Why Worry?

As a child I used to sing the gospel chorus, “Why worry, when you can pray? Trust Jesus, He will be your stay. Don’t be a doubting Thomas, lean fully on His promise, Why worry, worry, worry, worry when you can pray?”[1]

But more often that I would like to admit, in my heart I would be singing “Why worry when you can fret?” Yes, I admit I have an issue with anxiety.

I thought about that last week when my area was under the threat of severe weather, including a pretty high risk of tornadoes. As I was sitting in my house watching the weather and wondering if this would be the day my life would be completely altered by an “act of God,” I was reminded of Matthew 6:27: “Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” And the answer of course, is no. In fact, Job 14:5 tells us that “A person’s days are determined; you have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed.”

Did you get that? God has already established exactly how long your life will be. You won’t increase that by healthy living, nor decrease it by unhealthy habits. Of course, the quality of your life may be affected, but not the length.

Not only that, Matthew 6 also explains the futility of worrying about losing your house or belongings. Jesus explained, “So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ Or ‘What shall we drink?’ Or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them” (Matthew 6:31-32).

So what are we to do instead? “Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself” (Matthew 6:33-34).

What happens when we turn over our fears and anxieties to the Lord—even those things that may indeed cause us harm or loss? Here is what God promises:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every 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).

Why can you trust the God who created the universe to care about your anxieties? Because He also promised, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7).

Amazing, but true! 

[1] As far as I can determine, this was written by John W. Peterson.


  1. Doreen Froese on April 10, 2021 at 2:55 pm

    Thanks for reminding me of the chorus “Why worry when you can Pray” that I also learned as a young girl. I will be singing that a lot now, especially in my role as caregiver to my 75 yr. old husband who has advanced Parkinsons. I am often stressed to the limit, but I am very thankful that he still can be at home, especially now during this Covid time. I am so thankful that God has given me good health.

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