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The Weight of Worry

  • November 2016 Issue
Today with Paul Nyquist

About ten years ago, I tore the biceps tendon in my left arm. I decided to go ahead and have surgery to reattach the tendon because I was scheduled to fly to Europe for a conference.

When I returned for a post-op meeting with my doctor, I had a significant concern: I could no longer straighten the fingers on my hand. The doctor said, “Hmmm. That may be permanent.” Needless to say, I was in shock.I went home and explained (through some tears) to my wife that I might have permanently lost the use of my hand.

Worry took over. I thought about the changes this would bring to my life. I would not be able to do simple things like tie my shoes or button my shirt. I would not be able to type well on a computer or play catch with my sons in the backyard.

The doctor said that all we could do was wait and see if the damaged nerve would heal itself. So I started physical therapy. About three months later, I began to see some improvement. By God’s grace, about six months later, I regained full function in my hand.

That was a significant time of worry for me. All I could do was place the situation in God’s hands, for I (and my doctor) could do nothing about it. Worry is a terrible burden. It is incredibly heavy. As Proverbs 12:25 says, “Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down.”

From Scripture, we learn that the only solution is to place our worries in God’s hands. In Philippians 4:6–7, Paul gives some advice, “Be anxious for nothing.” But he doesn’t stop there—we all realize that simply trying not to worry is ineffective. Paul continues, “But in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

We don’t just try our best not to worry. Instead, we can express our concerns, laying this burden of worry at the feet of Jesus. Author Max Lucado once said, “No one can pray and worry at the same time.” How true that is. So we pray, giving our worries to God, trusting that He sees and cares, and that He will give us His peace. Are you tired of worrying? Cast “all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7).

BY Dr. Paul Nyquist, President of Moody Bible Institute

Dr. Paul Nyquist is the ninth president of Moody Bible Institute and featured speaker on Moody Radio’s program “Moody Presents.” With his theological training, pastoral heart and global focus, Nyquist is leading Moody to go across the globe, cultures and generations to equip people with the truth of God’s Word, using new technology, in an agile and innovative community. He and his wife, Cheryl, have been married for 30 years, have four grown children, and are proud grandparents of three grandchildren.

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