I picked up a copy of Max Lucado’s new book Anxious for Nothing a few weeks ago, and have been reading a few pages at a time so I can soak up all of the knowledge he’s sharing. Anxiety creeps into my life when I let my guard down. The moment I decide that I’ll “just do my devotions this evening because I need to go to the store now” or “I’ll just catch the service online this week because I’ve got a stuffy head today” is the moment the devil sees his opening. He’s sitting back in the shadows, just waiting for the chance to sow seeds of doubt, worry, stress, and anxiety in your life.
In the book, Lucado talks about how things we’ve done in our past cause us to be anxious for today and anxious in the future. We are so worried about screwing up again that we turn ourselves into a ball of nerves and the cycle of anxiety continues. We worry about past relationship failures, past job losses, or mistakes we’ve made as parents. We worry that we will fall out of grace with our Savior.
One of my favorite quotes so far in the book is, “There’s a reason your windshield is bigger than your rear view mirror—your future matters more than your past.” Thank You, Jesus, for that truth. I’m so thankful we have a merciful God who we can run to when we need to be forgiven. He allows us to put the past in the past and move forward.
Our God knows our screw-ups before we even make them…and He loves us anyway. He knows I'm going to be a big ball of nerves if I miss a deadline, or if I get writer’s block when I am seeking the right words for devotionals. He knows I’m going to stress about finding a job, and He knows I’m going to worry about my kids. He wants me to know that He’s got it covered.
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
I Peter 5:7
I don’t know about you, but the James series really challenged me, especially in this area. I’ve really tried to be purposed about giving my worries to God. Then, as human tendency kicks in, I play tug-of-war with the things I “gave” Him for the foreseeable future. God’s working on me in that area, and I find myself being reminded—“You already gave that up, no take backs.”
As you walk through the worries of life, I pray that you will seek Him for guidance and wisdom. Even if you play a little tug-of-war of your own, at least take the step to release control to Him…and repent when you take it back and have to give it up again after you’ve failed. We are all works in progress! He loves us and His mercy endures forever!