unwilling or is not operating in his or her best interest. In the text that was used, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness,” we realize that we must look toward God, and seek Him. When we doubt, we often fail to seek; then we look for other ways to alleviate our fears. This alleviation leads to anger, rebellion, and withdrawal from God."

Proverbs 3:5 "Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. 7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil. 8 It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones."

"The above passage is a great demonstration of this. When we trust our own ways, our own wisdom, we fail to acknowledge God, we fail to trust, and our heart wavers. There is nothing wrong with being concerned and then turning it over to the Lord. This brings great peace and according to Proverbs 3:8, it is a healthy thing. The unhealthy part is when we don’t turn it over to God, and we continue to fret and worry.

"In short, whenever the concern for James and his welfare comes to mind, lift him up before God, trusting God will take care of him. Then rest in that. Those concerns may happen many times in a day; then, many times in a day, enter into prayer, giving God your full trust. There is nothing like the peace of God that passes all understanding.

"Anything short of that leads to worry and that is sin. The line is drawn when God is left out."

I was so thankful that my pastor was willing to address my concerns and curiosities and attempt to explain further. In doing so, I believe I understand more where he's coming from. And it's really not the same as what I had interpreted from his message. So, if you are unsure of something or misunderstand someone, don't hesitate to ask about it. Assuming is never a good thing.

Anyone else have an opinion on this? Or just want to add your two cents? :-D


Andrew said...

I'm still not convinced worrying is a sin. It might be. I'm just not convinced right now.

What would cause one (specifically, Christ) to sweat blood the night before his execution, if not worry? He even asked the Father if there was any other way the goal could be accomplished.

Was Jesus worried? I suppose you could say that he wasn't worried, but he was in dread. Then dread is contemplating the bad that will happen, and worry is contemplating the bad that might happen.

I don't know. It's something to think about.

Melissa said...

If worrying is a sin, then Jesus wasn't doing it. However, He was obviously concerned -- I think the difference here is that He gave up His concerns in prayer to His heavenly Father. Even though He knew something bad was going to happen, and His human side didn't like it, He was willing to let God have His perfect way.

So is worry a sin? I think it CAN be.