Tag Archives: worry

Thus you shall say to the worried…….

Good Monday morning!

This morning I am sharing a post from a blogger I don’t know. I don’t even know his or her name. All I know is that this blogger left a comment this morning on my blog, then I followed up by checking out theirs.
What I found was a lot of simple, quick-to-read posts meant to encourage. And being that it’s Monday, and considering what I’m currently struggling with, this post from Bible Blogger hits the spot.

Check it out!

via Thus you shall say to the worried…….

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by | December 17, 2018 · 8:34 am

It Will Be OK

I was lying in bed last night, setting the alarm on my iPhone, when it occurred to me that I have not been writing on my blogs very much lately.

Just a few minutes ago I thought it would be a good idea to at least go back to the archives and find something interesting or entertaining to repost, you know, just to keep the activity going.

But then I read a post from Wally Fry. He’s going through some tough stuff right now with a job loss and the impending death of this beloved father-in-law due to brain cancer.

Life can be hard. Devastating, to be honest.

But, even though what I’m about to say may not sound comforting on the surface, it’s a foundational truth that can help through times like this – times like a lot of us are going through right now: Others have been down this road before us, and they say, “It will be OK.”

What I know is that we live in a world that is broken by sin. One day it will be made new. One day all the answers we are looking for will finally be answered. On that day we will finally be able to understand what our finite brains are incapable of understanding, now.

One day the redeemed in Christ will stand in the presence of Holiness and look back on what God was doing through all these trials and say with utter amazement, “WOW!”

Until then, this is the day that the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it. It’s a choice I will make – by faith – that the One who created the day is with me in the day and will never leave me nor forsake me to its uncertainties and fears. I am not alone in the furnace. I’m not alone in the boat that seems to be sinking. I’m not alone in the field with not enough provision to feed the thousands.

And if you know Christ, neither are you.

It will be OK.

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Filed under Faith, Family, Life Lessons, Life/Death, Struggles and Trials

I’ve Got a Mighty Friend

Tough Times

A few minutes ago I was reading a post from a friend. He expressed several needs, yet praised the Lord for being in control (Romans 8:28). And just this week we in the Baker home realized we will be facing some additional struggles we had hoped to avoid. Nevertheless, aren’t you glad we serve a Mighty God?

All of us are living in tough and troubling times. For some of you, the road you’re on has far more bumps and potholes than the roads of others. Yet, all of us will agree, wherever we are, that the world is not getting any better. Times are tough, and are only going to get tougher (even with a new President).

But…

But, I have a Mighty Friend who is not affected by the whims of men or the winds of time. As a matter of fact, my Friend is the One who created man and started time.

Ten years ago (2007) I wrote a song for my then-little girls to sing. Every time I listen to it these days I’m tempted to kick up my heels, pump my fists, and waved my hands while shouting, “Praise GOD!

Maybe you need some encouragement? Just read the lyrics I have included below, and if God is your friend, don’t worry (Matthew 6:30-34), He’s got this!

Mighty Friend

Well I may not be as tall as a building or strong as a big ol train
I may not be as smart as a scientist doing things I can’t explain
But I know the One who made the tallest mountain and can whip up a hurricane
And the very One who invented gravity says He even knows my name.
 
Well I may not know what’s comin’ in the mornin’, or what the day may bring
Good or bad, I’m not gonna worry, ‘cause Jesus knows everything.
So I’ll do the best with what God has given me as long as there is time
‘Cause the One that got the clocks a-tick’n told me it’ll all be fine.
 
When the devil acts like a bully, putting on a scary show
Before you run away and hide in a corner there’s something you need to know
The One who spoke the world into existence is standing by your side
And if you look close the devil’s knees are shakin’ cause he knows he’ll lose the fight
 
Chorus:
Cause I’ve got a Mighty, Mighty Friend who watches over me
And He’s the Mighty, Mighty Savior who died to set me free
Well I may not be the greatest at anything, but this one thing is so
The God that is the greatest at everything loves me, this I know.
 

© 2007, Anthony C. Baker (BMI)

Katie the Music Major is going to hate me for doing this…

…but I am going to include the recording I was talking about. This was recorded back when she (Katie) was only 10 or 11 years-old. It’s not Nashville quality, but it’s precious. So, as so many people say before they sing in church, “Don’t listen to how we sing, just listen to the words.”

