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Killing Anxiety

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Steven Davey
The Truth Network Radio
March 3, 2021 12:00 am

Killing Anxiety

Wisdom for the Heart / Dr. Steven Davey

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March 3, 2021 12:00 am

Do you get a pit in your stomach when awaiting that diagnosis or that acceptance letter or that apology? Do you lose sleep sometimes? In truth, our bodily responses to external and internal pressures are inescapable. So when Paul tells us to get rid of anxiety, he isn't talking about physical ills; he's talking about spiritual ones. In a society that pours billions of dollars into medicating symptoms, Stephen takes us to the source of anxiety by giving us a remedy for the soul.

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In the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. And the peace of God. This piece doesn't come from you.

It is sourced from the very character of God is another gift of his extravagant praise as you share with God.

Every need and every request with surrendered Thanksgiving.

God shares with you his character of his character knows nothing of war yet that diagnosis or that acceptance letter or that uncomfortable conversation you need to have you lose sleep sometimes because of worry living a life that's worry free and marked by peace isn't something you can manufacture.

You can't simply force or will yourself into peace. So how can we experience peace well on this broadcast of wisdom for the heart organelle look at what it means to not worry and to live in peace are Bible teacher Stephen Dave returns to Philippians 4 with the message called killing anxiety. One author wrote it this way worries cast shadows on our future stubborn anxieties work like petty thieves in dark corners of our thoughts as they pickpocket our peace and kidnap our joy will set soon. Every Christian in here, young or old, is at risk. Christians are not immune from anxiety just because we have been eternally inoculated with saving the sovereign grace obsessed. I don't have anything I'll never worry now. In fact, when you get to the end of the Lord's sermon in Matthew 60 actually exit by saying that when he describes the subject of worry every day is filled with things to trouble you. That's the end of the sermon you will never master the serpent you will never outlive it.

You cannot out run it comes after you every day.

Some days more relentlessly than other days. You cannot tame worry you have to kill it over and over and over again when you think it's gone for good gets back. There is worries like weeds in my yard.

Guess what their back that there is anybody on the planet that had an excuse to be consumed by worry, it would be Paul the apostle act as he writes his letters, we would probably all forgive him for a verse or two says something like you know things haven't turned out in my life like I wanted that I expected. I asked you and all the other churches to pray for me that I would arrive in Rome with with an injured opportunity to refresh the church is to be refreshed that's spiritually productive ministry here I am on him under house arrest, Shane did either wrist 24 7 x 2 Roman guards that take shifts. God didn't answer me. Like I prayed.

Now I the churches by the way have abandoned me in Rome, my joy and my peace have been swallowed up. Pray for me. We would forgive him for instead what he writes is remarkable is an older man. So if you go back to his letter that were studying to the Philippian church and go to chapter 4 and you read him instead of writing these incredibly challenging, convicting words, if you're with us at our last study of verse four we saw how Paul wrote these commands he's he said rejoice in the Lord always did you get that again I will say, rejoice. But your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Make it your remember your resolution to be joyful. Make it your reputation to be a gentleman or a lady and don't forget the Lord is is nearby. Now Paul drops in. If you thought that was tough get ready another bombshell of a command verse, verse six be anxious for nothing. Be anxious for nothing.

This isn't an option for Christians who are you more mellow than the rest of us here for believers who are so tightly wound like you might be.

I certainly am more excitable or emotional. This is a command for every believer and and you notice he's going to deal with them in the subject is going to give them. By way of outline something to stop first thing he does is tell us all to stop something stop worrying you can you can render this text would really which only makes it all the more challenging Paul is commanding with his imperative this way saying do not under any circumstance, worry about anything.

Do not under any circumstance. Worry about and he leaves no loophole in the tax back the word Paul uses here for anxious or worried means to be pulled in different direction. It has the idea of everything you and I experience are our hopes pull us in one direction, but our fears pull us in another the word of God in our understanding of Scripture pulls us in one direction, but our minds and our hearts pull us in another constructive to track this word back to its English etymology the English word tracks back to any German route were again which means to strangle to choke and overtime were developed to mean mental strangulation being emotionally bound with anxiety. Now Paul, perhaps more than anybody knew that it wouldn't do any good. And we know it as well. Worry strangles our faith that it chokes off our praise. It it it crushes our courage. It silences our song.

It doesn't help you get ready for anything in life. If whatever you're worried about happens worry didn't prepare you for it and if it doesn't happen. Worry robs you of the joy that it didn't Vance have heard the old North Carolina evangelist. Now the Lord you say it rather homespun language. I love the CE would say this way. Worry is like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it never takes you and now everything I have said, we know right you're old enough in the faith where you know the worry is useless. We know that worry is distraught.

In fact, you probably even know that worry land you on the side of the enemy that whispers in your heart got his trusting, so you better take care of that. You better stay up at night over that you're on your own, you better start worrying we know the Philippian believers knew it to affect some of them may very well have personally heard Jesus preach that sermon a few years earlier, most devotionals sermons, you know they sorta stop there.

