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God’s Answer to Fear, Anxiety & Worry: Children of God

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie
The Truth Network Radio
November 2, 2021 3:00 am

God’s Answer to Fear, Anxiety & Worry: Children of God

A New Beginning / Greg Laurie

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November 2, 2021 3:00 am

Every kid has known a bully. The bully is often bigger and meaner and is a force to be reckoned with. Well, when your new best friend happens to be the linebacker of the school football team, it’s amazing how the bully isn’t so threatening anymore. What problems are bullying you right now? Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie shows us how God stands ready to meet us at our point of need, and His problem-solving resources are limitless and reassuring.

View and subscribe to Pastor Greg’s weekly notes.

Request your copy of The Jesus Musichere.

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A New Beginning is the daily half-hour program hosted by Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Southern California. For over 30 years, Pastor Greg and Harvest Ministries have endeavored to know God and make Him known through media and large-scale evangelism. This podcast is supported by the generosity of our Harvest Partners.

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Today's episode of A New Beginning is brought to you by Harvest Partners, helping people everywhere know God.

Learn more at harvest.org. And while you're there, browse our library of free ebooks designed to help you grow in your faith. God is bigger than your problem. And if you have a big God, you have a relatively small problem. And if you have a big problem, do you realize how big your God actually is? We should call out to God when our problems overwhelm us. But Pastor Greg Laurie reminds us how God can overwhelm our problems.

It's okay to call out to the Lord for help, but remind yourself of the power, majesty, and greatness of God, and it puts your problems in perspective. Every kid has known a bully. The bully is often bigger and meaner and is a force to be reckoned with. Well, when your new best friend happens to be the linebacker of the school football team, it's amazing how the bully isn't so threatening anymore.

What problems are bullying you right now? Today on A New Beginning, Pastor Greg Laurie shows us how God stands ready to meet us at our point of need. And his problem-solving resources are limitless and reassuring. You know, when a child is afraid of the dark, they need someone to reassure them. And the best thing to do is turn on the lights so they know there's actually not a monster under the bed, that there is no boogeyman, there is no threat to them. They need the reassuring words of an adult that can help them get a proper perspective. Well, in the same way, like little children, when we're frightened, when we're scared, we need the reassuring words of our Heavenly Father to help us in times of anxiety. So let's read some words from Scripture. John chapter 14, a very familiar passage, one that I really love. Jesus says, and let's get the context of who He was saying it to. He said this to His disciples in the upper room. This is after it had become known to them that He was going to be crucified, that He was going to be leaving them. So needless to say, they were very stressed.

They were filled with fear and deep anxiety. So with that backdrop, Jesus says these words, let not your heart be troubled. You believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father's house are many mansions.

If it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself. There where I am, you know. And you may be there also. Where I go, you know. And the way, the way you know.

We'll stop there. The word that Jesus uses here for trouble is a picturesque word. It means don't let your heart shudder. Have you ever had your heart shudder? Just really bad news.

Something that just was a shock to your nervous system. He says don't let your heart shudder. Jesus did not say worry and get super stressed and mull over your problems. Rather He said don't be troubled and hey, life is full of troubles. No matter how much money you make or where you live or what you do for a living, you'll never be able to create a trouble free life.

Job says in chapter five verse seven, people are born for trouble as readily as sparks fly up from a fire. I hate to break it to you but it's always gonna be something. It's always it's always gonna be something. Just when you get through that one conflict or that one difficulty or that one hardship or that one trial, another one's coming.

I don't say that to depress you. I say that to prepare you so you understand that troubles may come and what you need to do when those troubles do come. There's big things that seem to overtake us and they're small irritating things but know this, while there are reasons to be troubled there's a greater reason not to be. Jesus says in verse 10 from the New Living Translation, trust in God, trust also in me.

In other words Jesus is saying look I haven't brought you this far to abandon you now. I know what I'm doing so I'm asking you to believe. I'm asking you to trust me.

Here's something to consider. When I don't understand what is happening, fall back in what I do understand. Let me say that again and direct it toward you. When you don't understand what is happening, fall back in what you do understand. So what don't you understand?

Well whatever it is you're facing, whatever hardship difficulty, why why why we ask. Okay fall back on what you do understand. What do I know? Well if I'm a Christian I know my sin is forgiven right. If I'm a Christian I know that one day I'll go to heaven. If I'm a Christian I know that God is in control of my life.

