Matthew 6:25-34 (ESV) 25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
Undoing the roots of anxiety
Lie #1: I am an anxious person.
Truth: Through Christ, I am a child of God.
Lie #2: I can’t help how I feel.
Philippians 4:4-7 (ESV) 4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Truth: God’s peace CAN guard my heart and my mind.
3 Marks of Faith-filled prayer:
1. Rejoice in the Lord.
2. Present your requests to the Lord.
3. Do it with thankfulness.
2 Timothy 1:7 (HCSB) For God has not given us a spirit of fearfulness, but one of power, love, and sound judgment.
Producing fruit through stress
Lie #3: I should avoid stress.
1 Timothy 5:8 (NIV) Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
Galatians 6:1 (NLT) Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back on the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.
Galatians 6:2 (NLT) Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.
John 16:33 (NLT) “I have told you all of this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth, you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”
Truth: I find rest in doing the will of the father.
Matthew 11:25-26, 28-30 (NIV) 25 At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. 26 Yes, Father, for this is what you were pleased to do….28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Growing Deeper Together
Use these points throughout the week as part of your quiet time, in your small group, or over coffee with a friend to help you apply what you learned in today’s message.
• Schedule a time to pray in a quiet space. (Matthew 6:5-14)
Sometimes we attempt prayer in a difficult moment and forget the way that God’s word instructs us to talk to God. Read Philippians 4:4-8 together. What are the ways and attitudes that this scripture recommends we talk to God when faced with anxiety?
• Practice bringing your anxiety to the Lord in the way that Philippians 4 describes. Schedule a time each week to pray about the regular sources of anxiety you are facing.
The Bible is not anti-stress, it is anti-sin. On a scale from 1 to 10, how much of your stress is a result of doing things outside of God’s ways? Where can you go to discover what God says about the stress you are carrying?
• Ask God, “What does the Bible have to say about my stress?” Write down the scriptures that come to mind and study them this week. If no scriptures come to mind, ask a mature believer that same question and write down the scriptures that come to mind for them.
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