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Can’t Stop Worrying: Brant Hansen

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine
The Truth Network Radio
April 16, 2024 5:15 am

Can’t Stop Worrying: Brant Hansen

Family Life Today / Dave & Ann Wilson, Bob Lepine

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April 16, 2024 5:15 am

You wonder if better days are just around the corner—but then, bam! Worries hit: Not having enough cash, kids struggling in school, feeling like we're falling short. Brant Hansen offers his solution for ditching those worries and trusting God in hard times.

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When we as believers try to be His apprentices, try to be Jesus' followers, we learn His ways, we become peacemakers. We become agents of His kingdom here.

His kingdom is beautiful. Welcome to Family Life Today, where we want to help you pursue the relationships that matter most. I'm Shelby Abbott, and your hosts are Dave and Ann Wilson. You can find us at

This is Family Life Today. All right, we have Brant Hansen back in the studio. Here's what I thought about yesterday when we were talking about, actually, I was listening to you two. You and Ann talk about worry and joy.

Like, do they mix? They really don't. And I had this thought because, Brant, you said, meditate, think about things you're grateful for. I'll never forget this moment when money was tight and Ann's, I'm outside Walmart waiting for her.

She's in there shopping. And, you know, it got so long, I'm like, I didn't even park. I'm on the edge and I'm breaking all the rules.

You're supposed to park. We're just back in Michigan for a few days, but we're celebrating our birthday. Oh, yeah, it was birthday. And yeah, I'm sort of upset she's buying all these gifts for a kid that's going to throw them all in the trash in a year. So it's so long, I finally go in and I see her in line. I'm like, wow, okay, there's a lot of people here. I go back to my car and finally she comes out. I go, what is going on? She goes, well, the lady in front of me, she just didn't have enough money, so I bought all her stuff.

I go, you what? She goes, like how much? I think it was a hundred bucks.

I'm like, a hundred bucks? I'm a stranger and I'm telling you, I was so bad. She played you.

She knew you were that woman. She's pulling out like pennies. Yeah, and I come home and I'm really, I'm upset and I'm worried because money's tight and she just gave away a hundred bucks and we just spent money on the kid's birthday thing. And I'm just not in a good place. And I don't know, an hour later, the mail comes or I'm looking through the mail and there's this check for like, I think it was $2,000 from some speaking gig like nine months ago. Oh yeah, we never sent you. And I literally just sat there and I'm like, there it is again. This is my story of my life. That you worry about so often.

You should make that list that we talked about yesterday. Yeah, but I mean yesterday, when you said, not only remember, but feel it. What do you mean by feel it? In that moment, I was so grateful.

I felt like God just said, I'm here. I'm on the cushion. You're in the storm. I'm just reminding you again, I've always been faithful. I always will. You can worry if you want.

You really don't have to. I've got this. This isn't your department.

It's my department. I've got this. And what you said yesterday just reminded me of that. That's sort of the source of joy, right? Yeah. In the sense that joy is a sense of well-being regardless of circumstances. That's Dallas Willard's formulation.

I love it. You have this sense of well-being no matter what. And it's because of his track record. You actually trust his character.

What's wild is that sort of story can happen. If you don't rehearse it, you will forget it. And then you won't remember just how faithful he has been over and over and over and over and over.

And at some point, honestly, we have to admit it's pretty stupid to get upset about the same thing over and over when he has come through over and over. Really, honestly, that's all of us, right? I mean, she didn't have to look at me right then, did she? She did. I saw that. She pivoted and just stared right at you.

She did. That's all of us, though. Years ago, I would say, I'm not really a meditative guy. I don't meditate. I was reading a book years ago about worry, and they're like, you know what worry is? It's meditation. You're thinking the same usually bad thoughts over and over and over. You don't meditate?

Yes, you do. It's called worry. Take that and flip it and say, I'm going to meditate on the Word of God. I'm going to meditate on his faithfulness. I'm going to meditate on the things you said yesterday.

It's like, that's a better way. Instead of just emptying your mind in meditation, like you said yesterday, that could lead to more stress, fill it in a different way. Not with worry, but with who God is. You counteract it with the truth about his goodness and how he's been good in your own life. You can counteract it with truth from scripture if you memorize something. But there's things you can catch yourself thinking a certain way and go, yeah, that's stupid.