And if I'm a Christian I know that God loves me. And if I'm a believer I know that all things work together for good to those that love God another called according to His purpose. So though I don't understand these circumstances I'm going to fall back now on what I do understand. And I have found that when those what if questions start rolling through your mind I like to go back to what I do understand. What I know is true.

So here's something to consider. I love this little verse. So much packed into one verse of scripture. Luke 12 32. Jesus said fear not little flock it is your father's good pleasure to give to you the kingdom. We learn a lot from that verse.

Number one fear not little flock. So my point is this God is our shepherd and we are a sheep. You know I don't know how much you know about sheep.

I don't know a lot about them but I've read some things and I've held them occasionally but I'm not real familiar with them. But I know they're basically pretty defenseless creatures. Sheep don't bite. Sheep can't run very fast.

Sheep don't even have claws. Honestly a cat has more going on than the sheep does. We have this little cat that walks around our neighborhood. I actually like this cat. He's like the exception to cats for me because he's just kind of his own little cat. And he was standing in the middle of the street.

Who does this? This cat's like I'm going to sit here and I don't care. Everyone go around me. He's just sitting there. And a dog is yapping at him and kind of coming toward him.

He's just like come on bring it on you know. I thought I like that cat. Cats have more going on than sheep because at least a cat can claw or a cat can climb a tree and run. But sheep they're just like leg of lamb for the taking.

They ought to just carry mint sauce around with them like here I am. Eat me now. I'm delicious. Yeah that's what the sheep is. A sheep is totally dependent on its shepherd.

Why? Let's be kind and just put it this way delicately. They're really stupid. They run in flocks. They do what the other sheep do. They're easily frightened. They're skittish. And there have been more than one occasion where one sheep goes off a cliff and the other sheep follow him off the cliff.

So no wonder the Bible says all we like sheep have gone astray. Big picture. You're defenseless. Big picture.

You can't really defend yourself ultimately. You need the shepherd's care. That's why David was sitting around one day when he probably wrote Psalm 23 and you know he was a musician as well as a warrior and ultimately a king.

And he's maybe just kind of you know strumming some chords G C D looking around. He's looking at his flock and he's saying, you know what? These sheep are dependent on me and the Lord. He's my shepherd.

I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul.

He prepares a table for me in the presence of my enemies. And my cup runs over and yay goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life and I'll dwell in the house of the Lord forever. And even though I go through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil because he's with me.

That was the picture he was painting for us. That just as those sheep need me I need God. Fear not little flock. It is your father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom. God is our shepherd and we are sheep.

Number two. God is our father who loves us and cares for us. Notice he says it's your father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

So why should I not be afraid? Because he is my shepherd watching over me but he's also my father caring for me and I can approach him at any time with whatever is troubling me and he will listen. But not everybody can call God father. People will say today well I believe in the brotherhood of man and we're all children of God. Sons and daughters of God.

Actually that's not true at all. We're not all children of God. We're all created by God. We're all made in the image of God and we're all separated from God by our sin. But the only way to become a child of God is you must be adopted into the family. And the Bible says for as many as received him he gave them the power to become the sons of God. But once you believe in Jesus you can call God father. After Jesus died on the cross and rose again from the dead he appeared to Mary Magdalene and he says to her don't cling to me.

Some translations put it don't touch me. But I think she was holding on to him so tightly and he says for I have not yet ascended to my God and to your God and to my father and your father. That was a revelatory statement. That was a radical thing to say to a first century Jewish person and especially a Jewish woman. Because women were looked down upon in that culture. You know people like this say Christianity oppresses women.

Nothing can be further from the truth. Christianity and the Bible elevated women to their proper place made in the image of God. So he says to this woman who was once possessed by many demons I'm going to my God and your God. I'm going to my father and your father.

Mary guess what? He's your father now. You can call him father now. Not just me. We get the fact that Jesus calls God father.

But now we can because of what he did. Pastor Greg Laurie will have the second half of his message in just a moment. We hear from listeners all over. Some who listen to A New Beginning, Pastor Greg's podcasts, and even to the recent SoCal Harvest.

My message is to Pastor Greg Laurie and amazing SoCal Harvest. I watched on my cell phone and I was crying and wanted to let him know that my son died in a car accident too. Like his son.

And you never get over it. But I have a grandson named Jonathan. His same name is his son and it's amazing that he has to go through the same thing.

