11 Jul “Why Worry, When You Can Worship?” by Cynthia D’Attillio
I’ve written this verse on an index card; it’s in my car. It’s gotten kind of ragged over the months, shoved in the cup holder, pushed into the change bin, wedged in place over the tachometer (who uses those things?). I keep it there in an attempt to memorize it.
I think it’s working. I might not remember the words exactly as written, but I remember the theme. That’s the important thing, in my opinion. When I notice I’m worrying, I remember—God doesn’t want us to worry. He’s got this. I’m not adding anything to my life, or this situation, by worrying about it. But the other day, stuck in traffic, heat waves rising off Bald Hill Road and my A/C not working, I realized how applicable Matthew 6:27 really is.
Now before you begin to lecture me, I want you to know– I understand that we’re not supposed to rewrite God’s Word. But I also realize that He gave us the ability to create and think using our own words. In this particular instance, “complaining” was the word I needed to use; complaining about the traffic certainly wasn’t going to add a single minute— never mind an hour— to my life. (It wouldn’t make the cars around me move any faster, either.)
As I sat there, not complaining, or worrying, but thinking–I realized that replacing worrying with other negative behavioral words, like whining, or arguing, could also be appropriate. In fact, I decided that just by replacing worrying with emoting, I discovered I could use this verse in so many appropriate situations. God gave us emotions, and they’re good— generally. But sometimes we rely on them instead of our faith in Him. How many times a day, a week, a month, a year— do you find yourself emoting? Worrying, arguing, criticizing, complaining… all those negative things we do, instead of placing your faith and these concerns squarely in our God’s hands?
I’m not going to suggest that you memorize Matthew 6:27 in this new way, by replacing worrying with something else. As I said, that’s not what we’ve been told to do. But I am going to suggest you think about what this verse suggests: that you realize what negative behaviors and emotions you place your faith in, instead of God. And, I’ll urge you to remember this one most important thing: those negative, emotional behaviors will not add a single hour to your life. Spend your worrying time in worship, and be faithful. God’s got a plan— even in traffic. By letting Him handle the situation, whatever it is, you will gain a whole new perspective on life in this world and in looking forward to the next.