I don't know for sure how it starts; usually it's something as simple as a friend running a few minutes behind or remembering that a bill due today is yet unpaid. Or sometimes all it takes is a twinge of pain in my back or my side. Somehow, any one of these things becomes a choice: I can trust the Lord and grow or give in to worry and shrink back. Too often, I end up worrying about car accidents and having my electricity shut off and about a sudden return of the cancer I have beat three times.
My sanctification has taken a lot of twists and turns in the years since I came to know Jesus. I've run up against discontentment and jealousy; I've played recklessly with lust and gluttony; I continue to stare down pride. I've had victories - when I've been truly happy for others' successes. I've had failures when I spoke harshly and bitterly to others when I couldn't have my way.
But through all the years of becoming more like Jesus, worry is the sin I fear the most. Ironic, isn't it? Worrying about worrying? That's the poison of this sin. Even my sanctification itself becomes the object of my sin. I worry that I am not praying enough, that I am not resisting sin like I should, that my Bible reading or acts of service are lagging behind. When I fear the future, I liberate myself for too little faith.
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I recently wrote this article for my church's blog and wanted to share it here. Hope you will click through and finish reading this essay.
Photo by Jim Sneddon, used with permission under the Creative Commons License.