Faith battles are fought in the mind. In other words, what we say to ourselves controls much of what we do, whether right or wrong, true or false, which is the fruit of what we believe. Therefore, counseling ourselves with pithy statements rooted in biblical truth is an exceedingly important, but oft-neglected discipline of the Christian life. If you and I are going to walk by faith, not by sight, then we must consistently put to death the lies that our depraved hearts both produce and believe. One key area in which this discipline is so consistently needed—at least for me—is in the battle against worry.
Knowing this about myself, I chose to again meditate on the comforting, faith-building words of the Lord Jesus concerning God’s faithful care for His children, those whom He has redeemed by the blood of His Son. But, this time, I took a different tactic. I looked for key truths that I need to constantly speak back to myself. “Self counsel” is what we sometimes call it (Think Note to Self by Joe Thorn). It basically means that we learn the discipline of speaking biblical truths to ourselves in order to kill the lies that we so naturally believe about God and about ourselves. So, here are 14 truths that jumped off the pages of Scripture this morning, from Matthew 6:25-34. These truths, in turn, become reasons not to worry. Read Jesus’ words and then think about these simple truths.
- God commands me not to worry; worry is sin (vv. 25; 34).
- The essence of life is something more significant than material provision (v. 25).
- The birds don’t worry, fret, or hoard; yet their needs are met (v. 26).
- God feeds the birds that are not made in His image (v. 26).
- I am more valuable to God than all the birds combined, because I am made in His image (v. 26).
- Worry does not lengthen life (v. 27).
- The flowers are clothed by God (vv. 28-29).
- God will clothe us (v. 30).
- Worry is rooted in unbelief (v. 30).
- Worldly people worry; it’s characteristic of unbelieving pagans (vv. 31-32).
- Our heavenly Father knows our needs (v. 32).
- All our material cares will be taken care of by God when we pursue Christ and His agenda, first, above all (v. 33).
- Tomorrow will take care of itself (v. 34).
- Today has enough trouble; I don’t need to create more by borrowing from tomorrow (v. 34).
So much of our battle with the world, the flesh, and the devil is fought in the realm of ideas–thought patterns (2 Cor 10:3-4; Eph 6:17). To defeat the lies that we so easily believe we must take up the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. What truths do you find in this passage that would help you kill worry?
[To learn more about the discipline of renewing your mind with Scripture, read the book Counseling One Another.]