Breaking the Habit of Worry

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everyworry situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).

Can you imagine never being “anxious about anything?”  It seems like an impossibility – we all have worries on the job, in our homes, at school.  There are many times when the pressures and needs of life feel overwhelming. Surely there are many circumstances in which Christians cannot be happy, but we can always pray and rejoice in the Lord.

The busier we are, the easier it is to worry.  If we want to worry less, we need to pray more.  Prayer results in an indescribable and immediate sense of peace.  Christ’s peace allows us to continue with what we need to do, in the confidence and assurance that God will work everything out.

Unlike worldly peace, the peace of God “transcends all understanding.”  It is beyond man’s ability to comprehend.  Like soldiers assigned to watch over a certain area, God’s peace “guards the hearts and minds,” that is, the emotions and thoughts, of His children.  This peace is confident assurance in any circumstance (John 14:27).

True peace is not found in positive thinking, in absence of conflict, or in good feelings.  It comes from knowing that God is in control.  Our citizenship in Christ’s kingdom is sure, our destiny is set, and we can have victory over sin.  With God’s peace, we have no need to fear the present or the future.

The most effective way any believer can prepare for the stress of the day is to begin with God.  Spend time alone with Him and make your requests known to Him.  Tell God the issues and concerns weighing you down.  Anticipate the stressors in your schedule and ask God to give you peace in the midst of them. When stress comes, and it will, claim His promises.

Sin, fear, uncertainty, doubt, and numerous other forces are at war within us.  The peace of God moves into our hearts and lives to restrain these hostile forces and offers comfort in place of worry.  The end result of the Holy Spirit’s work in our lives is deep and lasting peace.  Jesus says He will give us that peace if we are willing to accept it from Him.  If your life is full of stress, allow the Holy Spirit to fill you with Christ’s peace.

To break the habit of worry, Paul’s advice is to turn our worries into prayers.  It is there that we gain the perspective and peace we need to handle the stress of life without sacrificing our relationships and health along the way.  The heavier the burdens, the longer it may take, but when we give our worries to God, we will feel relieved and at peace.

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About Pastor Joe Quatrone, Jr.

Pastor Joe has been serving in Christian ministry for 15 years. He desires to nurture and disciple believers, helping them experience a deeper level of commitment and faith in the Lord. He is the author of "Back to the Basics: A Guide for Christian Living." Through a commitment to servant leadership, he strives to proclaim relevant Bible truth, equip the saints for effective ministry, and build up the body of Christ. Married eleven years, Pastor Joe and his wife live in New Jersey and have two children.
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70 Responses to Breaking the Habit of Worry

  1. Lyn Leahz says:

    Isaiah 41:13, I am holding you by your right hand–I, the Lord your God–and I say to you, Don’t be afraid; I am here to help you.

    Funny, I prayed for the Lord to speak to me today through His Word, and this verse you typed above was what He gave to me. And here you have made a post about fear (worry, anxiety). Worrying and being afraid are along the same lines. But if we have total faith in God, we never have anything to fear.

    Actually, the Lord did speak to me a while back and said to me that worry is having faith in the negative..and that if people who worried/feared took that same faith and applied it to the positive, they could move mountains. People who struggle with fear, doubt, and worry are actually called to something great which involves strong faith–it could be the healing ministry, deliverance, etc. But people who struggle with fear and worry have exceedingly strong, powerful faith… It’s just that the enemy likes to come in and corrupt that gift which God has given us.

    So when we ‘believe’ in the bad things, we are putting our ‘strong’ faith more in the enemy than what we are God, which makes God upset. We are trusting the power of the enemy over our God who has promised us so many things.

    God bless you Joe, and your family.

  2. I like how you call worry a habit. It is a hard one to break. Thanks for this. Shared!

  3. Beautifully written! Thanks, Joe! Happy New Year!

  4. Pingback: Worry « DiscernIt

  5. shadowlilies says:

    Thanks for sharing this…always a good reminder…it made me take a deep breath of relief in the knowledge once again that God is in control and His peace is with us when we turn it all over to Him.

  6. johnedoe says:

    howdy lyn,….your quote just caught my “eye” (your quote) “People who struggle with fear, doubt, and worry are actually called to something great which involves strong faith”,……???????,…….when you say “people”, do you mean “believers”,….or,….”people as a whole?????”,…….i’m curious,……..

    • Lyn Leahz says:

      John doe..I mean people. When we are born, long before we call on Jesus, there are those of us who have been pre-ordained, and called. Matthew 22:14, For many are called, but few are chosen.” Unfortunately, many will never surrender, and will be seduced by the enemy, never fulfilling their calling in this life.

      So many of us are called to a ministry..it could be anything…from helping the poor, to the laying on of hands… but there are also many of us who are led astray..where the enemy comes to us early in life and perverts that calling. Some of us become stronger from these trials and shortcomings in our lives and find Jesus and repent..and become strong leaders in Him. While others choose to stay in the dark.

      God bless you John…hope I’ve answered your question. Take care and Happy New year.

