The Lord replied, My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.  Exodus 33:14

This is God’s promise throughout the Bible: His Presence. The result? Rest.  As we live on this earth, one of our greatest needs is a spirit of rest. Rest of mind and heart. Rest in body, in soul, and in spirit. Ahhh, rest.

Rest--instead of fear, insecurity, worry, anxiety. Rest. God knows how much we need this, and He makes us an irresistible offer: His Presence. The Holy Spirit in us is the fulfillment of that great promise. God is with us always. Always. Why, then, do we live in so much worry, anxiety, and fear? (This is not a rhetorical question.)

            In the book Crazy Love, Francis Chan gives his “reasons” for worrying:

“I’m a problem solver, so I have to focus on things that need fixing. God can see that my intensity and anxiety are ministry-related. I worry because I take His work seriously. Right?...But I see the verse ‘Do not be anxious about anything’

Philippians 4:6 as a command. That is staggering. Even more staggering is that when I am consumed by my problems, I actually convey the belief that I think my circumstances are more important than God’s command to not be anxious. In other words, I have a “right” to disobey God, because of the magnitude of my responsibilities! Basically, it’s okay to sin and not trust God because the stuff in my life is somehow exceptional. That totally reeks of arrogance!!”

He goes on to say that we don’t quite trust that God is big enough, powerful enough or loving enough to take care of what’s happening in our lives. Yikes!

            In Chan-like style he closes in for the punch: “Worry and stress declare our tendency to forget that we’ve been forgiven, that our lives here are brief, that we are headed to a place where we won’t be lonely, afraid, or hurt ever again, and that in the context of God’s strength, our problems are small, indeed. WHY ARE WE SO QUICK TO FORGET GOD? WHO DO WE THINK WE ARE??!!”

            Why do I so quickly forget God? What can I do? I can ask the Holy Spirit to remind me. (That’s one of His jobs.) Paradoxically, I need the Holy Spirit—so that I can remember that I have the Holy Spirit! Also, I want to be less problem-focused and instead, be promise -focused. I want to center on this incredible, astonishing promise: My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest. Life can be hard, but God is with me. I sink down into Him. I rest.

**Why are worry and stress are arrogant?

**Why not decide that today you will focus more on God’s presence?

God, You are big enough, powerful enough and loving enough to take care of what’s happening in my life. I bow down to Your greatness. I rest. I rest. I rest.

The Way Counseling
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