Joyce Meyer - Don't Worry, God Is in Control
I just wanna tell you, when we're talking about worry, that one of the things you can do, when you're worried, is just really get it, get some good worship music on and get into God's presence and get your mind off of the stuff that's tormenting you. You know, when I stopped, we were talking about how worry is the fruit of pride. And I'm gonna try to just start with that again. My husband has something that he says which I think is good, "When you have a problem do your responsibility but cast your care". See... and a lot of people do the opposite they worry and don't do the responsibility. How many people if they have a problem just quit doing everything they should do that's right? They don't go to church. They don't keep their commitments. They, you know, murmur and complain and get on the phone and talk to everybody they can about their problem.
And so, there's no problem that God can't solve. No problem. He can solve any problem. Now, sometimes, just to be honest... we all need to be honest with ourself, if we wanna get help. Sometimes, especially, let's take like finances, you know, there's probably just a tremendous amount of pressure to not ever have enough money. But a lot of that we create ourselves by overspending. And sometimes if you've made a big enough mess yourself, it might take you a little while longer to get out of it because if God just comes and rescues us every time we act foolish, then we won't learn anything. And Dave and I had some very lean years financially, but I will tell you that not once were we not able to pay a bill.
So, I do believe that God will always meet your need. He may not meet all your wants right away, but he will meet your needs. And as I said, worry is the fruit of pride, it's us trying to figure out what we can do to solve our own problem. And God wants us to always be leaning on him. And so, what are some of the things that you can do? Because we're not real good at just sitting around doing nothing. And I think people think to wait on God means to just sit and do absolutely nothing. But that's not really true. It's to do what you can do, but trust God to do the things you can't do. For example, if you need a job. Well, don't just sit in your house and pray for God to get you a job. Your part is to actively and aggressively look for a job. Put in applications, call places, every day, every day, every day. Show yourself faithful. And maybe you're looking for a certain kind of job, but you might have to take, you might have to humble yourself enough to say, "God, I'll do any kinda job until you help me get the job that I want".
I've heard people say, "Well, I'm not gonna take a job until I get one that is really good use of my skills". Well, that's not humility either. We need to be willing to do anything we need to do to support ourselves and our families while we're waiting on God to bring the right thing into our life. So, when you are having a problem, we've said this already but, pray. Keep a good confession. Let your conversation be in line with your prayer.
Oh, come on, let's say that again. Let your conversation be in line with your prayer. Do you know how many of our own prayers we kill? We negate because we pray for one thing and then we get on the phone and say the opposite. Or we'll go out to lunch with somebody, and even if they ask you, "Well, I heard you had a problem. Tell me about it". It's not that you can't tell 'em about it, but you can also say, "But I've prayed about it and I really believe that God is working on it and that he's gonna solve it and he's gonna bring the answer at the right time". And you can also say, "I don't know how he's gonna do it, but God is gonna work something good out of this".
How many of you really believe that God does work good? Or what Satan meant for harm, God intends for good. And there is a scripture that tells us that we should remind God of his word. "I have set watchmen upon your walls, o Jerusalem, who will never hold their peace day or night: you who [are his servants and by your prayers] put the Lord in remembrance [of his promises], and keep not silent". Now, why would God want us to do that? Because there again it shows faith. You know, we're not being rude or saying, "Well, you said you'd do this and it's not happening". But you're saying, "God you said, and I believe it. You said that you would take care of this, you said that I didn't have to worry, and I believe that you will do that".
One of the reasons to know the word is so you can confess the Word of God out loud. And one of the ministries of the Holy Spirit that I like, says this in the Amplified Bible, that "He brings things to our remembrance when we need to know them". And I think one of the things that the Holy Spirit brings up in us when we're in specific situations is scriptures that go along with that situation. And the more you confess the word, the more the enemy is gonna wanna get out of your space because he just doesn't want to hear it. Another thing you can do is stay positive. Stay positive. Express your thankfulness for all that God does do and has done instead of just focusing on the problem.
You know, attitude is so important. And your attitude belongs to you. And it's something that nobody can take away from you. If you want to have a good attitude, there is no amount of trouble and no person and not even any devil that can take that good attitude away from you. I forget now exactly what his name was, but there was a man that was in the concentration camps in the holocaust and he made that statement, "You can take everything else away from me, but you can't take away my good attitude if I decide to have one". So, you can have a big problem with a good attitude, and it'll make that problem shrink. Or you can have a little problem with a bad attitude, and it just blows it out of proportion.
