The Bible tells us that the joy of the Lord is our strength. I love it when my mind is at rest and I have a song of praise to the Lord in my heart! God is worthy of our worship and He loves for us to praise Him. When I’m fretting, my thoughts keep accusing me of what I’m not by exaggerating my faults and reminding me over and over of areas in my life where I’m lacking. When this is going on I don’t sing and make melody in my heart to the Lord as much!
Before I started studying this subject, I imagined a fretting person as someone who is in a panic or is noticeably worried to the point where they can hardly function! Now I realize fretting can go on in the background of my day, in my mind, and nobody else would even know it’s happening!
The definition of ‘fret’ is “to agitate, to disturb, to wear away”. It can be a quiet disturbance, like “a rippling on the surface of water, or small undulations continually repeated.”
Fretting doesn’t cause me to run screaming down the street, but it does affect my motivation and my momentum. It slows down or even stops forward movement in things I’d like to accomplish.
What should I do when I’m fretting?
To use a military term- authenticate!
My pastor recently preached a sermon on this very subject, and he explained how, in war situations, enemy forces will try to send false messages by making themselves sound like they are on the same side. In order to make sure that the orders are legitimate, they would have codes whereby they can authenticate that the messages being sent are true, and are not enemy imposters sending false messages.
We have to be able to identify where our thoughts are coming from!
We have a Heavenly Father who speaks to us, but we also have opposing forces that would like to diminish our hope.
When the Holy Spirit is speaking to me, the words will match the fruit of the Spirit! I can check to see if these thoughts include love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance.
Also, when God is trying to teach me something through His wisdom, it will be pure, peaceable, gentle, easy to be entreated. It will be full of mercy and good fruits.
So, when I find that my heart and mind are not totally at rest and that there’s a relentless accusation in my mind about my shortcomings, I know this is not the Lord! With this knowledge, I can choose to disregard this barrage. I’ve even said out loud, “I don’t have to listen to this. I don’t have to think this way, or feel this way! I’m a child of the King.”
I can actually agree with the thoughts that are trying to take my hope away and turn them upside down by saying, “Yes, I do lack in some areas, but God’s grace is sufficient! And, He’s still working on me!”
Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ (Philippians 1:6)
With this in mind, I can pray to God, and ask for His grace to help me with the thing that is nagging at me, and then rest in His care! This is an example of how we can resist the devil, and the Bible says he will flee from us, according to James 4:7.
How about you? Is your mind at rest? Do you have wind in your sails, and that beautiful thing called hope that gives you the motivation to keep pressing forward? Or are you fretting a little bit, and finding there are some ripples that keep causing you to feel less than at peace?
Shine the light of the Word of God on those thoughts that are trying to creep in and cast them down!
And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:9)