Wheels of Worry
I must give a big thank you to God for His kindness this past week. He blessed this ungrateful country with another year of existence, He gifted Pat and I with a wonderful family, He led us to the very best friends any couple could have, and He gave us His peace to enjoy “every day” with each other. I truly appreciate each person that took of their time to lift up my aching back to our Lord. It’s much improved today because you cared enough.
At first, I didn’t know where God was going with this thought, but He has His way of showing me things. So, I started a conversation with Him on this subject, beginning with, what He meant by wheel of worry and how it plays in our lives today. I felt God infusing me with His explanation of the title. I know most country folk over 30 with a driver’s license has or will experience what it’s like to drive on a muddy, slick dirt road in a heavy rainstorm. One quickly learns the difference in the tires riding on the smooth hard payment and plowing through the thick soft mud.
The mud cakes inside the tire treads and soon renders the desired motion to a crawl, if at all. The mud sticks to everything adding unwanted weight, complicating our journey even more. The bible speaks to this in, Proverbs 12:25 (NLT), Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up. Just like good tires trying to run on a muddy road; slipping, sliding, spinning and eventually becoming stuck (not moving). We are not unlike those tires when the storms arrive in our life. Satan adds weight to our already heavy load with doubt which cakes our mind with the what if factor, the why me scenario and no hope (beaten down) blues. As this weight accumulates, our desires of good- diminish, our resolve of victory- dissolve and our faith- turns to fear.
Just as a quick reminder of what The Apostle Paul tells us in, Galatians 5:17 (NLT), 17 The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. With this content in mind, look around your house to see how many items you own that draw you away from Jesus. Media devices, everyday chores, hobbies, other people, feelings and this is a short list, many more things can be added. Most all, of these intrusions are easy, thoughtless, effortless ways of passing time for one moment to the next, which allows our sinful nature to grow unchecked. Consequently, in conceding to a feel-good earthly routine, our flesh becomes stronger. Ultimately, just like the tires in the soft soupy mud our lives start to slip and slide in undesirable directions, we inevitably get sucked into the muddy depts of worldly ways. Deeper and deeper, spinning more wildly into the hopelessness of escape with each passing day. Adding to our burden of guilt is the weight of condemnation, which shames us from confronting God. Eventually we lose all sense of direction and miserably struggle through a day to day way of life.
Whereas our spiritual nature requires structure and discipline to flourish as God designed. Jesus exampled this in Mark 1:35 (NLT), Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray and Matthew tells us in Matthew 6:33 (NLT), Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. We renew our mind through spending time with God which keeps our tires (if you will) on solid surfaces. Our direction is constantly corrected and charted by God when we practice Matthew 6:6 (NLT), But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.
To me, here is where a little common sense goes a long way. Take a moment to examine your own situation. Do you feel stuck? Is the weight of everything becoming too much? Have you lost your sense of direction? If so “don’t get excited”, God has foreseen such events in our lives and made arrangements for our reconciliation. Yes! It is true that God will not overrule our freewill, however it is equally as true: He’s given us everything we need to overcome our sinful nature. The rub is; it’s a process of spiritual growth and we will experience little setbacks along the way, to which God has made a way for us with the death and resurrection of Jesus to cover our slips with His righteousness. We need only to recognize (our sin), confess (to Jesus) and repent (change our ways) to be reconciled with God. It’s time we pay special attention to Ephesians 5:15-17 (NLT), 15 So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. 16 Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. 17 Don’t act thoughtlessly but understand what the Lord wants you to do.
Please! Pray with me: Psalm 143:6-12 (NLT), 6- I lift my hands to you in prayer. I thirst for you as parched land thirsts for rain. Interlude 7- Come quickly, Lord, and answer me, for my depression deepens. Don’t turn away from me, or I will die. 8- Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you. 9- Rescue me from my enemies, Lord; I run to you to hide me. 10- Teach me to do your will, for you are my God. May your gracious Spirit lead me forward on a firm footing. 11- For the glory of your name, O Lord, preserve my life. Because of your faithfulness, bring me out of this distress. 12- In your unfailing love, silence all my enemies and destroy all my foes, for I am your servant. Amen
HAVE A BLESSED WEEK BY BEING A BLESSING TO OTHERS!