Monday morning didn’t start out the way I had wanted it to. There was a lot on my mind; many things that were causing me to be fearful, angry and hurt. I was trying to trust God with each of the challenges that we are dealing with, but the human in me wants to be angry and hang on to them. I walk a thin line of guilt and anger. Keith hears me say ‘I can’t shake this off’ when I have that ‘thing’ that I won’t give up. When I got to work that morning I opened my email and found our weekly devotion from our Hobby Lobby Store Chaplain, Debbie Kinsey. I read it each week, sometimes it speaks to me directly and other times it is a word that I hide in my heart. Well, Monday, August 29th’s devotion spoke to me. So, I asked her permission to share it on my blog.
He shook it off!
Sometimes when I am studying the bible, I will use a dictionary to look up words. I look up words that I already have a good idea on what the meaning is but just feel there is something more to the verse I am reading. This helps me. A few years ago I looked up the word “fret” as I was studying Psalms 37. (In fact, I did a devotional about fretting.)
“Fret not thyself because of evildoers….”
I knew what fret meant but was not sure how to put it into words. So according to Webster’s Dictionary fret means to gnaw or to wear away, to produce a hole or worn spot, to form a passage by erosion, to agitate.
Fret means to GNAW! Well doesn’t that sound like fun? An example of gnaw is like a rat gnawing or chewing on something. Without taking away from scripture, Psalms 37:1 is telling us not to allow the actions of others to gnaw at us.
You and I would never just sit by and allow a rat to chew on us. Yet, how many times do we allow what someone has said or done to eat at us? I did that word study back in 2007. And guess what? I have to remind myself often about this truth from God’s Word.
In the book of Acts there is a story about the apostle Paul gathering a bundle of sticks. As he did this a poisonous snake came out of the heat and the scripture tells us “fastened on his hands.” What did Paul do? HE SHOOK IT OFF! (Acts 28: 3-6)
In the name of Jesus, I pray each of us will shake off anything that is gnawing at us. I pray by the Word of God that a spirit of boldness will rise up in us and we will be determined with the help of God to get rid of anything that is ungodly.
We are told to fret not because fretting will destroy us! Psalms 37: 3-7 instructs us on how to avoid fretting. The Psalmist tells us to, Trust in the Lord (v3), delight thyself in the Lord (v4), commit thy ways unto the Lord (v5), rest in the Lord (v7).
The Psalmist continues by stating that God will take care of those who are considered our enemies. But he ends with:
“And the Lord shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in Him.” (Psa. 37:40)
TRUST, DELIGHT, COMMIT, and REST in the LORD!
Management Ministries Coordinator
The great ending to this blog would be to say that I immediately quit ‘fretting’, but I didn’t. As a matter of fact this morning when I was getting ready to put this blog together, ‘it’ was gnawing at me pretty good. Then…..I received an email from a wonderful friend, the subject line said “claim this today’ and then there was this:
Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. (MSG)
At that point I knew God was trying to tell me that He had that ‘thing’ and would take care of it. So I choose to claim it! Today I will not fret or worry about the things I can’t control. I will trust God to take care of them. I hate that I sometimes get sidetracked in my problems and allow them to weigh me down. I am happy to know I have a loving Father who understands, extends His arms and loves me through them. It’s amazing how much better I can breathe now, knowing I can trust Him with it all.
If you are interested in reading more of the devotions by Debbie Kinsey they are here; http://www.debbiekinsey.org/