Tag Archives: worry

WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT FEAR? 121415

ANXIETY CLOUD.121415What do you fear? 355 terrorists killings in America alone this year. How can we keep calm and carry on?  Jesus overcomes our fears.  He warns against fear more than 100 times.

There are three types of fear. We fear for our safety. We fear God.  We suffer from emotional fear.  We let our emotions makes False Evidence Appear Real.

There’s all kinds of things to be afraid of.  We should trust God because He’ll take care of us. Says so in Hebrews 13:5.  Jesus transforms our fears when we release them to Him.  The wise men released their fears to God and came and worshiped Him.

But here’s the problem.  When we release our fears to God, we lose control, and some of us cherish control of our lives almost more than life itself.  But when we give up control, when we surrender control, we find Jesus, and Jesus is LIFE.

IN GOD WE TRUST

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YOU’VE GOT A FRIEND.100115

Handsome man playing guitar. Close-up of young man playing acoustic guitar while sitting in front of the window

Been stressed lately.  My main source of income dried up.  Had way too much to do and not enough time to do it all.  Not getting enough rest.  Not enough exercise. Heck, I don’t even have time to talk to my one kid still at home.  He’s too busy too.  Long days and short nights.  Need a little relief.  What can I do?

Well, I can think a little about God.  Max (Lucado) says, “When you’re down, think of all God has done.”  Oswald (Chambers) says, “We think everything should be turned into useful teaching.  In fact, it is to be turned into something better: character.” Charles (Stanley) says, “When you need help, thank God for all He’s done.”  Alistair (Begg) says, “All God has done for us should be saved and remembered, to bring honor and glory to Him.” Wow!

And I can pray and tell God I love Him.  I really do thank Him for things He’s done for me, both long ago and in the last few days.  I’m thinking about how I could use a little relief; a little peace and quiet; a little rest.  Continue reading

FRUIT. 021915

It’s like an apple tree. What does an apple tree do to bear fruit?  Well, it sits there and waits. But while it is sitting there it takes in the ingredients it uses to make fruit; water and stuff from the soil, sun and rain from the sky.  Then one day, when the time is right, it puts out leaves and begins to develop this chlorophyll that is its food; and it puts out buds and blossoms and bees come along and help with the pollination; and in due time, while the tree is still waiting, the blossoms turn into little, tiny apples.  And eventually the apples grow big and ripen and get ready to be picked and eaten.

But here’s the version  we would envision if we were comparing most of us to an apple tree.  The apple tree gets up every morning and starts worrying about how it is going to bear fruit.  It knows there must be fruit down in there somewhere, so it grunts and pushes and strains and gets tired and frustrated and develops ulcers waiting for something to happen; and grunts and pushes, expecting I guess, for the apples to just POP out of the ends of the branches.  One day no apples; the next day POP and there are the fully developed fully ripened apples.  Just doesn’t work that way, does it?

I may have said this before somewhere, but in Spanish wait and hope are the same word, which is esperar; and sometimes I think trust is all a part of that same feeling; while we’re waiting and hoping, we’re also trusting that God is going to bring it to pass; because there’s not a way in the world that we’re ever going to push hard enough or grunt hard enough to make those apples pop out on our tree.  We’ve got to trust that God, by His Spirit, is going to use what He’s put in us to fulfill His purposes in the world.  That’s service.  And that is the same feeling we need to have when we pray; that “down deep knowing” that God is going to bring it to pass.

COPING WITH LIFE.021615

Stress Burdens Sticky Notes Reminders for Stressful LifeYou know, every day with Jesus really IS sweeter than the day before; but sometimes the cares of this world just get you down.  There is too much to do and not enough time to do it all in. The bills are more than the income and lots of people standing in line waiting for their part.  You’re tired, exhausted, and you get depressed from all the toxins in your system caused by the fatigue.  There’s nothing you’d like better than to have one whole day just to sleep, and maybe another day to get organized, but all this stuff is still there demanding attention.  What do we do? Continue reading

DON’T WORRY, BE HAPPY.012915

Trust in God wooden sign on a beautiful dayIn Philippians 4:6-8, Paul says, “Be anxious for nothing, (don’t worry) but in everything by prayer .  .  with thanksgiving,   .  .  [ask for what you need]; and the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. .  .  ., whatever things are true, noble, just, pure, lovely, .  .  [worth knowing], whatever is virtuous and worthy of being praised—meditate on these things.” (Tex’s paraphrase)

