Worry is the misuse of your imagination
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. – Philippians 4:6
22 I tell you not to worry about everyday life – whether you have enough food to eat or enough clothes to wear.
23 For life is more than food, and your body more than clothing.
24 Look at the ravens. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for God feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than any birds!
25 Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?
26 And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over bigger things?
27 “Look at the lilies and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon, in all his glory, was not dressed as beautifully as they are.
28 And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?
29 “And don’t be concerned about what to eat and what to drink. Don’t worry about such things.
30 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers all over the world, but your Father already knows your needs.
31 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and he will give you everything you need.
Ed Foreman was born near Portales, New Mexico. He grew up in New Mexico and got a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from New Mexico State University. From 1953 to 1956, Foreman was employed by Phillips Petroleum Company. He invented a new method of drilling for oil. He soon became a self-made multi-millionaire by the age of 26.
Ed Foreman went on to live an incredible life. Ed became a motivational speaker who lived and embodied his message of health and happiness. He helped people reduce their levels of stress and anxiety. He coached people on how to turn worry into success, and experience enjoyment in life! His achievements are practically innumerable. He became an author and wrote multiple books. Here are some of his memorable quotes.
“Winners are those people who make a habit of doing the things losers are uncomfortable doing.”
“We change when the pain to change is less than the pain to remain as we are.”
“You can never tell what type of impact you may make on another’s life by your actions or lack of action. Sometimes just with a smile on the street to a passing stranger can make a difference we could never imagine.”
“Worry is nothing less than the misuse of your imagination.”
Worry is often the product of one’s imagination. Worry is an anxious concern based on awareness of possible danger or misfortune.
In the English language, worry is defined as being troubled or giving in to mental anxiety. Peace of mind is lost and replaced by mental agitation or distress.
REFLECT & PRAY
“Jesus is not advocating a shiftless, thriftless, reckless, thoughtless, improvident attitude to life; he is forbidding a careworn, worried fear, which takes all the joy out of life” (Barclay).
Father I recognize how easy it is to be divided in my heart. Encourage me to trust You and simply surrender my goals and ambitions and lay them at your feet. So easy to wander, allow my imagination to run away, and become unduly concerned over possible, even probable issues.
Ponder for a moment what it would be like if there were no God. Life would be random and haphazard or driven by an imaginary concept of fate or karma. People have no control over either.
Therefore, without God, worry or anxiety is a natural reaction of fallen human DNA to the troubles and vicissitudes of life. Such uneasiness drives people to attempt to protect themselves to the best of their ability from whatever difficulties confront them.
However, children of the King do not live in a godless world. We have a caring, loving Father who is actively involved in their lives. Thus the Lord Jesus Christ strongly exhorts children of the King not to worry. Worry is not merely discouraged; it is scorned and forbidden.
Luke 12:22 [Jesus said] I tell you not to worry about everyday life.
InLuke 12:22, the Greek word translated as worry or anxious is merimnao. It has the sense of over-anxiety, anxious care, being troubled, or unduly concerned. In the Greek language, words closely related to merimnao are meris and merizo. They have the sense of dividing or parting. When we worry, we divide our emotions. We become fractured and splintered internally. How sad it is that so many children of the King have known and experienced fragmented emotions of worry and anxiety.
“Food, clothing, and shelter represent the indispensable needs of humanity. Merimnan does not refer to forethought and planning about such things but rather to undue concern about them, which results in apprehensiveness and anxiety. Angst is a common theme in ancient as well as modern literature, including Jewish Wisdom literature. Hardships and difficulties are undeniably the common lot of humanity, but worry and distress over them result in sleeplessness, physical exhaustion, and bitterness (Ecclesiastes 4:4-6; 6:7)”(Edwards).
“Jesus is emphatic that his disciples need not be overly concerned with the basics of life, such as food, drink, or clothing. The intent is not to cultivate a carefree irresponsible attitude that refuses to work or plan for the future. The rhetorical question, ‘Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?’ indicates that Jesus intends his hearers to cultivate a sense of priorities where even the essentials of life are not given ultimate concern. After all, a life consumed by the concern for material needs will of necessity lack commitment and devotion to that which is of ultimate value” (Chouinard).
It all boils down to trust and priorities. We can trust in ourselves and seek to fulfill our own preferences. Or we can trust in the Father’s faithful and caring arms and seek first His kingdom above all else. We can either seek to remain autonomous and independent, or we can surrender our hearts, minds, and wills to the Father and depend upon Him.
1 Peter 5:7 Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.
“Happiness is not a product of human striving, but of learning to surrender all of life into the faithful and caring hands of the Father” (Edwards).
© Dr. H 2022