      • johnedoe says:

        hi lyn,….(from your response;quote) “Matthew 22:14, For many are called, but few are chosen.”………….this scripture is a very very very popular scripture,…..isn’t it????? i have heard it, in one way or another, as far back as i can remember,……..but,….i would also like to share something that i have seen far too many times concerning this scripture as well,…….many “called”,….but few “chosen??????”……….when we view “called and chosen” as walking hand in hand, then “this” view “CAN”, and usually does, create within us a great angst/anxiety to influence us to “think” that this means that we, as individuals, somehow have to MEASURE UP,…………….(worry is in this category, by the way)

        for example,….we WERE CALLED”,….but since we “weren’t good enough”,…we WERE NOT CHOSEN,…..(ever witnessed this, or felt this in your own life and thoughts???)

        AS IF GOD IS “PICKING MEMBERS FOR A FOOTBALL TEAM, OR SOMETHING OF THE SORTS,………….(do we really feel that this is what god is doing???,….i, for one, do not),……”when and if” we view this scripture, which is a scripture “WHICH ABSOLUTELY MUST BE VIEWED IN IT’S TOTAL CONTEXT”, BY THE WAY,…as some kind of “process of elimination” definition,…..then we would all be lost and pretty much hopeless,…..(hhhhmmmmmm,…we ARE NOT hopeless)

        to “gain favor” to BE ON THE TEAM,……WE WOULD, BY NATURE, TRY TO “WORK” OUR WAY ONTO “THE TEAM”,…….would we not??? meaning, if we didn’t “make the team”,…then we would be left out,….OR,….LEFT BEHIND,………….in many differing views,….some (who fancy themselves as preachers and teachers) would “say” that this means that the “left behind” ones,….go to hell,……..(i.e.) “because” they weren’t chosen,………..this is “not” what that scripture is suggesting/saying/telling us,…at all,………….

        there are certain words in the bible which must be viewed for what they suggest,…..”ministry” is one,……..

        in your response, for example, you used the term “trials and shortcomings”,……..shortcomings is the perfect example of what i am sharing here now,…….shortcomings mean,….THAT WE “DO NOT” MEASURE UP,…………….too many times, the word “ministry”is viewed as a “works based” life,…………pride feeds on a works based life,…..and consumes the one who is “trying” (in vain) to measure up,………

        joe had written something about “priorities” in the last few days,…..when our simple priorities concerning our faith and attitude are in line,….then any king of “ministry” that we “may have” is taking place immediately as a “result/bi-product” of our faith,……does this make sense???

        many times, BUT NOT ALL TIMES,…our “trials” may not be trials at all,….rather,…..they are simply, and painfully stress and worry brought on by our trying to measure up,……….

        i “think” joe may have also written a recent piece about how does god correct us??? (sorry joe, i’m not sure if it was you???),…….many times he corrects us through the freewill he has given us, and allows us to see that we are hurting ourselves with the things/efforts/works that “we do”, and the way and manner in which we “do” (works implied) them,………..

        more later,…

        • Lyn Leahz says:

          I’m sorry John Doe..I don’t believe for a moment God thinks some of us aren’t good enough…He thinks we are…we just don’t believe it…that’s the problem..and then that is why some choose to live in the dark for the rest of their lives….they don’t believe themselves to amount to anything more when God loves each of us so much, personally, it’s unimagineable to our minds. And it is true…we are nothing without God…nothing at all…. but in Jesus Christ..because of what HE did for us…we are so much. God is waiting for us to see it…. the question isn’t then, are we good enough; rather, will we open our eyes and see?

          I have to go. I am spending time with family today. I hope you know what I mean. It’s all in how you look at things sometimes, John. If you look at things with a negative eye, you will find much fault..if you look at things with a postiive eye, you may find you have much to gain.

          I think you are an honest person you are seeking..that is why you ask..and that is a good thing. But, I also sense in you (as in MOST of us…we all do this..some more than others) a negativity..not necessarily toward others..just toward life. I pray you take that in the way I mean..I don’t mean it as a put down or an insult..like I said…. for any of us to ever say we’re never this way or that we’ve never been would be a lie.

          You’re looking for something…and for answers… which is a good quality…very good. Shows your willingness to learn. The only time it becomes bad is if God is answering you and you’re not listening or accepting. I personally don’t know how, if, when He has answered you….but you know deep, deep in your heart.

          God bless you John, and love in Christ to you always!!!! I have to go..Peace!

          • johnedoe says:

            question for later,….based on what i have written,….do i come across to you,…(or anyone else here),….as an “atheist/agnostic/non believer?”,………no hurry for an answer to this one lyn. enjoy your day,………..

        • johnedoe says:

          and also,….lyn,….your quote here “I’m sorry John Doe..I don’t believe for a moment God thinks some of us aren’t good enough…

          just to try to get a “conversation” clear between you and i,……”I “NEVER”,…I REPEAT “NEVER” SAID THAT GOD THINKS SOME OF US AREN’T GOOD ENOUGH,…..(my “view” just the opposite of what you responded to me with)……..okey dokey???,………..