“Mighty Friend”

 

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Filed under Faith, God, music, Relationships and Family, Struggles and Trials, worship

Hopeful Sandwich

Sandwiches

photo (35)I love sandwiches! Don’t you? I do, and let me tell you some of my favorites.

First, there’s peanut butter and jelly (preferably Concord grape or strawberry). Next, there’s the quintessential grilled cheese. Bologna (pronounced by me as “baloney”) and cheese is always good, too. And then of course, especially around this time of year, there’s the unequaled left-over turkey sandwich made after Thanksgiving!  All of these are favorite sandwiches of mine.

What makes a good sandwich? Well, what’s between the bread, of course. But that’s not to say the bread isn’t important; the best sandwiches couldn’t even exist without the bread. As a matter of fact, there are times when the bread is all that gets notices, while what’s between is barely tasted.

1 Peter 5:7 is like that. Let me explain.

Popular Bread

Like the bread that gets more attention than the meat, 1 Peter 5:6 and 8 are slices of Scripture about which everyone raves. I’ve heard far more sermons about them than I have verse seven.

For example, if you are at all familiar with a fighter named Ronda “Rowdy” Rousey, then 1 Peter 5:6 will make perfect sense to you. As a matter of fact, I would bet verse 6 was quoted from a lot of pulpits the Sunday after Holly Holm stunned the martial art world when she forced Rousey to get un-scheduled plastic surgery after a kick to the head.

“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:” – 1 Peter 5:6

And then there’s 1 Peter 5:8. This is the popular slice of Bread most often preached to those who forget we have a spiritual enemy who wants to knock our heads off.

“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” – 1 Peter 5:8

These two verses are famous, oft-quoted, oft-referenced slices of Bread which form a sandwich around verse seven, the “meat” that gives us reason for hope.

He Cares

1 Peter 5:7 (KJV) reads, “Casting all your care upon Him; for he careth for you.” Aside from the fact that we should be humble under the hand of God and watch out for an enemy who wants to devour us, did you ever stop to think that Jesus cares about what you’re going through? That’s the meat.

But if you can keep reading for just a little while longer, I will show you why this sandwich tastes sooooo good 🙂

Casting. There are three little words which are critical to a deeper understanding of verse seven. The first one is “casting.”

The Greek word translated as “casting” is ἐπιρίπτω (epiriptō). Beside 1 Peter 5:7, the only other times it’s used is in Luke 19:35. In that case it’s used in reference to how the Jews threw their coats and Jesus upon the donkey colt that would carry Him into Jerusalem. Can you picture it?

Cares. The next word is “cares.” We are told to cast our “cares” upon Jesus. Well, what are our cares? The Greek word here is μέριμνα (merimna), which means “care” or “anxiety.”* But what is really interesting to me is the meaning of the word on which this word is based, μερίζω (merizō). Merizō is used to describe something separated into parts or cut into pieces.**

Careth. The third word, μέλει (melei), is the Greek word that means what we think of when we read “he careth for you.” I simply means that somebody cares.***

In other words, as I like to describe it, our “cares” are those things which make us anxious, cause us to worry, and literally tear us apart. But Jesus wants us to “cast” them upon Him! Why? Because He cares!

Yes, Jesus cares about the things that worry you; the things that weigh heavy on your heart; the things that seem to be tearing you apart. Jesus really does care!

Why is it, then, that we let things get us down? Why don’t we just take the things that tear us apart, whether big or small, singular or multiple, and throw them on Jesus just like the Jews did with their coats upon that colt.

Jesus cares about our “cares!” That’s the hopeful meat of this “sandwich.” It means we don’t have to go through the tough times alone; we can rest in the mighty hand of God; and we can resist the devil who’s seeking our destruction…because Jesus cares!

Pretty tasty, eh? I thought you’d like it 😉 !

 


 

*“Greek Lexicon :: G3308 (KJV).” Blue Letter Bible.

**“Greek Lexicon :: G3307 (KJV).” Blue Letter Bible.

***“Greek Lexicon :: G3199 (KJV).” Blue Letter Bible. 

 

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Filed under Bible Study, Depression, Food, Love of God

Something Good Worth Waiting For

I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. – Psalm 40:1

There’s an old saying, “good things come to those who wait.” Where did it come from? Who said it first? I don’t know, although I’m sure it’s traceable. All I know is that the first verse of Psalm 40 says almost the same thing, only what comes to the one waiting is better than anything this world can offer.

