Tuesday, April 7, 2015

One Thing We Shouldn't Borrow

     Over the years of home educating our children, we must have borrowed hundreds of books from our local library.  Most of the time, we were good about remembering to get them back in time.  However, there were occasions when we would forget a book and run up a hefty fine.  Nevertheless, we were grateful to have access to many good books.  While borrowing from the library is a positive, the one thing we should not try to borrow is trouble!
     Allowing "vain imaginations", worry, or concern over things we cannot change leads us to borrowing trouble for ourselves.  I can honestly say that I have succumbed to this from time to time.  Clearly, God does not want us to spend our time or energy living in fear over things that may not even happen.  Jesus addressed this in "The Sermon on the Mount" (Matthew6:22-34).  The Lord
reminds us not to worry about what we should eat or wear.  Perhaps my favorite phrase in this passage states:  "And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?"  Now that is an excellent question.  In reality, there are many things in life over which we have little or no control, and that is the problem isn't it?
     Most of us want to control our circumstances.  We would like to have everything lined up each day so we could feel more secure;  But where is the need for faith in God if we have everything under our control?  As I recall, it was God who created the world and all of us who live in this world.  Therefore, it would seem reasonable to assume that we are not in charge.  Rather, God is the Sovereign Lord over all creation.  Jesus made this clear when He said that a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without God being aware of it.  Since we are more valuable than a sparrow, we should stop worrying over every issue of life.
     What is the end result of long term stress, worry and anxiety?  For one thing, it does not do our health any favors.  We often have trouble sleeping, and we can be tense or on edge with our loved ones and co-workers.  This is where Satan can grab us by building "vain imaginations" in our thinking.  If this is not stopped in time, we can have made a mountain out of an ant hill.  Life becomes harder to face each day.  This is not how God intended for us to live.  Paul points this out in his letter to Timothy (2 Timothy 1:7):  "For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control."  This is the opposite from wallowing in self-pity and worry which does not glorify God or prove to be a good witness to our fellow man.
     Our lives are meant to be a faith walk, and an adventure of sorts.  We are to take one day at a time not living in the past or reaching ahead to grab an unknown future.  The only ting we can change with God's help is our own outlook.  We cannot change others and often we cannot change our circumstances.  Yet, we can roll our cares upon Him.  Through daily prayer, we can turn loose all the tension and fear we have, but we must leave it with God and not take it back again.
     Borrowing library books gives us access to many more resources than we own.   This is a good thing.  However, borrowing trouble is the last thing we need in our lives.  If there is something over which we are worried or in fear, we need to give it to God in prayer.  Then, we must believe that He who knows when a sparrow falls will certainly be able to carry our concerns far better than we can.  Let us remember this word from Hebrews and stand on it (Hebrews 11:1):  "Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen."  Selah!

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