And so, I love the word hope. We should always be hopeful. Hope is the anchor of our soul. And what that means is hope keeps me anchored. I don't get all emotionally frustrated and upset and start doing all kinds of things in the flesh. Hope is a positive expectation that God is about to do something good in your life. So, why not, when you have a problem, instead of worrying about it, why not every morning the first thing you say when you get up is, "Something good is going to happen in my life today".
Now there are certain things that we tend to worry about more than others. Probably we could go through here and different ones of you have different things. For people who have children, a lot of times, it's your children. But it is amazing, and many of us would have this testimony, if you're old enough to already have raised your children, most of you would testify, like me, that all the worrying that you did was for nothing, because they all turned out okay. Amen? Sometimes kids just have to go through a rough patch and sometimes you have to, you know, we want them to do what we tell them to do. But did you do that? Did I do that? We would love them to do what we tell them because we've already have been through it and we know but they have to learn it for themselves.
And so, all of you watching with children that you're worried about, pray and trust God. You may have to wait five years, or ten years, but I believe that when we pray for our children that God hears our prayers. And don't ever stop praying. I prayed for my father's salvation for probably 40 years, not every day, but on and off, on and off. And I remember the last time that I prayed for his salvation, I got a little bold and I said, "Lord, you've given me the privilege of ministering all over the earth, and thousands of people get saved through our ministry, and I think it would be a shame if my own father went to hell while I'm leading other people to Christ. So, I'm asking you as a personal favor to me to save my father". And you know it wasn't very long after that and my mom called me and said, "Your dad's been crying for three weeks. He wants you to come over. He wants to talk to you".
And so, God was convicting him. And sometimes you have to get a little bold in your prayers. Don't pray wimpy prayers. You know. I don't like that. So many people say, "God, if you'll just do this and if you'll just do that". Well, I'll tell you, God is able to do more than "Just". He does exceedingly, abundantly, above and beyond. And I love Hebrews 4:15 and 16, that we have a high priest who understands our weaknesses and our infirmities because he's been tempted in all points just like we have. "Let us then therefore," because he understands, let us "Come boldly". Don't pray wimpy little, "Well, God, if you'll just do this for me, I won't ever ask you for anything else".
Well, that's a shame. I mean, I always say I'm a little spiritual pig. I'm gonna, anything that God says anybody can have, I want some of it. Amen? Don't you want everything that God can give you? There is nothing wrong with you praying for God to give you extravagant blessings in your life, if you're ready to do with them, what God wants you to do with them. God wants us to prosper. He wants us to be blessed. Not just so we can just be selfish and self-centered, but so we can help and bless a lot of people. There are so many people that are hurting, and one of the ways to draw them to God is through random acts of kindness. And the more you have, the more you're able to do that for people. Be patient while you wait. And that means to act like a Christian while you wait. Patience is not waiting: it's how you act while you're waiting.
And here again when you're worried it tends to make you kind of grouchy, so sometimes we act worse when we're waiting and those are times to act better. Don't be jealous, envious, or resentful of other people who are not having the problems that you have. I remember, one time, one of my sons got in trouble, and I had a party I had to go to, and I was surrounded by people that were talking about how great their kids were doing and I mean, I went in another room and just cried and cried. You know, it was just like, it was so hard for me. Here I'm having this awful feeling, "What if he doesn't make it? What if? What if? What if"? The devil's favorite question, you know, "What if"? And being around all these other people whose kids were doing great, sometimes that's even a test. God will set us up in a position like this to see if we can be happy for them while we're waiting for God to do the same thing for us. Amen?
Now, I really want you to trust God more than you ever have before. So, I wanna share a few scriptures with you about what the Bible says about being able to do that. First of all, in 1 Corinthians 10:13, the Bible says that there's "No temptation that can come against us that's not common to man". In other words, don't get in a little self-pity corner and think, "Poor me. I'm getting picked on while everybody else has got a great life". Let me tell you something, no matter how bad of a problem you have, somebody else is having a worse problem. And we all have our share. If not today, wait a few days. And I'm not saying that as a negative. It's just that we live in a world, we live in a real world, where there are things that just don't always go the way that we should go. And it says, "[that nothing has come up on you that is beyond human resistance]". I love that.
So, we need to get that through our heads. "I can make it through this". That's what you wanna tell yourself when it starts. "This is gonna end well. I can make it through this. God gives me treasures out of dark places. And I can do whatever I need to do through Christ who is my strength. God, this doesn't feel good, but help me act right. Help me act like a Christian". "And God [can be trusted] not to let you be tempted beyond your ability to resist it". So, when you start thinking, "I can't take this. I can't take it. I can't take it," you might as well just stop and say, "God, I can take whatever comes because you are not gonna bring more on me than what I can bear". How many things have you thought in the past? "I'm not gonna make it through this". You're still here. I mean, I can look at different ones of you that I know and remember times when you went through really, really, I mean, hard, difficult things and we walked through them with you.
