"But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble." Matthew 6:33-34
What has you staying up at night? Family matters? The economy? A health issue? Fast Company magazine suggested several unique ways to rid yourself of worry. They include changing your bedtime, smelling a grapefruit, and engaging in forest therapy. These strange suggestions have one thing in common—they try to take your mind off of your worries.
There’s a better, spiritual answer to worry. God gives us a great treatment for worry in Matthew 6:33-34. He says, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry...” God says seek Him first. Focus your attention on worshipping the God who made you, loves you, and cares for you.
Worshiping together with other Christians can be uplifting. When we sing and pray and put our thoughts toward God, it helps us deal with worry in our minds. Most importantly, when we listen for God through worship and prayer and His Word, we hear His voice speaking into our lives. When you examine friends who worship regularly and are in the Bible regularly, you’ll find they have something in common—they probably don’t worry very much. Because the more time we spend with God, the more trusting we become toward Him, and the less worried we become about the circumstances around us.
Are people in general more worried today? Recent data suggests that people are more worried than ever, from anxiety over terror attacks, to finances, to loved ones, to identity theft. At the same time, church attendance is down, with only 28% of younger Americans (between 23 and 37) attending church. One must wonder if there is a correlation between the two.
In 2013, the New York Times published an article about the benefits of church. They cited studies that church attendance boosts the immune system, decreases blood pressure and may add up to three years to your life. Worship affects a person in a positive way, physically, emotionally and mentally.
When you worry, follow God’s instruction and worship. Engage in prayer. Sing a song of praise. Listen to your preacher. Open the Bible and read what God has said. Seek first God and His Kingdom. When you make worship the priority, you leave no room for worry.
God, today I want to worship You. I am going to spend time reading the Bible, and praying, and being quiet so I can listen specifically for what You want to say to me through worship, my Christian friends, Your Word, and my pastor. May my day be filled with worship, and please take my worries because You care for me, just as you have promised in Your Word. In Jesus’ name, Amen.