They prove the point that worry is a command seizing worry is commanded were to stop it and maybe you know if if I spend another 20 minutes. When I come away saying okay I want to decide to do a better job at stopping that I'm not going to do it in and in and get my knife ready it will kill Thomas. I'm ready we can pray the home. I love the way one author put it, worry is perhaps the greatest thief of the Christians joy but to tell ourselves to quit worrying will never catch this thief. That's because worry is an inside job battle has nothing to do with the circumstances of life. It is in stealing our joy because our life is worse off than someone else's. We got more problems more challenges than somebody else and that you find somebody with terrific challenges and you go to perhaps minister them and you leave having been ministered to me.

Look at Paul he writes this while these confined asks perhaps for a little slack in the chain so he can move his quill under house arrest. Unable to minister like he prayed the church with them.

He's he's going. He's heading for a trumped up court without bias temporary going to give it a death sentence, not too distant future and he's the one telling us to stop worry okay what Paul said. You're the one telling us. I will try to stop by going to try harder. Thank you so much for this verse we stop there lies a problem is it only says about it. Notice the next phrase be anxious for nothing, no notice, but in every thing, but in everything. Notice the contrast be anxious for nothing, but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Paul and in the language world begins with what we call a comprehensive negative. Don't worry about anything. But then he goes to this comprehensive positive pray with thanksgiving about everything. He doesn't just tell us something to stop. He tells us something to start you have to do both.

By doing which plane waiting matters the most. The left one, or the right, which was essential when they both are what you want to kill anxiety. You don't just stop and try harder to stop. You start another habit and you do both of them or it'll never fly, so this is what you stop the habit of worrying, but you have to start this. The practice of praying with thanksgiving. Now what Paul will do here is describe this communication with God and is going to use three words and I think they're instructive in the different nuances they bring souls look at them a little closer. The first word is prayer.

We talk to God because were interested in developing a friendship with.

We tell them things because we want him to know them from our perspective, although he knows them already. The second word Paul uses here is supplication. Your translation may repartition is not being redundant word refers to praying with a sense of urgency and you perhaps done that one of Peter's most effective persons pretty short Lord save me and the Lord pulled out of the water.

Paul use the word in this letter to the flipping is already busy and flipping believers were struggling with their faith or in intense difficult times and they prayed with urgency. The third word Paul uses here is request this word refers to simply bringing to the Lord any specific needs you might have bring them, bring them to the Lord. He knows them, bring them, make your requests. In other words, God desires that we we bring full disclosure to him. Full disclosure because we need to hear ourselves say the words and in that disclosure. We have the development of dependency and relationship and friendship.

So when I take my requests to him and you take your requests to him you are effectively acknowledging you are depending on him. Good to hear you say that right for you to hear yourself depend on the wonderful illustration of this. Recently a church planter wrote about learning to pray in a deeper way, is literally consumed with planning the church in suddenly being begun to think that this overtly, but depend on me he thought wasn't long before he couldn't sleep at night became consumed with worry and really distrust in the Lord anxious about the church. He writes I got a lesson from my son the other day and I never will never forget it.

He writes when we moved into our current house. I saved the heaviest piece of furniture for last the desk from my office as I was pushing the desk with all my might, across the floor when doing very quickly. My four-year-old son came over and asked if he could help assure so together we started sliding across the floor. He was pushing and grunting as we inched our way along. After a few minutes my son stopped pushing and looked up at me and said that you're in my way.

My way so I stepped back and he tried to push the desk by himself. Of course it didn't budge. And I realize that's what I've been doing larger in the way we push it up to me how easy it is to lose our focus and our perspective. She prayer has a way of getting it right again rehearse our dependence in that disclosure. I love what one linguist points either notice when Paul writes let your requests be made known to God that preposition to be rendered toward it pictures this orientation it points you back to God and others and refocuses the lead, it causes you look in the right direction.

We get so focused on things down here. Prayer orients us back toward God. We get troubled or enamored or worried about stuff down here prayer gets us reoriented toward God. We get the model down here on earth. Prayer constantly re-orients us toward heaven is at work now here in verse six, Paul has used three words to talk about communication with God in order to overcome worry, but he makes one condition make all your prayers and supplications requests have this attitude in its with thanksgiving Thanksgiving and here's the brutal truth without Thanksgiving. Most often, our prayer is spiritualized, complaining, our prayer list is nothing more than whining away from God and doing for us in how we really ought to have something different or something better why God's timing is off.

Our prayers are really the coach him on timing is in God, no.

Pray with this overarching spirit of Thanksgiving. Love the way Warren wears they said, look, even God the father enjoys hearing his children safe.

Thank every so often listened. This doesn't mean that everything we bring to God is something we gotta be thankful for and there's a misunderstanding is not saying he is and he is and saying well Lord of this anaconda. He's got me up to the knees. I just want to thank you for making snakes are so creative and so amazing.

No more Paul means he doesn't mean that everything you bring to God is something your thankful maybe breaking your heart he means everything you bring to God. You can thank him for overseeing you can thank him for strengthening you to walk through it.