        • Joe Quatrone, Jr. says:

          The parable of the wedding banquet is a great story! Thanks for reminding me of this important parable. I expect to write about it in a few days and would like to have your feedback when it is up.

          I started a new series, “The Parable of Jesus”: http://joequatronejr.wordpress.com/category/parables.

      • Rita Palmer says:

        HI Lyn. I have studied Predestination. The Bible talks about how God called us from eternity past. The word Predominate means “to mark out beforehand” and refers to God’s determining in eternity past whatever comes to in history. The entire Bible is Predestination. God planned out the history of the world. We have Prophets telling us what will happen in the future.
        Ephesians 1:11 “In him, according to the purpose of him who accomplishes ALL THINGS, according to the counsel of HIS WILL,
        12 we who first hoped in Christ, have been destined and appointed to live for the praise of His glory. 13 In Him you also, who have
        HEARD THE WORD OF TRUTH, the Gospel of your Salvation, and have believed in Him, WERE SEALED (all who had hope in Christ) with the promised Holy Spirit, which is the guarantee of our
        INHERITANCE and we acquire possession of it, the praise of His glory.”
        Also Romans 9:11 “thou they were not yet born, and had done
        nothing , either good or bad in order that GOD’S PURPOSE OF ELECTION might continue, not because of works, BUT BECAUSE OF HIS CALL.”
        Predestine means ‘to mark with boundary beforehand.”
        The word, PREDESTINE is used six times in the entire New Testament and five times in Paul’s epistles. Paul indicates the
        believer’s salvation is rooted in eternity past with the predestinating
        work of God. Other similar words are:
        FOREKNOW (Romans 8:29, 11:2) Foreknow “emphasizes not mere foresight but an active relationship between the one who foreknows and those who are foreknown.”
        ELECT (Eph. 1:4 and 1 Thes 1:3) “To call out.”
        The blessings of the Ephesians 1:3 are realized by the believer because God chose the believer in eternity past. God’s choice emphasizes He chose the believers for Himself!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
        ADOPTION
        ADOPTION was the result of God’s predestination of believers in eternity past.
        CALL – refers to God’s effectual call to salvation (Romans 1:1, 7; 8:28) It is the CALL OF GOD THAT ENABLES A PERSON TO BELIEVE. This term is unconditional election (God chose us without any merit on our part).
        SOVEREIGN COUNSEL OF GOD
        God acts. Ephesians 1:11. Not only does God act sovereignly with regard to securing the believer’s salvation, but God works all things – all history is consummated according to the SOVEREIGN WILL OF GOD.
        FINALLY –
        The ultimate source of predestination is the SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD. . The purpose of predestination is salvation and the issue of its service. Predestination does NOT OVERRIDE HUMAN

        RESPONSIBILITY. As Lyn said, we are responsible to accept God’s call or not.

        • Lyn Leahz says:

          Amen Rita. God made the end before He made the beginning. Ultimately, everything happens as God wills. We choose our own path..but no matter what path we choose, the ultimate end is in God’s hands.

  7. Rita Palmer says:

    I have a question about prayer. I do pray and I use scripture, but I am
    not sure how to pray. Do I list my concerns and say them during the
    prayer. I have been praying a long long time, and sometimes it
    seems I am not doing it right. Years and years go by, and I know
    God has done many things for me, but the big concerns never
    go away. I know that I must pray for wisdom and I know that God is
    in control and I trust His will, but it is a stumbling block for me regarding
    prayer. I talk to God all day long, and I ask HIm questions, and
    He has helped men hundreds of times. I don’t know if any of this
    makes sense and I read on here about people who are used to praying and do it a lot.
    People always say you don’t receive because you don’t ask, and
    that is ridiculous. Of course people ask; they ask and ask and
    ask and also ask for God’s will be done. Now if I am answering my
    own question, I would say, just keep doing what you are doing
    one day at a time, and God will reveal His will for me. Right?

  8. Excellent! Well said. I just read a great Christian novel which focused on a non-Christian woman who asked the Christian one, “Why do you say you have faith and then worry so much? Don’t you believe God will take care of this?” By our actions we show our true faith, don’t we?

    And there are a few I would love to forward this to, because worry is a great cause of weight gain and of course those are my target audience. Thank you for this “keeper.”

    Happy New Year to you and yours!

    • Rita Palmer says:

      Ellie, I see what you are saying about worry. yes I worry about weight gain. The older we are and the less active we become, the more the pounds pile on. It is a constant battle. We want to stay healthy, but the weight causes health problems. it is a vicious circle. I have found that Weight Watchers helps quite a bit. This is a diet that must be followed rigidly. You are allow 28 points and cannot go over them. Lots of fruit, vegetables and lean meat and of course anything else you want to eat, but the points add us quickly. Well, Happy New Year dieting everyone. I have made my resolutions and I am sticking to em!!