I'm going to think about this other thing. And that's a brilliant and scriptural way to do stuff. And it's also self-control, which is a fruit of the Spirit. We have that self-control as we walk with him to be able to train ourselves to think in that way.

Yeah, you become a different sort of person who is less anxious. I've talked about this in the context of anger, but animals don't get ulcers like we do. And Jesus is telling us to be like the animal, be like the birds of the air. They're not worried about next week. Animals don't worry about next year, 10 years from now.

What about my IRA? What if this lion chases me in January of next year? They're not thinking that in the animal kingdom.

It's just today. And he's saying, be like that. Well, we have all of these physiological consequences because we disregard what Jesus is saying there. That we think it's not realistic or something, but our bodies suffer. You will age faster. Your heart will be affected. Your blood pressure.

All of your endocrine system because of this worry that you think you can't do without. Well, you can. And Jesus is not being unrealistic when he tells us that we don't need to be worried. He doesn't know less. He knows more.

And I use the example in Scripture, too. Paul, he's on this boat. I didn't even notice this story until I was writing this book.

This is awesome. I was like, oh, he's on this boat. There's like 260 whatever people.

It says the number. They're all convinced they're going to die. So, it's like being on a plane and it's going down. Because the storm is so great.

The storm is so great. They know they're going to wreck. That's the experienced sailors, captain of the ship. Everybody on there is like, okay, we're going to wreck and die.

Paul is not fazed at all. It's because God told him the ship is going to wreck, but everybody's going to be okay. No one will lose their lives. So, to everybody else's perspective, think about this.

He's the crazy one. They can tell this is going to wreck and we're all going to die. And you're not freaking out. You don't know what's going on. Well, that's the way our whole culture is. If you're at peace, if you actually aren't anxious, they'll think, well, you just don't understand. You should be anxious about what we're... No, no, no. It's not because you don't know.

It's because you know more. You know that God is actually good and you know how this ends. You know you can trust Him. And the way He promises that it's going to end is every tear will be wiped from your eyes. The lame are going to leap like deer. The deaf will hear. There's going to be these reunions of people who've gone on before. It's going to be a big party. Justice will be served.

His justice. I mean, that's one of the points in one of your chapters. It isn't that you know less that makes you not worry. You know more. I mean, I can't tell you the number of times as a chaplain of the Lions when a player would get injured. Most of the time, they freak out because they know their livelihoods on this. They'll probably get cut.

They don't know. And I remember we were, believe it or not, Lions in the playoffs this year. This was years ago. We were playing Tampa in the playoffs in our starting center. Kevin Glover, a man of God, a faithful man of God, still is to this day.

And this was back in the 80s when Kevin played. He blocked for Barry Sanders. And he broke his, literally right in front of me, right near the sideline, broke his tibia fibia.

You heard it snap. He's laying there. And I remember walking over just to pray for him because I would often put my hand on a player and pray for him. I did that for Mike Utley when he was paralyzed.

Reggie Brown, paralyzed. You know, Kevin's is bad. I mean, you heard it. And you know his season's over and maybe his career. And I remember walking up to him and looking at him and he's smiling.

I go, dude. He goes, God's got me. That's what I'm talking about. God's got this whole thing. It wasn't like he's laughing. No, he's not happy. But there was a sense of peace that I had rarely if ever seen in a player in that moment. Like, why does he have that peace? Just what you said.

He knows more than the other guys do. When Jesus is telling us, you don't need to worry, God himself, again, taking on flesh, and his message to us, among other messages, you don't need to worry about anything. I got this. You really don't.

You're going to have trouble. But take heart because I've overcome the world. You can be of good cheer. He's not joking. And I liken it to, speaking of like sports analogy, is the classic example to me is when like you're watching your team losing live, you're watching on TV or whatever, they're losing, the refs are ripping you off, you know, the coach is making bad calls. Been there. I've been there.

Troy Lyons happens every week. Fine. That's great. But there's an incredible comeback. And your team wins at the last second. All right. So that's quite a game.

You rewatch that on YouTube five years later. Yeah. Are you worried?

Are you mad at the refs? Yeah. No. Are you agonizing over every phone? Are you still like throwing your pillow off the couch when there's a phone? No.

Why? You know the ending. You know how this ends. And Jesus knows how this ends. And he's saying, you don't need to worry about anything.

