Worry or Faith?

Lately my faith has been tested.  It has caused me to spend a great deal of time thinking about how we as Christians should handle worry, and what we should trust in.

You see my wife is in another country, without me.  She is with others, seeking to do the Lord’s work.  This is a place where not many Christians are or go.  I’m not going to mention too much about the trip, for their safety sake.

This is a trip that she and the others have been planning for months, so our family and close friends found out about it.  When others found out that she was going, for the most part they were ok with it, until they found out that I was not going with her.  Then they would ask me questions like “Aren’t you concerned about her safety?”  “Do you think she will be ok?”  “Who is going with her, and will they protect her?”  I could see their concern on their face, and could hear it in their voice. Many of them know that in years past, I studied Martial Arts and achieved a 2nd Degree Black Belt.  Maybe that is why some of them were asking such questions.  Maybe they believed that I could protect her if I went with her.  I would normally respond with “I’m trusting in God to protect her.”  The more people asked these questions, the more I started to ponder whether I made a wise decision not to go with her.

Worry started to build up in me as the date approached.  I started to be overfly concerned about the things she needed to take with her, and giving her my advice on what she should do at the hotel and when she was out and about.  We were forewarned about the more common things that could happen.  These things were mainly related to her safety, well being, and not having things stolen.

Both her, I, our family and friends have been praying about this trip.  I focused my prayers on her and the group’s safety and effectiveness; mainly safety.

The Lord has been working on me; taking me from worry to faith.  I’ve been watching the Netflix series called A.D. Kingdom and Empire, which is the story of the apostles and the start of the Church after Christ’s death and resurection.  The apostles were also taken through a journey from worry to faith.

Today, while she is in a foreign land, I can now honestly say that I’m not worried.  Instead I have faith and confidence that God can protect her far better than I could, even if I was right beside her.  I’ve been trying to show and convey that to my son, so he would see his father totally relying on God.

This has been a great process that the Lord has taken me through.  It is easy for us to say that we trust in the Lord, but do we really?  Often times it seems as though we are overly worried about things which we can do nothing about, and so we don’t live out the true faith God wants for us.

Driving to work the other day, I saw a huge flock of birds; like thousands of them.  They were in a parking lot, on cars, on telephone pole lines, and everywhere else.  It was a black sea of birds.  The next day, I saw them again at the exact same place.  They must have been resting there on their way, migrating to somewhere warmer.  It reminded me of the below verse where Jesus talked about worry.

“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing?  Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?  And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.  So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.” Matthew 6:25-34 NLT

Here are two other verses that came to mind.

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 NLT

This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9 NLT

Now think about you, your life, and your current situation.  What do you think about often, and what keeps you up at night?  Is this something you are worrying about, or are you trusting in the Lord?

Do your children see your worry, or do they see your faith in an ever present, all knowing, and all powerful God?  A God who loves, provides for and protects His children?  If not, then start to show them who your trust and hope is in. If they see this in you, their faith in God will grow.

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Ken Leaman

Ken Leaman has a passion for students, and for over 30 years has been volunteering within churches and other ministries, leading and mentoring students. These churches are:

Ken works for Amazon Web Services as a Support Operations Manager. Ken has also served on the boards of other non-profits like the DFW Technology Prayer Breakfast, and the DFW Help Desk Institute.

Ken, and his wife Karen, have been married for 31 years, and have a 30 year old son. They live in Allen, TX, just North of Dallas.

As Ken and Karen repeatedly witnessed many Christian students who were active within the Church walk away from their faith shortly after graduating high school, they grew frustrated.  Studies show that about 70% of young adults leave their faith after graduation, which is a huge issue since they are the future of the Church.  After much prayer and searching God's direction for many years, the Leaman's felt His calling to start a ministry to address this problem.  In 2014, they gathered like minded Christian professionals to help begin Young Adults of Worth Ministries.  We believe that this ministry is from God, and it will be blessed by Him for His glory alone.