  9. johnedoe says:

    hi there,….this is for miss rita,….rita,…..this, (what you just shared above),…to me,…is the single greatest and most honest thing that you have ever written (and i have read many of the things that you’ve written),…..i just wanted you to know,….you are showing an honesty and even a vulnerability, which is one of the single most difficult things to do for any of us as human beings!!!!!,……..i may share a tad more with you in a while if you don’t mind,…….????,…..

  10. johnedoe says:

    hi miss rita,…the bible “absolutely tells us all” that we CAN PRAY WRONGLY,….but,….this is very important for god to share this with us,….for quite a few different reasons!!!!! very “good and godly” reasons!!!!,…………a loose translation of “one such scripture” is this,……it says “WE ASK (pray),…BUT WE DON’T GET WHAT WE “PRAY” FOR,………..have you ever read this, rita?….

    the bible (god’s word) continues with,…….THE REASON THAT YOU DON’T HAVE IS BECAUSE YOU ARE PRAYING SELFISHLY,………FOR ALL THE “WRONG” REASONS,………

    these are so crucial for us all,…..if they weren’t, as i said, there would be no godly reason for them to be included in the bible,…….correct???

    god wants us all to grow and be blessed, and strong, and joyous, etc,etc,…….this is “his nature and will for us”,………………..check these scriptures out and ponder them in their whole context, and you will find all the greatness which is waiting for us all,………….

  11. Lyn Leahz says:

    @John Doe:
    Not at all. You come across as someone seeking truth. And I don’t know about anyone else, but the way I take you…sometimes…when I write something here…is that you read things into what I write/comment that I do not say or mean…and they are usually along the negative lines. I kind of feel hesitant at times to comment on Joe’s blog because at times I feel like I’m feeding the bear…if that makes any sense. I don’t think you mean to do that at all…it is what it is.

    I just try to be honest with what I have experienced..which is a lot for my age… I was a teenage run a way (several times), rebellious, partook in witchcraft, adultery, fornication, paganism and all sorts of things. Never got into drugs, although I did try pot when I was younger…didn’t like it.

    I’ve been there, done that..and I have learned the hard way. I don’t mean this to diminish anyone else’s experiences or sufferings, as our own is always the worst to us in a sense.

    It’s great to learn, and none of us are 100% correct on all that we believe…there has to be areas where we are all somewhat misinformed or wrong..the only one who was perfect was Jesus. However, whenever you comment somewhere and someone always seems to find fault in what you say, and it’s usually not even what you were saying that they are finding fault with, it just seems like more of a stress than anything to even comment to begin with. If that makes any sense. ;-) If I’m always coming across wrong, I should stick with just posting on my blog and not commenting. I do have a high stress life. Four kids. A job. Editing three books, one with a deadline (thomas Nelson called me a few weeks ago wanting to know when I’d have the first book in the series ready), managing three blogs, which are a blessing…. there’s good and bad stress..but both affect you the same way. I also struggle with unknown sickness…where my life has been greatly diminished. It happened when I lived in a place with a mold problem. Doctors are not educated well in the areas of mold toxicity. My BP is always very low, I get very dizzy, there is nothing I can hardly eat or drink that does not make me swell up, including my throat..I live on Benadryl and still don’t get relief.. I awake every morning feeling like a person with the worst hangover.. I am a very active person who lives healthy, yet have this problem I only drink coffee (very little, and black) and water. I can’t even drink tea because it has mold in it (the tea leaves are dried).

    I have read about mold disease and it’s not pretty. You suffer so much you pray for death, but you don’t receive it…eventually, you die earlier than you would..and I don’t want to die. I have kids. However, as bad as it has gotten, and the fact that doctor’s don’t test you for something like this..and all of my bloodwork and tests come back great…I can get no medical help. This problem, however, has caused me to totally, one hundred percent have to depend upon God. I have to pray over every little thing….over everything that I put on my body, and everything that goes into my mouth. I have to ask His permission to eat or drink anything, or to go anywhere…

    I can’t even go to church because people wear perfume..I get a headache, my face swells, and my throat. I am in a prison, in a sense. But see, look at the good that comes out of my suffering? God isn’t making me suffer, for whatever reason, He is allowing it. It has humbled me, brought me to repentance, and strengthened my faith in Him even more. See this suffering I go through…each day..every day…with no reprieve..yet my faith is strong and I love God just as much. I don’t blame Him..I blame the fact that the flesh is corrupt..and our flesh ultimately belongs to the enemy until he is finished once and for all. Since the fall of man, the flesh became evil and corrupt. This is why bad things happen to innocent people… the spirit of them belongs to God, but the flesh belongs to the world..thus as to why when we die, our flesh goes back to the earth. Praise God we get a new, perfect body when we are redeemed! If a child dies, or one who knows Jesus dies, the spirit belongs to God. For those who do not know Jesus, the spirit belongs to Satan because that unsaved person has chosen Satan as their master. We can only serve one of two masters: Satan or YHVH. So hell is our choice. God does not send us there…Satan does through deceit, and we beleive his lies.