Something’s Wrong

Let’s think about some things that have to be going on for this verse to make any sense. First, something is wrong. Why else would David be crying out to God? Something is wrong. Why else would he be wanting God to do something.

Tonight I dealt with some serious prayer requests from people in my congregation. One thing led to another and I brought up the question that so many ask: “If there’s a God, then why is there pain? Why do good people suffer?” Here’s another question, though: if there is no God, and there is still pain and suffering, then what’s the point? Either there is pain and suffering, people going through bad times, for no reason whatsoever, or the other option is that there is a great plan beyond our understanding, one being worked out by a loving God. The pain is there, regardless. Why not believe there’s hope?

In God’s Time

The second thing to observe is the fact that God works on His own time table. David cried out, for how long we don’t know, but God’s response was not immediate.

How often to we find ourselves calling out in prayer, “Do something! Do it NOW!” In David’s case, whatever was wrong was more than he could handle on his own; he needed divine intervention. How often do search for immediate answers? How often do we question God and His timing all because we know more about what is really needed at the moment?

David waited patiently. Patience requires faith. It is impossible to please God without faith (Hebrews 11:6). Are you waiting patiently?

To Those Who Wait

To those who wait patiently on the Lord; to those who have faith that God will indeed do what is best; to those who wait God gives something that most do not realize they never truly have – His undivided attention. David waited patiently on the Lord, and He “inclined” unto him.

Picture two people sitting at a table. Lots of other people are at the table, too, just going on and on about all manner of stuff. One person tries to talk to the other, but there are so many distractions. Eventually, when the other notices how much the one wants to talk, he leans over, rests on an elbow, bends an ear, and says, “Now, what were you saying?”

God is omniscient; it’s not like He can’t hear all prayers. But within this verse we get a glimpse into the reality that there is something special, a sweet privilege that comes to those who “wait patiently on the Lord.” To reach that point of communion with the Creator of the universe, to know you have His ear: now that’s a good thing for which to wait, don’t you think?

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Filed under Bible Study, God, Love of God, Theology

I’ve Got a Mighty, Mighty Friend

Tough Times

A few minutes ago I was reading a post from a friend. He expressed several needs, yet praised the Lord for being in control (Romans 8:28). Aren’t you glad we serve a Mighty God?

All of us are living in tough and troubling times. For some of you, the road you’re on has far more bumps and potholes than the roads of others. Yet, all of us will agree, wherever we are, that the world is not getting any better. Times are tough, and are only going to get tougher.

But…

But, I have a Mighty Friend who is not affected by the whims of men or the winds of time. As a matter of fact, my Friend is the One who created man and started time.

Several years ago (2007) I wrote a song for my little girls to sing. Not long ago, while preparing for a banquet in our church gym, I listened to a recording of the song …and shouted…literally, I kicked up my heels, pumped my fists, waved my hands, and shouted “Praise GOD!

Maybe you need some encouragement? Just read the lyrics I have included below, and if God is your friend, don’t worry (Matthew 6:30-34).

Mighty Friend

Well I may not be as tall as a building or strong as a big ol train
I may not be as smart as a scientist doing things I can’t explain
But I know the One who made the tallest mountain and can whip up a hurricane
And the very One who invented gravity says He even knows my name.
 
Well I may not know what’s comin’ in the mornin’, or what the day may bring
Good or bad, I’m not gonna worry, ‘cause Jesus knows everything.
So I’ll do the best with what God has given me as long as there is time
‘Cause the One that got the clocks a-tick’n told me it’ll all be fine.
 
When the devil acts like a bully, putting on a scary show
Before you run away and hide in a corner there’s something you need to know
The One who spoke the world into existence is standing by your side
And if you look close the devil’s knees are shakin’ cause he knows he’ll lose the fight
 
Chorus:
Cause I’ve got a Mighty, Mighty Friend who watches over me
And He’s the Mighty, Mighty Savior who died to set me free
Well I may not be the greatest at anything, but this one thing is so
The God that is the greatest at everything loves me, this I know.
 

© 2007, Anthony C. Baker (BMI)

Katie is going to hate me for doing this…

…but I am going to include the recording I was talking about. This was recorded back when she (Katie) was only 10 or 11 years-old. It’s not Nashville quality, but it’s precious. So, as so many people say before they sing in church, “Don’t listen to how we sing, just listen to the words.”

“Mighty Friend”

 

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Filed under Faith, God, music, Relationships and Family