But yet his son is a pastor now but my grandson is a prodigal. So could you please hold him up in prayer. I'll never forget watching that. It was beautiful.

I watched the whole thing and it came in so clear. And I want to let you know how much I appreciate you Pastor Greg Laurie. Thank you so much.

God bless you. Be assured that when you request prayer we'll make sure to pray for your need. If you have a story of how one of Pastor Greg's outreaches has touched your life, would you call and share it with us? Call 866-871-1144.

That's 866-871-1144. Well today Pastor Greg is pointing out how God's children have a special relationship with God the Father and how that should bring us comfort during our times of worry. Calling God Father hits us in different ways because a lot of it depends on what kind of an earthly father you had, right? I never had a father really growing up so when I thought of God as father I just had a big blank. Like I don't even know what that is to have a father. Some of you had fathers that were cold and distant. Others of you had fathers that maybe left you when you were young. Some of you may have even had fathers who were abusive and harsh with you or maybe incommunicative but it was not a loving image of a father. But then others of you got a warm loving hands-on involved dad. How many of you had a really good dad growing up? Oh God bless you for that. How many of you did not have that experience raise your hand?

Okay so I understand what that's like. My wife Kathy or her father Richard Martin lived to be 95 years old. And he was a very very good father. And I think because of that when Kathy and her three sisters and her brother heard the gospel they were they very quickly embraced God as their father. They had such a great father figure. And so this is this family that they lived in the far east.

Richard Martin was very educated, very smart guy, very successful guy. And so this is a very cultured family. Great manners. And then one day Kathy brings me home to meet the parents. It looked like something the cat drug in right. I had long hair past my shoulders.

A thick red beard you know. And like here's my new boyfriend dad. And he didn't take to me very well.

But nor did his wife Pilar. But so finally we decided we wanted to get married. And so I took a walk with him. I said well Mr. Martin I want to marry your daughter. And I wanted to ask for your blessing. And he looked at me and said well no.

He's very calm. No. No. And can I ask why Mr. Martin? He said well you don't have a stable income. And and we're concerned about that. And concerned for the welfare of her daughter. And I reassured him it'd be okay. And he said no again. But so but ultimately when we got married he gave his daughter away.

But an interesting experience happened. When Kathy was younger she is the middle daughter. She has her older sister Mary.

And then there was Dodie. And then there's Kathy. And then her younger sister Jackie. And then finally her brother Ricky. So she had an uncle. This was the brother of Richard Martin's wife Pilar.

And he was not able to have children with his wife. And so he came to Pilar his sister one day and said you know you already have two daughters. Now you have a third one. Can we just have your daughter?

And interesting request. And so she said let me talk to my husband about it. This shocked Kathy.

Like you want to talk to dad about this? Like this was on the table. But fortunately Richard dad said no. And but he eventually gave her away to me on our wedding day. And I'm thankful for that. But here's the good news. When you are a child of God no one is going to take you out of his protective care. And we're afraid oh what if I lose my salvation. Oh what if the devil gets me.

Are you kidding me. You're a child of God. And Jesus said in John 10 29 I will give them eternal life. They'll never perish.

And no one can snatch them away from me. God is your shepherd. God is your father. And finally He is your king. Because Jesus said fear not little flock it is your father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

Notice He says it's His good pleasure. I think sometimes we think of God as stingy. God doesn't want to give you that. God doesn't want to bless you. God wants to hold all the good stuff back and just kind of make your life hard.

Nothing can be further from the truth. It's His pleasure to give to you the kingdom. But also when we think of God as king it reminds us of the sovereignty and the power of God. So when you're filled with anxiety and fear and worry because of a problem you're facing consider this God is bigger than your problem. And if you have a big God you have a relatively small problem.

And if you have a big problem do you realize how big your God actually is. That is why in the Lord's Prayer Jesus taught us to pray our Father who art in heaven hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done.

On earth as it is in heaven. And then ultimately we get to the request give us this day our daily bread. But effectively Christ is saying when you pray just contemplate the awesomeness and the greatness of God before you start firing off your petitions. It's okay to ask God for things.

You should. It's okay to call out to the Lord for help. But remind yourself of the power, majesty, and greatness of God and it puts your problems in perspective. Have you ever wondered why when you leave church a lot of times you feel better than when you came in? The reason is is because of amazing preaching by other pastors here at Harvest.