    With all due respect…I don’t really have a lot of time to debate… and I know there is good, healthy debate..and I know I’m sounding like I must never like a challenge..challenges are awesome..they teach us. It just sux when it’s all the time.

    God bless. Have to finish getting ready for the day..it’s late already! Hope you are having a wonderful day, my dear friend! Praying for everybody always, pray for me too! I need prayers ALWAYS.

  12. Rita Palmer says:

    Thank you Lyn. I am sorry for your pain. But I feel it in my heart. It is true for sensitive people (ME) to view negativity as a rebuke and a put down when someone YELLS AT US, or says ” I am selfish for all the wrong reasons” when I ask about prayer. Prayer is sealing the bond with our Holy God and Jesus Christ. It is opening the heart and soul for healing.
    No one should say something negative to others when they post something sensitive on this blog. I agree, but we all different and have different ideas about how to achieve answers that we seek. I lived in the shadow of death for many years, but I knew that God walked with me. I didn’t know how or why, but He worked miracles in my life, or I would have been dead. I will say this, that when we look at statements that are negative, it is not
    directed toward us, but at those who make the statements. A lesson learned today. God bless you and all those seeking Him in their daily life.

    • Lyn Leahz says:

      Thank you Rita. God bless you. Psalm 23…though I walk in the shadow of death, i will fear no evil, for you are with me… Psalm 91, the prayer of protection.. and Psalm 27:1, The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
      2 Timothy 1:7, for God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind….

      The night the power went out this passed summer, several months ago…I was literally awaken feeling like I was dying. I started pacing the house praying…as I walked away, the feeling went away, but would within moments catch up with me. I kept praying and praying. The Lord told me to imagine Him lying with me holding me, and He gave me a scripture not to be afraid..as soon as I imagined this and spoke that scripture, I was able to go back to sleep. I believe it was a spiritual attack.

      It seems the more I do for God, the more I suffer in the flesh. My worst days in the flesh are my best days in the Spirit of truth..when I have really spoken God’s Word, or led someone down the right path..the devil gets really mad and attacks me..but I just give God praise and Glory during these attacks because it pleases God, and angers the enemy even more. Though I suffer, I am happy to make the enemy mad.

      • Rita Palmer says:

        I understand the scripture because I lived it and was helped along by a pastor and a church of wonderful people. God kept me just close enough for His protection, while the life as I knew it had ended. I was in His perfect light and love. God has showed us what persecution is in the Bible. I don’t have the scripture, but I am sure those He loves the most, suffer the most. I would be nothing without Him. What you say about the Hurricane and lights going out was affecting many people. Yes, I have felt the devil and I know how he works, but I just keep plugging away at staying close to God. I am sure the pain we have suffered and are suffering, is what keeps us close to God. Nobody can take away your relationship with God!! Nobody. I made my choice and I will let nothing stand in my way. I have fought the battle, and will stand protected with God’s armor upon my breast.

        I have heard that all negativity has a boom a rang effect! It goes out, and of course comes back. When I am negative, I ask forgiveness. Thanks for the conversation Lyn. God bless you in the New Year and keep you close to His heart in love and peace.

        • Lyn Leahz says:

          I must mention to you that for those three days the power was out, it was over one hundred degrees here. But the greatest thing happened that night….before the enemy was chasing me around my house in the middle of the evening..by candlelight, the Lord had given me a prophecy…which you can read here: http://lynleahz.com/2012/07/01/an-urgent-prophetic-warning-from-god-given-me-june-29-2012/ And then after I received this (I couldn’t post it because I had no power..I hand wrote it and published it after the power was back on a few days later..) is when I had the experience I previously explained.

  13. Joe Quatrone, Jr. says:

    I just got through reading all the comments on this post. There is good dialogue happening! There are many things I want to say in response, but I need time to type. For now, I will leave all of you with a short, general response, which I hope will speak to everyone in some way:

    Both Christians and non-Christians are interested in the future. Everybody has questions. Some of us are motivated by curiosity, others by fear and anxiety. The answers to “some” of our questions will remain a mystery, but “certain” answers have been revealed in the Bible.

    I would add a word of caution to anyone who attempts to study prophecy or the “finer” points of doctrine. While we cannot know everything about the future, we can know certain things. In our attempts to discern what the Bible says, we must be careful our conclusions come only from the truth of Scripture and not our own interpretations. Only God and His Word are infallible, not you or I.

    However, I am certain of this: if we are believers, God will provide for us today and tomorrow. Whatever the future holds, God is in control. With that in mind, we have nothing to fear.

    As you are waiting for my reply, here are a few older posts of mine which I hope you will read:

    Consequences – http://joequatronejr.wordpress.com/2012/08/04/consequences-2

    What Happens When I Die? – http://joequatronejr.wordpress.com/2012/06/30/what-happens-when-i-die

    Pride vs. Humility – http://joequatronejr.wordpress.com/2012/05/07/humility-vs-pride

    Thanks for bearing with me!

