by Marilynn Chadwick In addition to “not working” on the Sabbath, the observant Jew also practices “not worrying.” Seriously. How does one “not worry?” Is that even possible? A friend coined this snappy little acronym: W.O.R.R.Y: “Worry Only Robs Rest from You.” It’s true. Worrying is exhausting. I realize as believers in Jesus, we’re not obligated to keep Sabbath according to any particular formula or law. But a true confession. After some honest reflection, I’ve come to realize that worry actually drains my energy and robs my inner peace way more than work does. Worry (translated as “I really, really care”) seems logical, even useful. I have plenty of excuses for why I worry. “I just have a vivid imagination.” “I have lots to do.” “There are so many people I care about.” Worry just comes with the territory, right? No. Not if we look at what the Bible says. I’ve been reflecting lately on Paul’s words about worry: “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything.” Next, he says to “tell God what you need and thank Him for what he has already done” (Philippians 4:6-7 NLT). These are training tips from a guy in prison who was always in danger of getting killed. But look at the amazing promise in verse 7: “Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” Wow. Prayer sounds like a much better use of my energy than worrying. I wonder if turning my “cares into prayers” (in the words of Charles Spurgeon) might be one way to stop this pesky Sabbath thief at the door? Not worrying on the Sabbath—or any other day for that matter—now that’s new territory! I truly want to learn to walk more solidly in my faith and drive out worry. But old habits die hard, so I’ll have to be patient with myself. Maybe you’d like to share some useful tips for how you deal with worry. Remember, we’re all in this together. Let’s encourage each other as we learn how to rest worry free.
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