You can thank him for planning to resolve it. One day, according to his will. You can, thanking him for directing it even though you can't see yet toward the perfect conclusion of his purpose for your life praying with thanksgiving means that you're willing to have God reshape your prayers so that you end up wanting what he wants when he wants author wrote about that verse in Matthew 21 verse 22. He said I heard a sermon on that when I was 10 years old. I believe I could pray I could get it.

I didn't understand that and I had to believe in God's purposes and his sovereign will. And when my prayers match that I certainly would. But even if I didn't, because it didn't match his will he make me more like his son learned obedience through the things he suffered many I heard the sermon son is ready to get us thrilled I was ready to apply it, he writes. I remember running outside of my little house that afternoon.

Standing on our driveway and closing my eyes real tight and praying God, I want to fly like Superman. I believe you can do it. I believe you can do it so I jumped and you take it from there. Love that all get off the ground and you take the rest of it is that I jumped 4 times never went anywhere, crushed, must've said it wrong. Or maybe God wasn't listening. Or maybe I didn't have enough faith. Or maybe I didn't believe enough or maybe I didn't deserve all those things we as grown-ups think Jesus taught his disciples to pray that I will be done. That is submissive gratitude because you are effectively thanking him that it's effectively going to happen right I will be done on earth as it is done in heaven. How is God's will done in heaven.

How do 100 million+ angels that John Saul respond to whatever God slowly with this agreement with Lord let me change a little bit there and by the way higher wages and more occasion.

The Angels will live to obey him to obey.

So Lord with whatever you're putting me through today give me that attitude of being willing to serve you as you lead me through this prayer is really another way of revealing whether or not we really plan to obey or want to. Maybe that's what we'll pray enough love what one author wrote what he said this, we can be confident that God will answer our prayer in exactly the same way we would want him to. If we knew everything he knew when we prayed half that we can be confident that God will answer our prayer in exactly the same way we would want him if we knew everything he knew when we pray only when we start praying without submissive spirit of Thanksgiving for the fact that he is in control over everything that we begin to stop worrying about anything. This is what you stop the habit of worrying. This is what you starts the habit of praying with thanksgiving.

Finally, this is what you can expect notice for seven and the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Watch this and the peace of God.

This piece, this serenity doesn't come from you. It isn't something you work out EEA that emanates from it is sourced from the very character of God is another gift of his extravagant grace as you share with God. Every need and every request with surrendered Thanksgiving. God shares with you his character and his character knows nothing of worry. This character knows nothing of anxiety so his peace becomes your piece this piece that is not natural. It is supernatural. In fact, Paul says it surpasses all comprehension when author put it this way transcends intellectual power human analysis human insight human understanding is superior to humans scheming in human devices and human solution since its source is the God's judgments are unsearchable and his ways are on that Romans 1133.

So the challenge of the Christian life is not worrying on how to eliminate every unpleasant circumstance or even attempt to understand them how to trust your infinite wise, powerful, gracious God, who will lead you through it.

Who lavishes his grace on us more than we can even comprehend or no since we cannot generate this piece during times of suffering or pain or confusion know this piece is a gift from God that is unwrapped when we go to him with full disclosure and independency trust him and he demonstrates his grace all over again one day at a time. Perhaps one moment at a time by giving us something of his character from the moment his peace can't help but wonder by the way, if Paul is making a play on words here on purpose as he is. He shifts in his seat, making the chains around his wrists rattle a bit, maybe causing the guards to stir from there. Afternoon nap. Paul writes here and the peace of God, will guard your hearts and minds. It's as if he says what I want you to know these guys here aren't guarding me. I don't looks like they're not guarding what is standing guard over me is the peace of God, the peace of God is guarding. Notice the text. My heart, that's what I'm feeling. It's guarding my mind that's what I'm thinking and impulses the peace of God will stand guard over you to. This is an audacious prayer. This is an audacious supernatural promise. Whenever you pray with thanksgiving, for God's purpose over everything.

Paul says you will not worry about anything more I stagger this audacious promise merely indicates how much I need to install worry how much I need to start praying with thanksgiving of the Puritan prayer was with this generations ago that reads heavenly father. My faith is in the my expectation is from the I accept my word. I yes to the will. I rely on my promise trust I Providence I love this phrase.

I cast my anchor in the port of knowing my pass present and future safely buying. I hope that very old rare is your prayer as well. You know when sailors want to hold the boat fast. They cast the anchor downward Christians on the other hand cast our anchor upward in prayer to a God who gives us peace. You're listening to wisdom for the heart. The Bible teaching ministry of Stephen Davey.

Today's message is called killing anxiety. We've taken this message and turned it into a booklet. It's a great resource that you can use to read again when ever you feel anxious today. This resource is available to you free of charge. You just pay the shipping cost. All you need to do is go to our website which is wisdom online.org. If you type killing anxiety in the search bar you'll find this booklet in our online store that's wisdom online.org, and the booklet is called killing anxiety.

That's all for today. Thanks for being with us on tomorrow's broadcast. Stephen has another lesson from this section. So join us then right here on wisdom


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