That should matter. And if we know how this ends, this is the thing where you have to practice this so you have to control what's going into your mind, what you pay attention to. If you're paying attention primarily to things that cause anxiety, you're going to be an anxious person. Well, let's talk about that because your book title is Life is Hard. God is Good.

Let's Dance. Yeah. What about those people that are resonating with life is hard, but I don't think God is good. And they're checking out because they can't trust him. They don't know.

The good news is better than most of us think. I shouldn't have done this, but I was at this big Christian school and I said, hey, what was Jesus's favorite topic? It was like a big assembly or whatever.

There's hundreds of kids. They're like, love? Like, nah.

I mean, heaven, hell, money? Nah, nah, nah. And I was like, you're telling me nobody knows?

What kind of Christian school is this? And I meant it as a joke, but it met with silence. And I was like, I'm not getting my ass back. I was just trying to be funny, but it wasn't. I was like, it's the kingdom of God. That's his favorite topic.

People who are like, yeah, life is hard, but I don't know if God is good. You don't have a view of the kingdom of God that's accurate because if you do this again, Jesus keeps talking about it. He's saying it's breaking through now. It's available to you.

It's so great. Here's what I mean by that. Like, I get to work with this hospital network called CURE, which I've had the chance to talk with you guys about.

But I get to go visit these hospitals and see kids that get healed. So, it's like a girl who's 15. She finally has her cleft palate taken care of, and she's beautiful. And she's had to be completely isolated her whole life until now. Because?

Because she's considered cursed by that culture that she's in. These are at all the hospitals that CURE runs. Or a kid that can now walk and run for the first time or dance, play hopscotch. Dreams come true. You get goosebumps. You see the before and afters, and you get goosebumps. Like, that's because you're recognizing the kingdom. So, when the kingdoms describe, like in the Old Testament, what the kingdom of God looks like, the lame will leap like deer, the deaf will hear.

If you watch on YouTube, you can go on YouTube and watch somebody who can hear for the first time. Yeah. It gives you goosebumps. It makes you cry. Why? Why?

Or, I love, I'm not even that emotional normally, but like the ones where the soldiers come back and surprise a daughter in the classroom. Yes. Just sit there and weep. Yeah.

I saw one. I can't even talk about it. There's one like the girl just can't even believe that her dad's standing. She can't even react. She doesn't say anything. She's silent in her classroom, and everybody's just waiting. And then she just breaks down sobbing.

And she's just crying, like, Dad's home. Well, we watch that, and it gives you goosebumps. It makes you emotional.

Or the Olympics opening ceremonies, I use that as an example. There's this big processional. All the nations are gathered together, and there's this big processional.

People are at peace, and there's music. Why does that give me goosebumps? All of this stuff. It's the kingdom.

It's a little hint of it. That's heaven in its fullness. Seeing people get healed. You realize we're headed for this big party where we're going to see one person after another reunited with someone they lost. One after the other. And we're all going to be cheering that. And then here's a woman who could never walk, and now she's dancing.

And now here's a guy. It's going to be one after the other with all these nations finally gathered. No more ego trips. No more posing.

Just pure joy. That's what the kingdom is. So, Jesus is explaining how good it is, and he's actually like, it's breaking through. Let me show you. And he heals somebody. See? It's breaking through.

Heals somebody else. See? This is a little harbinger of what's to come. So, if you don't think that's good, actually do think you think it's good. You just didn't realize the plan that God has and how good he actually is.

He's at work. This kingdom is available to us now. This way of life.

It's really good. Is that what you think Jesus is getting at in Matthew 6? And we've talked about, you know, don't worry about what you're going to wear, eat, the birds.

We've said much about that. And then at the very end, you know, it's a verse we all quote. He doesn't say, seek first me. Yeah, the kingdom.

He says, seek first the kingdom. Yeah. Is that what you think he's getting at?

It's what the kingdom represents? Definitely. And letting us be involved in that.

Yeah. Pray that it'll be on earth as it is in heaven. And when we as believers try to be his apprentices, try to be Jesus' followers, we learn his ways. We make that happen. We become healers. There's peace. We become peacemakers. We become agents of his kingdom here instead of other kingdoms that are horrible. His kingdom is beautiful. It's worth trading everything for. Once you get a glimpse of it, you're like, this is so beautiful.

