HOW TO NIP “WORRY WEEDS” IN THE BUD
The worries of life love to interfere with our happiness. They consume our thoughts and steal our joy. Just like weeds, they choke out the inspiration we need to overcome life’s problems. But we can learn to nip those “worry weeds” in the bud.
In this series, I refer to troubles as “dirt.” The truth is dirt can be beneficial when it’s in the right place. Dirt on our hands contains germs, but dirt in the ground makes things grow.
This is the sixth blog in the series Is Dirt in Your Future? To review, we’ve covered the following topics:
- The “dirt” or negative circumstances in our lives can become soil for personal growth.
- Soil is living, but dirt is dead. What we do with our “dirt” makes all the difference.
- In the Parable of the Sower Jesus compares our hearts to soil that needs to be prepared.
- The seed sown along the wayside shows us that hardened hearts can’t receive the word. At times, even the disciples couldn’t understand Jesus.
- The stony ground obstructs roots of faith and keeps them from growing, so being rooted and grounded in love is essential.
PART 6: THE SEED CAST AMONG THORNS
The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful. Matt13:22 NIV
Most Bible versions translate this word as “thorns,” but these thorns behave like weeds. They prevent other plants from growing to full potential. The original Greek word akantha means thorn and aptly describes what kind of weed chokes out the word.
WORRY CLOUDS OUR VISION
Thorns poke and jab. One could say that worries pierce us and cause mental pain. Dwelling on troubles skews our focus and clouds our vision. It distracts us from understanding the written word of God and keeps us from hearing His direction. We forget we are his beloved children and lose sight of his promises to help us in every situation.
WEALTH DECEIVES US
When we hear the term “deceitfulness of wealth,” we assume this means accumulating money and possessions to make us comfortable. But it means more than that. Our income, no matter the size, is not our true source. Pressing needs as well as cravings can take our eyes off Jesus.
SO, WHAT CAN WE DO?
- Identify the thoughts going through your head; then evict the bad ones.
As we busy ourselves with everyday tasks, how often do we take inventory of what goes through our minds? We drive to work, cook a meal, or take care of our family as we worry about how to pay a bill, or mentally rehearse a fight we had with our teenager.
Finally, brothers and sisters, keep your thoughts on whatever is right or deserves our praise: things that are true, honorable, fair, pure, acceptable, or commendable. Philippians 4:8 GW
Worry takes up valuable real estate in our minds and squats on territory that belongs to positive, righteous thoughts. What we think about is under our authority. We can choose what we meditate upon. It’s time to kick the squatters off our land.
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5 NIV
- Cast your cares upon him.
Worry occurs in the imagination. Instead of allowing negative thoughts to consume our minds, we can choose to use our imaginations in a positive way. Imagine putting your problems in God’s capable hands. You can get creative with this. For example, think about Papa God standing in front to of you with a smile on his face. He holds out his hands and you give Him a treasure box filled with broken pieces of a ceramic bowl. You know you don’t know how to fix it, but He assures you He does.
Pour out all your worries and stress upon him and leave them there, for he always tenderly cares for you. 1. Peter 5:7 TPT
3. Fix your eyes on Jesus.
When we lose sight of our Savior, we begin to sink in the stormy waves, just like Peter did when Jesus invited him to get out of the boat and walk on water. Peter eagerly got out on the sea, but as soon as he focused on the waves he started to sink. Jesus grabbed his hand and lifted him up. [Matthew 14:22-33]
Going through a storm is not a sign of his disapproval. On the contrary, Jesus lovingly looks at us and asks us to get out of the boat of worry. He holds out his hand and says, “Grab on to me, I can walk you through this.”
There’s always going to be a storm somewhere. But in the middle of our storm, we can imagine being held in the comfort of his arms.
Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith… Hebrews 12:2 NIV
TURNING OUR “DIRT” INTO SOIL FOR PERSONAL GROWTH
Going back to our “dirt” analogy, worry and negative thinking need to be put in their proper place. Remember, soil is living, but dirt is dead. Worry kills our hopes and snuffs out our dreams. It needs to be moved from our minds to the feet of Jesus where it becomes living soil. Here we can learn from our experiences, draw closer to the Lord, and find our answers.
We can nip those “worry weeds” in the bud.
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