So what is this passage about, really?  Continue reading

A Dog in the Woods.010115

Last night about 9:00 PM we took the dogs for a walk.  We have two 6 month old rat terriers, a boy and a girl, Ragnar and Lagartha (aka Gertie).  Often our teen-age son Ian and I walk them.  Actually we run them.  I hold the dogs, straining at the leash; Ian runs down the street a block or two; then turns and calls them; I let go of the leashes and they run as fast as they can to Ian.  They love Ian and he loves them back, just as much.  These are the first dogs we have had since Ian has been old enough to remember.  They are truly his companions. ‘Course Gaye and I love them too, but not near as much as Ian.

So last night we did our routine til we were maybe 6 blocks down the street and then we turned back and did it again on the way home.  When we were maybe 2 or 3 houses from home, Ragnar got loose and ran for our back yard.  Ian chased him, but “Rags” beat him to the trees along the creek in back of our house and went exploring.  Usually when one of the dogs gets loose, he’ll run for a minute or two and then come back to the other dog.  But this time Rags didn’t come right away, so I gave Ian my cell phone/flash light so he could search the woods.

Well, he searched and searched but no luck.  Ian was getting desperate.  He was hollering at the top of his lungs, loud and long, “RAAAAAG-NAAAAAR” over and over.

Pretty soon I started saying, “Don’t holler so loud.  He’ll come back soon.  He doesn’t want to stay outside in the dark all night any more than you want him to.  He’ll get lonely in a few minutes and come.”

But he didn’t come.  We walked all around in the woods looking.  We went down the street to the place where you could go in the woods from the other end.  All the time hollering “Raaaag-Naaaar”.  But you could tell Ian was getting really worried, and I was getting a little concerned myself.  As I listened to Ian, I could tell he was getting scared Rags wasn’t coming back.  What if something had happened to him? Maybe the leash got caught and he got hung up in the bushes.  Maybe he fell in the creek and couldn’t get out.  Maybe he’d crossed the creek and couldn’t get back.

I started praying, “Lord, please let Rags come back.  Please don’t let anything happen to him.  Please help Ian not be scared.”  And every time I’d see Ian, I’d say, “It’s going to be OK;  he’ll be back soon.”  But I was beginning to wonder myself.

Finally we went to the back of the back yard, where he first ran away, and I said to Ian.  “We’re just going to have to wait. Come on and sit down on the back porch with Gertie, and see what happens.”  When we reached the porch, Ian sat down and petted Gertie; and I said to Ian, “Maybe we should pray.”  By this time he was crying, because he was so worried about Rags.

Ian said, “Sit down here and pray with me.”

I said, “You pray,” but he asked me to go first.  So I prayed, “Please Lord, let Rags come home.  Don’t let him get hurt.  Don’t let him get lost so he can’t figure out how to get home.  Thank you for answering these prayers.”

Then Ian prayed, “Dear Lord, please let Rags come home.  Please work everything out for good for all of us.  Do Your will.  We’re trusting You to take care of all of us. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”

We got up.  I said I was going to bed.  I said Rags would come back soon and everything would be OK.  Ian went back outside the back fence to look for Rags one last time.  I was in the garage by this time, but I could still hear and I heard my wife say, “He found him.”

When I went back out, Ian says, “I just wanted to look one last time; and when I got the edge of the trees, I could see him coming out.”

“Thank God! ‘, I said, “Just goes to show you how God answers prayers.  Praise the Lord!”  We all stood in the yard and hugged ole Rags.  We were very glad that the lost had been found.  We all went in thinking about how God takes care of us, if we’ll just ask Him.  It reminded me of that verse in Luke, where it says that God will answer your prayers, and speedily too, if we’ll only trust him.  It was a perfect example of how God’s care meets a boy’s trust.  Praise the Lord from Whom all blessings flow!

It’s amazing how you can learn such good lessons from such a simple story. Prov. 3:5-6 Praise God from Whom all blessings flow.

PS A day or two later, we realized we’d lost Rags’ leash that night.  I went searching and found the leash, tangled up in some limbs.  The other end led down a hole.  I pulled on the leash pretty hard and out came the harness.  Looks like Rags was trapped in the hole, so we couldn’t hear him whine or bark, but he was able to wriggle free at almost exactly the same time we were praying.  I don’t know about y’all, but that sounds like God.