No. I think the preaching plays into it but I don't think it's any person. I think what is it all about? I come in and what do I spend a good part of my time doing? Magnifying God. Magnifying God. And so as I am thinking of God's glory and His power and I am sort of casting my problems aside and I am worshipping Him then I hear a message hopefully that reminds me of God's love and His sovereignty and His power and all those things I need to be reminded of. And I leave. Now I have the same problems leaving that I had coming in but all of a sudden but all of a sudden I don't see them in the same way.

It's all about perspective isn't it? And so He's your King who's in control of your life. Pastor Greg Laurie with great perspective today on how we should view the challenges we sense in light of the God we serve.

And there's more to come in this message here on A New Beginning called God's Answer to Fear Anxiety and Worry Part One. You know Pastor Greg back when I was a young Christian contemporary Christian music or as we called it then Jesus music was sort of a soundtrack for my life. And I remember the very first Christian band I saw I believe it was Mustard Seed Faith at Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa. Do you remember the first Christian band you saw?

Yeah I would say it was probably Love Song. But I became friends with all the guys in Love Song. Just saw them recently. Of course Odin Fong from Mustard Seed Faith, Louis McVeigh, Pedro Buford and other individuals were in the band through the years. But great little band. I did a lot of ministry with them.

Traveled to a lot of places with them. And I was amazed Dave how music could open a crowd up. You know you get a crowd of people just standing around the band gets up starts playing what I would call anointed music. Music that God had his hand on. You know you think of the story of Saul the king of Israel who was being tormented by demons. And the Bible tells us that David not yet the king still a shepherd boy would come in and play in a stringed instrument.

Today we might call it an electric guitar. And he would play his guitar and sing his songs of praise to God and it would bring temporary comfort to King Saul. And to me that is the power of music that God has his hand on. It can open the heart of a person. This is one of the reasons why in our events and of course in our church we we put a focus on really well done Christian music.

Because I believe it's a great way to reach people and to build a bridge to people. So I saw it in its origins to the present day and I would say this Dave I think Christian music has come so far that in many ways it surpasses secular music. I don't mean lyrically I mean in the melodies in the production. It's at least as good if not better and a lot of the secular stuff you're hearing out there right now.

So maybe you've wondered well how did this all start? Ah I have a book for you it's called The Jesus Music. It's brand new and it's written by my friend Marshall Terrell. Marshall and I have co-written three books together and we're working on a fourth. Marshall is a great researcher an excellent writer so he takes us back to the very origins of Jesus music to the present day of what we call contemporary Christian music. So you're going to get a little history on this music we listen to and you're going to learn more about some of the artists you've come to love. These are not perfect people. These are flawed people that God has used.

People like you and me. You're going to be fascinated by this book called The Jesus Music. Hardbound glossy pages lots of photographs interesting stories and history about this music that we have all come to love and we'll send you your own copy for your gift for your gift of any size and let me just say the reason we offer these quality resources is so we can just help you encourage you and bless you but also it's a way for you to support our ministry because as you can imagine it takes money to be on the radio and we want to continue to reach you in your area and go into new areas where we're not on yet. So when you order one of these resources like The Jesus Music and you send a gift to us we put that gift to work but as our way of saying thanks we send you something of value like this book we're sending this time called The Jesus Music so for your gift of any size you'll get your own copy and I know it will be a blessing to you. Oh yeah it really will. So get in touch today with your donation and be sure to ask for The Jesus Music. It's the kind of book you won't be able to put down and you might want to give a copy to a friend. Maybe you're looking for a good Christmas gift for a family member.

Again it's called The Jesus Music. Ask for it when you send your contribution today to A New Beginning, Box 4000, Riverside, California 92514 or call us anytime 24 hours a day at 1-800-821-3300. That's 1-800-821-3300 or go online to harvest.org. And while you're online with us why not begin receiving Pastor Greg's daily devotions via email every day.

They're free of charge. We'll send them to the email address you provide for us and when they arrive you can read them or with one click listen to the audio version. Sign up today free of charge at harvest.org. Well next time Pastor Greg provides more helpful insight on keeping our eyes on the Lord when our fears and anxieties threaten to detour our walk of faith. Join us here on A New Beginning with pastor and Bible teacher Greg Lauren. Hey everybody thanks for listening to this podcast. To learn more about Harvest Ministries follow this show and consider supporting it. Just go to harvest.org and to find out how to know God personally go to harvest.org and click on know God.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-28 21:18:17 / 2023-07-28 21:27:57 / 10

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