    Joe

    • Joe Quatrone, Jr. says:

      “Self-directing people don’t produce fruit for The Lord.”

      Who is directing your life?

      • Rita Palmer says:

        Hi Joe! My life is in God’s capable hands. He directs my ways and speaks to me through my tears. I try to stay out of His way, but I am just a servant seeking knowledge and wisdom and praying for His will in my life. That is all I can do. I assume “Self-directing people don’t produce fruit for the Lord” means instead of God directing our way, we are building stumbling blocks that keep good things from happening to us. What those are,
        i do not know, but I will keep looking.

          • Rita Palmer says:

            This is true. I like to study Theology, so I want to know more, which leads to many things that God would determine, not me or anyone. But, there is enlightenment in things we would not even think about. These things which man has written, are not something to argue about but to
            think about, and enjoy the scriptures.

    • Lyn Leahz says:

      Amen, Joe. God will only reveal what He wants us to know if He has a purpose in it. Some things will be a mystery until we are kneeling at His feet. None of us will EVER have all the answers, nor will any of us ever be one hundred percent correct in everything….only the Holy Trinity and those who are home with the Lord in heaven know all the answers…and even those who are in heaven don’t know ‘everything’. The devil doesn’t know everything either…he had ideas based on his smarts from all the years he’s been around…but he does not know either.

      God bless you!

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  16. Rita Palmer says:

    I find that Paul was truly a gifted and humble man. In Philippians 10:11 He said, “I want to know Christ and the power of His Resurrection and the fellowship of SHARING HIS SUFFERINGS, becoming like Him in his death, and so, to attain the Resurrection from the dead.” This verse essentially means that by wanting to know Christ more and live life by faith, we
    are attempting to do His finished work. Meditating on the words of the scriptures every day, prayer and thinking of positive things that help
    others to find less worry and peace in their lives, brings a feeling of
    contentment and love for the human race. So many people do not
    have anyone who would listen to them or offer a word of encouragement
    that when someone reaches out to them, and says “Hi, I know your pain, or Hi, how are you today, or “Is there something you need? we step out of ourselves, and do the work of the cross.
    I was suffering, but my nephew who is very compassionate, asked me why I don’t smile so much anymore, opened the flood gates so I could release some of my pain and unhappiness. What joy I felt knowing
    somebody cared about me. I let it all out, and was not rebuked for my feelings, or told “tomorrow will be better.” I was given a gift. A lovely gift, that I was not expecting, and it filled me up with love again and hope.

  17. Hmmmm…Worry and Prayer… At one point in my Christian walk another implied that I wasn’t trusting God enough and that ‘worry’ should not be part of a Christian’s life. However I learned that ‘concern’ was an acceptable term or emotion…I believe that it is one and the same….and Christians and Non-Christians alike are prone to it.

    I believe that of course we should take it in prayer to the Lord…However I don’t think worry can be eliminated from our lives….It is and ongoing process and I don’t think we should feel guilty for worrying or ‘being concerned over situations. I’m not sure about those that worry being more gifted or having a ministry than those that don’t though..

    Rita About prayer…something helped me once when I read it and that was that there can be several components to prayer…..worship,thankfulness,intercession for others and our own petitions. That helped me to realize God wasn’t in Heaven only to receive a ‘grocery list of requests’… Having said that though I believe in our point of deepest need He understands sometimes we just need ‘help’ and therefore honors all requests even one word…I also learned that He answers in His way and His time and it doesn’t always coincide with ours.

    • Lyn Leahz says:

      Excellent point, writerwannabe. We can’t avoid worry, and there is a difference between worry and concern. As Christians, we should be on guard and be wise. When we face worry, as you said, we should take it to the Lord. Amen! ♥ Especially if it is an unnatural, obsessive worry, which leads to anxiety dissorders.

      • Rita Palmer says:

        Hi writerwabbabe 763. I am a writer, and an author. My book is on Kindle – Amazon.com. It took me about a year to finish it. They publish for free. I am working on my second book, and it is slow
        going, but I know it will be done eventually. I had set a standard for this book the same as the last, but this book is not about me, and therefore takes more thinking. I worry that it will be thought of as dumb and nobody will read it. But, I also know people really liked my first book, so I have put that worry aside.

        All your suggestions are really good. But my question is, how do you know these things work. Have they worked for you in your life. Have the prayers and intercessions and praise worked for you in the things that you want and need?

        I do not know if there are any secrets to answered prayers. I do know that it is God’s will that answers prayers. All the praying, pleading, bargaining and asking..sometimes go for years and years without an answer.

        Through this blog and all the good people, I am have less and less worry and anxiety. It is good to talk to others and find out what they did and try out different things. It has been a learning experience for me here under Joe’s tutelage. He is a very kind,
        loving and compassion pastor and minster for the Lord.

        • Thanks for asking Rita…has it worked in my life?…Those things I mentioned have brought me to a realization of the Holiness that I am in the presence of while praying…

          I don’t think there are any secrets though to answered prayers as it is what and when or if the Lord believes my request is in His purposes for either myself or for the person that I may be praying for. Definitely at some point …either the prayer is answered in ‘fact’ or I realize that for ‘that’ time it is not evident.

