Human thinking tends to veer towards the visible and palpable, so we are more inclined to be anxious of things we could see overtly. Perhaps, this is also the reason why many of us become more anxious about things and situations that we generally experience from day to day such as concerns over money matters, family affairs, and job-related issues. They directly affect us, and we tend to focus more on these things. However, an eye-opening post of a blog here in WordPress enlightened me and opened my mind to the idea that there are greater matters that we should truly be anxious of. Thus, this blog post.
Reading the post, Psalm Sunday (119:26) of brother Alan Kearns on his blog site Devotional Treasures, inspired this topic in my blog.
The affection of our hearts reveals what we care most about. Jesus said, “where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Matthew 6:21). We give more attention, more affection, more priority, and more time to something or someone we most care about. We spend time mulling over things that we find precious to us more than the things we do not find of great worth or importance.
So, consider your thoughts and things that cross your mind daily. What are the things that you usually spend a great deal of time thinking about? Where a major part of your thoughts goes, that’s where your treasure is. Where your thinking is usually directed to, that’s what you value the most.
It is not sinful to think of our daily affairs. It is not wrong to be concerned about things in our life. However, as Christians, we are not to treat these things as more important and of higher priority than God. God’s Word instructs us to not be anxious about anything.
“In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.– Philippians 4:6-8 (WEB)
The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honorable, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report; if there is any virtue, and if there is any praise, think about these things.”
God desires that we live in peace in ourselves. He provided a concrete and definite solution to anxiousness and a way to peace, that is, by praying about everything in our life and everything that concerns us. By doing so, He is pointing our focus back to Him. God must be our treasure and He must be the love of our life. God should be holding the place of priority in our life. Therefore, when we give more attention, affection, and time to other things besides God or the things of God, we don’t truly care about God.
On the other hand, when we give God the focus, it affirms how much we value God and His will in our life. Here then we learn a different kind of anxiousness, one that does not draw us away from God but one that brings us closer still to the Lord. It is being anxious about offending God. King David had this kind of heart. He sinned against God repeatedly, but He goes back to God in repentance, asking God to change Him and make Him pure.
Be more anxious about offending God. We have a lot of care, but we rarely become anxious about the spiritual condition of our hearts. We become more anxious when we are physically unwell, but rarely do we become more concerned about offending God.
It’s quite evident when we laugh at an unpleasant joke with our friends, justifying that it was just for fun.
It’s evident when we choose to slight someone out of our impatience and irritability instead of choosing to be patient and kind.
It’s evident when we choose our comfort first versus helping others when we are in the position to do so.
It’s evident when we choose to ignore the voice of the Holy Spirit and continue on doing what pleases us.
It’s evident when we choose worldly pleasures over the will of God.
Whenever we make choices that run contrary to the will of God, we are offending God. How much have we offended God? Too many to count with our fingers, for sure. But how anxious are we about offending God? Do we grieve grieving God? Do we hurt offending God? Do we spend the time to ponder over the thoughts and actions that we do that displease God and seek the Lord? Do we ask God to transform our hearts from hearts of stones to hearts of flesh? How much do we pray for repentance? How much do we care about sinning against the Lord?
The hearts of the children of God should be anxious about offending God and not about offending men.
May we pray like King David,
“Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity. Cleanse me from my sin.– Psalms 51:2-13 (WEB)
For I know my transgressions. My sin is constantly before me.
Against you, and you only, have I sinned, And done that which is evil in your sight; That you may be proved right when you speak, And justified when you judge.
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity. In sin my mother conceived me.
Behold, you desire truth in the inward parts. You teach me wisdom in the inmost place.
Purify me with hyssop, and I will be clean. Wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness, That the bones which you have broken may rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins, And blot out all of my iniquities.
Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a right spirit within me.
Don’t throw me from your presence, And don’t take your holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation. Uphold me with a willing spirit.
Then I will teach transgressors your ways. Sinners shall be converted to you.”