I'm all in on this. If you haven't been exposed to that idea, and unfortunately a lot of churches don't talk about the kingdom of God. It's too bad. Like Jesus' favorite subject, man, it should be ours too, I think. Our son went to Egypt a few years ago. And when he was there, he went to a ministry that once a week, the people and the parents that had kids that were disabled or had some sort of special needs, they would come to this big building and they would have a party. They would celebrate. They'd have food.

They'd play games. And it was such a ministry because in that part of the world, as you said, these parents were told that their family and their child was cursed. And so they had no place in society.

It gets me emotional talking about it. There was a child with special needs that was kept outside with a collar around his neck, and he was chained to the house but kept outside. And so here come these believers saying, let us celebrate your child. And so all these parents, you know, they're in such shame.

They don't want to even leave their house because they're persecuted and they're shamed and put off in society. And here they bring these kids into this room and the staff are cheering, clapping, celebrating, hugging, welcoming these kids. There you go. This ministry starts to grow because there's like, if Jesus receives us and if the kingdom of God is like this, we're in. It's exactly what you're talking about.

Well, and Jesus keeps trying to explain it to us. He's like, the kingdom is like this. It's like this banquet. It's like this place where the humble get lifted up.

When you flip things upside down, you get goosebumps. Very similar, like the Tim Tebow night to shine thing. So it's a dance where they have a red carpet, but it's not a red carpet for the cool, usual people. It's a red carpet for the people who have some kind of disability and they're honored and feted and like celebrated and cured as is every day in these hospitals. Even the mom that carried her son on her back.

Share that. Well, yeah, I just mentioned like her. She's at the hospital. She's had to carry her son first grade, second grade, third grade, more than a mile to school on her back because he can't walk. He's got club foot, but she can't do anything about it. She has no access to medical care. She's got no money. Well, a truck driver stops her.

He's in middle school at this point. She's still carrying him. He's big. A truck driver said, I think there's a Christian hospital not far away from here that might be able to do this for free. And sure enough, we were able to. He's able to walk.

His name is Andy, Angela. But his mom, when she was at the hospital, finally she's not cursed and she's literally having a burden off her back. And she said, now this is a place where God walks the earth. And it's like an embassy from the kingdom of God.

And once you get a glimpse of how good that is, it's magnetic. And so Jesus keeps trying to explain how good it is. And we become the people who throw parties now, I think, as believers, because we're the ones who aren't anxious, right? Everybody else is anxious and angry. We're not. We can throw the party and people can go, why are you so hopeful?

What is the deal with you believers? But we have to become a different sort of person, and our minds have to be transformed by what we're paying attention to, what we're dialed into, being able to tell ourselves the true things, giving thanks, arresting our stupid thoughts, our bad thoughts, immature thoughts, and go, nah, not going to think about that. Going to thank God for stuff. We become different. I love the story of the boy in your neighborhood that you threw the party for. Oh, yeah. So I'm an introvert.

My wife and I have become more party people. What I mean by this is like... I mean, I've been to your neighborhood. I've seen it. Yeah. I know where you live. Yeah.

Yeah. Tight little neighborhood with townhomes and stuff. Well, there's one guy who tried to organize a neighborhood walk in the neighborhood, and he, neat guy, young adult, has some special needs he's dealing with, brain injury and whatnot. He used a walker, and his way of speaking is impacted, but very outgoing. But he was always trying to get people to walk with him once a week. He called it Walk for Wellness.

Great idea. I drove by one time, and I saw him standing by himself out at the gathering place. So I started going for walks with him, and he liked music, like Dave and I do. I was like, what kind of music? You should come over, and we can jam. He just likes to sing. So he would, and we would sing all these classic rock stuff, whatever he wanted. Then he was sad because he's like, I finally have a friend, and my parents are moving. He lived with his parents, and I have to go with them.

I was sad too. I said, you know what? We're going to throw you a going away party for the neighborhood so that everybody can say goodbye. He's like, do you think anybody will come? I don't know.

I think so. So we put it on the neighborhood Facebook page, fully realizing this is a risk, but we're going to honor him. We got the streamers and the balloons and the cake and everything. It was just him and my wife and me for the first half hour.

He was fine. We were talking, laughing, having the cake. Then we had some neighbors, a mom and her daughter, which we'd asked, please come over.