          When I pray continuously and I know it is in God’s plan ..for eg salvation for some loved one I remember as scripture says ‘to keep knocking’ and ‘to pray without ceasing’ and I have the assurance that the prayer will be answered again in His timing and I have a peace during the waiting period.

          I hope that helps to explain what I believe…Diane

          • Rita Palmer says:

            Diane, Yes, I understand. I have often wondered about worry. I worry about my children being saved. I also don’t know if I pray for their salvation, that God will save them. I think maybe that they must do the seeking for God, and He will answer them. The Holy Spirit searches the heart of the person to see if he or she loves God. Sometimes, I feel that the Holy Spirit who is living inside me knows me and knows my desires before I do. Joe told us that God is in control, and not to worry so much about the things we cannot change. God will work on our behalf because He loves us. There are so many things that we do not know about and the evil of Satan and his legions, that it might be possible that the angels are very busy taking care of all of us now. So many things can go wrong. So many people have evil intent against others. Staying close to God, praying the Bible and believing in a Holy God and His Son Jesus Christ keeps me going. Plus, this blog is very helpful. I chose this blog because Joe is a pastor. I have seen other blogs that were not for me. So this is where I am and this is where I will stay. God bless you this New Year with grace and peace.

            • When I pray for the salvation of loved ones as do you for your children…I am comforted by the fact that the Holy Spirit will work in their hearts and minds and I speak about the things of God when I get the opportunity..There is a scripture or two that speak about ‘thy and thy household will be saved’ I know they won’t be saved because I am but because I pray and the work of the Holy Spirit I am confident that they shall be also….

              The Holy Spirit does believe I think but they also ‘woo’ the hearts of those being prayed for. Those are my thoughts and while others may disagree, one must go on that which is put on their heart….Just some thoughts …Diane

            • Rita Palmer says:

              Here is some scripture that says, we should pray for our children’s salvation because God wants families to go to heaven. I only brought up this subject because I have been praying for my children and their salvation for many many years. But our time is not God’s. Here
              is what I found.
              You will need to keep trusting the Lord for your children, and since you know it is His will, and as you are persistent He will answer your request, in His perfect timing. We do need to have faith though, as was pointed out by Jesus.

              James, the half brother of Jesus, in his book says, “But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” (James 1:6-8)

              We need to make sure we are right with the Lord ourselves and make sure our sins are confessed if we want answers to our prayers for our children’s salvation. “If I regard iniquity (unconfessed sin) in my heart, the Lord will not hear.” (Psalm 66:18) “Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” (James 5:16)

            • Those are wonderful scriptures…and whenever I find the seed of doubt in creeping in my mind I remember that Jesus said all we need is faith the size of a mustard seed and then I am comforted because I know that I definitely have that amount and I believe more….Diane

            • The last paragraph …the first sentence I meant to say..The Holy Spirit I believe….thought I clarify..Diane

  18. There was a joke that “worry” was my mothers middle name and that I inherited it from her! But praise God, it is no longer consuming me although it still pops up every now and then and I do find prayer is the best defense to protect myself from it..

  19. ogdq says:

    Reblogged this on jokondotnet and commented:
    Joe, I enjoyed this post greatly. it comes at a time that I needed to hear it.

  20. Rita Palmer says:

    I think the women used to say that they worry the bread dough, they worry the kids to school, they worry the husbands health, they worry the dinners on time..and so on. Our moms in the golden days had so much to do for their family. They took on the whole thing without a single complaint. They did the laundry in those wringer washers and hung it to dry in the bathrooms during the winter. They washed all summer long and hung out the laundry on the back yard line. They fed, clothed, worked, and made sure every birthday had a cake, and every Christmas had some gifts. The women of the golden days deserve our most high respect for all their sacrifice in taking care of their family, helping their neighbors, the church
    and more. I pray they have found peace in heaven and all their worries are over while they look down on their children and grand and great grand children from heaven. God bless the women in this world

    • johnedoe says:

      I LIKE THAT, RITA,…..

      • Rita Palmer says:

        I do too John. The by gone days were amazing. Parents during the depression worked so hard to put meals on the table and make sure their kids graduated from school and stayed out of trouble. The difference today is kids have so much information, and not all of it is good. Sometimes both parents work, and the child is left on his own too long. Women still worry, but the list is broader and time is taken up with more activities that do not include faith, alone time with the children and husband, that everyone lives separate lives. I am grateful for the lessons learned back in the golden ages of old, and our parents who did what had to be done for their families.

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  22. Rita Palmer says:

    I was worrying these past months. And, I began to listen. I listened to Joe, and those who post on this blog. I listened even more to my heart and little promptings from Jesus Christ to move forward and stop doing what I have been doing, like putting up roadblocks. When I began again to read this blog, I could see better, and I knew there were things I should do, but had not been doing. I can blame it on the devil, but I blame it on myself. So, instead of worrying about myself, I wrote up a Prayer Book. There are scriptures, and questions and prayers, to help me begin my quest for God to help or heal me. I feel confident He will do so, and my mind is at peace.