And here you are with a smile on your face, just loving God. And don't you know that it just infuriates the devil when he throws his biggest problem at you and you come out stronger in your relationship with God than you were when you went in? "He will [always] also provide the way out (the means of escape to a landing place)". So, we have God's promise that no matter what happens, he will always provide a way out. Matthew 6:25-34, a lot of verses there, I'd like you to read them later. But it says, "I tell you, stop being perpetually uneasy (anxious and worried) about your life, what you're gonna eat or drink: or about your body, what you're gonna put on. Is life not greater [in quality] than food, and the body and [far above and more excellent] than clothing"?
Now, you know, these are real basic things. And so, we think, "I don't worry about what I'm gonna wear. I don't worry about what I'm gonna eat". Now, there are people, in the world, that do have to worry about those kind of things. But to me this is just basically saying, "Don't worry about anything. I'm gonna take care of all of your needs". And then he gives a couple of really good examples. "Look at the birds", and sometimes it's not a bad idea. Go out on your deck or in your yard and just see if you can find a bird sitting on a branch having a nervous breakdown. I mean we need to think about this. There are millions, probably billions of birds in the world and God feeds every one of them.
How does he do that? I don't know. But he does. He finds a way. He puts a worm somewhere or somebody throws bread off their porch, I mean, but that's pretty amazing when you think about it. Billions of birds and he gives that example. And he says, "Are you not worth more than they are"? How many of you think you're worth more than a bird? Come on, even if you've got a really bad attitude about yourself... You can give me that, "I'm more important than a bird". And then he talks about how beautiful flowers are and that, you know, lilies are more beautiful than the finest thing that Solomon had on. And he said, "These flowers are here today and gone tomorrow. And I take such good care of them, how much better care will I take of you? So, don't be worried and anxious saying", and I like to stop there when I use this scripture because what's in our heart comes out of our mouth.
And so, if we have wrong things in our heart, we are ultimately gonna have wrong things come out of our mouth. You know, when we worry and worry and worry and think and think and think, what's behind it is we want to know. We may believe God's gonna solve our problem, we wanna know when and how. And do you know that the thing that got eve in trouble was wanting to know? So, sooner or later, we have to trust God enough to get around to not having to know what God's gonna do but just being satisfied to know him and to know that he loves us.
1 John 4:18, "Perfect love casts out fear". If you know how much God loves you, then you start there and you know that because he loves you, he will take care of you. I wanna assure every single one of you, everyone watching from home, everybody here, God loves you more than you can even imagine. God loves us so much, we don't even know how to think about it. And the Bible says that "He loved us even when we were still yet in sin". Worry causes so many problems, but God is so faithful.
Deuteronomy 31:8, "It is the Lord who goes before you: he will [March] with you: he will not fail you or let you go or forsake you: [let there be no cowardice or flinching, but] fear not, neither become broken [in spirit: depressed, dismayed, and unnerved with alarm]". I have a three-year-old grandson, and his mother's such a good mother, and she's teaching him little, short scriptures and little, short sayings, and he does them and he sends 'em to me on my phone. And I got one the other day, it said, "Don't worry, be happy". Da da da da da. "That's all"! And I thought, "Man, that's a whole sermon". You know, I mean, what else is there? Don't worry, be happy. Da da da da da da da. That's all you really have to do to have a great life. Just don't worry and be happy.
Now, let me say again, I understand that some of you are going through some really, really tough things. And there may be some of us that aren't. Right now, I'm not going through anything in particular that's tough. But I have in my life and may again. We can't get this idea that because we're Christians and we love God that that means we get to escape every situation in the world. The Bible says, Jesus said, "In the world there will be tribulation, but cheer up".
So, we need to laugh the laugh of faith. We need to laugh as often as we can. And don't think when you have a problem that that automatically means you have to be miserable. Guess what? You can have a problem and it's okay to still go ahead and enjoy your life. And I really think sometimes we get this feeling, "Well, it just wouldn't be right to enjoy myself while I have this problem going on". Well, actually, it would probably get rid of the problem quicker if you did go ahead and like, and enjoy your life, because if the devil can't make you miserable then he might as well go try and bother somebody else. And so, there's so much to be said about worry, and I've only been able to say a little bit, but I hope what I have said has helped you and encouraged you.