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Focusing on the Truth - Part Three

By: Cheri Fuller

"Just as saving faith comes through hearing the gospel, so also the faith to trust God in adversity comes through the Word of God alone. Only in scripture do we find an adequate view of God’s relationship to and involvement in our painful circumstances. Only from the scriptures, applied to our hearts by the Holy Spirit, do we receive the grace to trust God when we are afraid."

Jerry Bridges

Worry to Wonder

We need a bridge to move from living a worried life to walking in trust and peace, and we don’t have to invent one. God already provided it in the Bible. Here are some ways to apply it to your life:

Empty the backpack of burdens. What are you most worried about? What concerns keep you awake at night? Be specific by saying, “I’m so worried about _________________________” or “I’m so burdened about ____________, and ___________________, and _________________________________.”

You may need the help of a counselor or trusted friend you can talk honestly with and gain insight into what is really troubling you. Once you admit instead of deny what you are most afraid of, the light can begin to shine there. Roots begin to be revealed and recovery can begin.

Stand on the promises. Once you’ve begun to face your worries and confess them to God and another person, study the Bible to discover God’s precious promises that address those issues. His Word is indestructible and irresistible, enabling us to trust in the dark, even in the most uncertain places and trials.

That’s why it’s so important to renew your mind day by day with God’s Word (Romans 12:2) and look for specific truths to replace the faulty thoughts you previously have ruminated on. A truth like “I am able to do all things through Him who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13 HCSB) replaces the thought, I just can’t handle this situation. It’s too hard! Replace the thought that there’s nothing good ahead for you, that you’ve failed and life is over with the great promise in Jeremiah 29:11–13: “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. They are plans for good and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. You will find me when you seek me, if you look for me in earnest” (TLB).

And when you feel like nobody cares about you, fill your heart with these verses: “How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand” (Psalm 139:17–18 NIV).

Make a Peace Packet. A great way to integrate these truths into daily life in a practical way is to create a Peace Packet. It will help you apply truth to your life and will remind you we have a loving God who’ll be faithful to fulfill His promises. Whether your worries relate to your job, your child, your safety, or the future, God’s Word applies to you and your situation. Here are some suggestions for making and using your own Peace Packet:

· On a three-by-five-inch card, bright colored if you prefer, write out a verse that has encouraged you or speaks to your situation or worry.

· Repeat the promise in your own words, telling God you are depending on Him. For example, “God, You said You would lift the fallen and those bent beneath their loads, that You are close to all who call on You sincerely (Psalm 145:14–21). Now I trust You to do this in my life.”

· Put the cards in a small ziplock bag to carry with you wherever you go.

· Focus on these truths instead of your worries; read them in the morning, before you go to sleep, and in in-between moments.

· Add to the verses in your Peace Packet as you discover more. Ask God each day to show you a new truth; it’s a prayer He loves to answer.

· Give the verses away by sharing them with others who need an encouraging word. Then they truly become your own. Pray God’s Word.

When we pray the promises, we become filled with faith instead of fear and doubt. That’s why you’ll find scripture prayers throughout this book. As we do, we can trust God to fulfill them in His way and time. “The more we incorporate the scriptures into our praying, the more likely we are to pray in the will of God, for God always stands behind what He has said. . . . When we let the Bible become our prayer, we are praying an inspired vocabulary. It will often release deep inner feelings far better than extemporized prayers that will come from our minds,” says Judson Cornwall. Psalm 138:2–3 confirms it: “I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name for your unfailing love and your faithfulness, for you have so exalted your solemn decree that it surpasses your fame. When I called, you answered me; you greatly emboldened me” (NIV).

© 2015 by Back to the Bible.

“From Replacing Worry for Wonder, published by Barbour Publishing, Inc. Used by permission.”

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