They did. Then some people started coming, and we didn't know. They saw the Facebook thing, and they had met him walking down the street one time or whatever.

Pretty soon, our house was jammed, spilling out into the courtyard, out to the front street. He could not believe it. His parents came. They were not Christian people, they would say, not religious people. For him, it was quite the opposite, my friend.

But they had struggled with his disability and stuff. Why would this happen? His mom told me the next morning when they were pulling out, I saw them when I was walking the dog.

They were literally pulling out with a moving truck. She said, I thought a lot about God last night. Maybe why our son has what he has. Maybe it's actually a blessing to people. I said, it's totally a blessing to people.

It's a risk, right? Maybe nobody comes, but you make yourself vulnerable. When you realize you don't have to be cool, it's okay. If I throw a party, it's all right. We start throwing parties. There's a lawn care group of immigrants that comes through once a week. We threw a party for them one day.

I asked, can I provide lunch? We cranked Guatemala's top 50 on Spotify, had food, and our neighbors are driving by again. They're throwing parties for the lawn people.

That's not natural for me, but I think as we change, we would get more that way. You've got nothing to lose. All you can do is just say, I want his kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. In God's kingdom, the lawn people get a party, and they get thanked for working in the heat out there. That's a tough job.

But just thank you. That's all. What are the results from that? I don't know. God's in charge of the results, right? You just do your thing joyfully. This is a much lighter way to live. His way is restful.

His yoke is lighter. It's more fun. We laugh more. We become more childlike.

He told us, let your faith be like this. Well, kids laugh 11 times more than adults. That's a fact. So you become more childlike. You can laugh at stuff. People actually want to be around you. A lot of it's releasing that control, that anxiety and worry that we're almost addicted to and need to not be. And it can be crippling. It's living in freedom and joy to allow yourself to be able to dance because when we're heavy and the burden feels so unbearable, we can't dance.

No, and there's nothing better. I mentioned going to the dance party at the Cure Hospital in Niger. All these kids, different level of disabilities. On Thursday afternoon, the art room becomes dance party. These are kids at the hospital, different levels of healing.

Some are in wheelchairs, some are with canes, some walkers, some you just have to hold. You'll pick up a couple of little kids and dance around. They just crank the music and dance. There were four girls at the last one I was at, teenagers, all with a rare affliction that affects your face.

It disfigures your face as a teenager from malnutrition. And they had been totally isolated. Well, they get to the Cure Hospital where they're celebrated, told they're beautiful, and then they find each other. Four teenagers, they were laughing, giggling, playing, dancing. And there's nothing cooler than a dance party when no one's trying to be cool. Right?

Yes. Like you don't have to be cool. There's nothing better than a big party where no one is trying to be cool at all. Boy oh boy, I mean, I hope families are inspired really to do what you're doing, Brian. Just open your eyes, look around your neighborhood, and throw a party.

Yeah, you got nothing to lose. And if we can do this, I promise you can. This is not second nature for us. Nothing's better than a dance party where nobody's trying to be cool. What if we stopped trying to be cool and started focusing on the joy God can provide despite our circumstances? That'd be a different world, right?

Maybe you'd even have a different home. I'm Shelby Abbott, and you've been listening to Dave and Anne Wilson with Brant Hansen on Family Life Today. Brant is one of our favorites. Even though we're not supposed to have favorites, he's one of our favorites. And he's written a book called Life is Hard, God is Good, Let's Dance.

And what an appropriate way to end our time today with him and talking about that dance party. His book is going to be our gift to you when you partner with us today. So you can get your copy right now with any donation. You just go online to, and you click on the donate now button at the top of the page. Or give us a call with your donation at 800-358-6329. Again, that number is 800, F as in family, L as in life, and then the word today. Or you can feel free to drop us a donation in the mail if you'd like to.

Our address is Family Life 100 Lake Hart Drive, Orlando, Florida 32832. Now, what is the value of attention as a resource? I don't often think about that very much. And what kind of impact can it have on our lives? Well, Brant Hansen is back again tomorrow to talk about just that. On behalf of my friends Dave and Anne Wilson, I'm Shelby Abbott. We'll see you back next time for another edition of Family Life Today. Family Life Today is a donor-supported production of Family Life, a crew ministry, helping you pursue the relationships that matter most.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-16 06:59:03 / 2024-04-16 07:11:20 / 12

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