  23. neatnik2009 says:

    I have learned via experience that concern can be healthy if it leads to productive actions but that worry always leads to higher stress levels and other negative results.

  24. I heard it said once, Worry is like paying interest on a loan you do not owe.

  25. Pingback: Do Not Let Anyone Steal Your Joy, Your Happiness, Your Peace. « Energy of the Heart

  26. omitusa says:

    Maybe if we didn’t ”stress” ourselves to worry, we would have lived the kind of life God purposed for us- a happy life

    • ritap24 says:

      The Garden of Eden was the only life that was perfect. Once sin came into the world,
      everything changed. But Jesus came down from heaven and died on the cross,
      for our sins so we may be forgiven. The choice is ours, to either believe in Jesus Christ,
      His death, burial, resurrection. or not. We are not meant to live in a state of happiness, but to live in service to a Holy God, who will bring us into His Kingdom. The lives of many who have suffered, have turned into one of joy knowing that their suffering was a promise for everlasting life with a Savior, who lived, suffered and died for them Paul found joy in his sufferings, knowing that he would die for Christ. I count my blessings and thank God for all things good, and He does the rest. :)

      • Joe Quatrone, Jr. says:

        This is very true, Rita. The life of Job is a prime example. I was actually talking about this with two friends earlier today. “God gives and takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.”

      • ritap24 says:

        Thank you. My last statement “I count my blessings and thank God for all things good” should have read, ” I thank God for all suffering and things good” as I know that when I
        am suffering for Christ. Romans 8:17 “And if children, then heirs, heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with Him (Jesus Christ) that we may be also glorified together. 18 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” Also, Philippians 2:27
        “For indeed he was sick nigh unto death, but God had mercy on Him and not on Him only, but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow.”
        1 Peter 4:13 “But rejoice, inasmuch as you are partakers of Christ;s sufferings; that when His glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.”
        This then is the happiness we speak of…in 1Peter 4:14 “If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, HAPPY are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you!!!”

  27. Pingback: God Provides | Quality of Life MinistriesQuality of Life Ministries

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  29. blodge1 says:

    I find that singing uplifting hymns and choruses helps. One great hymn that helped me today starts with ‘O Lord, my God, when I in awesome wonder, consider all the works thy hands have made’. I have been feeling discouraged lately and singing this hymn reminded me of God’s greatness and his omnipotence. If he can Earth and the universe, he can take care of little old me!
    I find sometimes that prayer is difficult when I am particularly stressed. Actually, I remember when our youngest was born very premature and we did not know whether he would live. I could not pray about it, nor could I really talk much about it; and indeed probably did not pray about it in the normal way. However, I believe that the Spirit groans on our behalf and prays to the Father on our behalf when that happens. Certainly, he must have done so because I sometimes shy from praying about a situation if it is too tough to contemplate potential awful outcomes. Now that same child is 18 years of age! Praise God!
    So, do believe that if you worry and find it difficult to pray, the Spirit himself will intercede for you.

    • ritap24 says:

      Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

      I think that what God is saying here is that we are to lay our troubles at Jesus feet. Praying to Him for his divine will to be done and thanking him. As we present our requests to God, the peace of God, which is Jesus Christ will guard your heart and mind.

    • Praise God we have a faithful Intercessor on our behalf!

      • ritap24 says:

        Amen. Yes we have. I have new news about where i will be living after I move from here. It is a dream come true. All my prayers answered. Now all I have to do is wait till my daughter and her family have their home sold… I will tell you more later.

  30. blodge1 says:

    Joe, the Holy Spirit is a blessing indeed! I think what I was trying to say, Rita, is that sometimes circumstances are so overwhelming that is it difficult to articulate feelings that are somehow damped down, perhaps out of fear that they might run rampant. I don’t think I ever felt NOT at peace with our son’s premature birth. I think that I felt numb in that aspect and therefore carried on caring for him because the actions and business of those actions helped to occupy any time or space there were to think about the unthinkable. P.S. Don’t know if I am making sense.

    Anyway, that is now long past and I am simply grateful that he is well. Now, if only our sons would turn to Christ and become Christians, I will feel so blessed indeed. This is what I am praying for at present where they are concerned.

    • ritap24 says:

      I have been praying from my daughter and son to become Christians. But sometimes God has a reason for waiting. Maybe there will be something during their lifetime that is so overwhelming that they have to reach out to God. I pray that they never have to experience anything. But it is God’s will to call them, and His will be done in all things. I trust that God knows his business and I know that I went through a horrible time in my life where I thought I was living in another world, and only could count on one day at a time. Until I was ready, and God called my name, I had no idea what it was all about. The gifts of wisdom and knowledge to know Him. It was the most exciting gift for me to know that he walked with me when I was down and out and He wanted me to join Him in heaven. Amazing Grace, isn’t it?

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