“I am no longer anxious about anything, as I realize that He is able to carry out His will for me. It does not matter where He places me, or how. That is for Him to consider, not me, for in the easiest positions He will give me grace, and in the most difficult ones His grace is sufficient.”
Hudson Taylor was the great missionary that came from England to China. Many of his quotes have been persevered over the years that allow us to learn some valuable lesson into missional living.
One of the biggest lessons that we need to learn is how to join God on His mission without being overwhelmed with worry and anxiety. Experiencing God’s peace in the midst of trials, tribulations and the lack of resources is an essential disposition for all Christians to have especially if they are going to brightly shine the Light of Christ.
From Hudson Taylor’s quote, we learn how to develop that worry free disposition so that we are able to join him in saying,
“I am no longer anxious about anything.”
Can you say that for yourself? Are you free from worry or do you still get a little anxious or maybe even extremely stressed out about uncertain circumstances?
Over the next few posts, we are going to learn those lessons that Hudson Taylor learned in living a worry free life and how we can apply them to our life. There’s a total 7 of them.
Lesson #1: Embrace The Reality Of A Worry Free Life
Again, what did Hudson Taylor say? Read it one more time and let it really sink in!
"I am no longer anxious about anything ..."
WOW! What a claim! He is saying that he has come to a point in his growth in Christ that he is no longer gets anxious, no longer worries about or gets stressed out over the things of this life.
He is saying that he was experiencing the worry free life.
Hudson Taylor believed that the worry free life was not only a possibility but also something that every Christian should seek after and attain.
What are we to conclude about such a statement? We can come to the conclusion that Hudson Taylor was either:
- Liar that is making statements that are not true. Or,
- Deluded and was not in his right mind. Or,
- Truthful and he truly was experiencing a worry free life.
But before we get to far along in judging Hudson Taylor let's take a look at what the Apostle Paul had to say about the topic of worry and about experiencing personal contentment. (My Definition Of Contentment Is: The state of mind that is freed from a life of worry).
"Be anxious for nothing, 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." Philippians 4:6-7
Do you see it there? Paul is basically saying the same thing that Hudson Taylor said. Paul is telling us that there is no need to be anxious about anything! What does “anything” include? It includes everything. In other words, there is absolutely nothing that you will go through in life that you need to worry about if your life is in Christ. Those that belong to Jesus have no need to worry about anything! That’s exactly what this verse is teaching.
So, if the Bible is telling us to stop worrying then it must be possible to do!
There's no question in Paul's mind that living a worry free life is not only possible but also should be expected!
Paul doesn't stop there. He goes on to tell people what to do when the circumstances of life are uncertain. Paul clearly instructs us to to stop the worrying, which is our normal response to uncertainty, and start praying about it.
In other words, do an exchange! Instead of worrying over the uncertainties of life exchange that activity with the activity of talking to God about it. Place your faith in the god who's not uncertain about what the future hold but actually controls it.
PRAYER IS A LEARNED BEHAVIOR THAT MUST BE NURTURED IF WE WILL BE ABLE TO LIVE A WORRY FREE LIFE!
Paul says in Philippians 4:12 that he has discovered the "SECRET OF BEING CONTENT"! Isn't it interesting that the Apostle Paul refers to contentment as being a secret? Why would he do that? Maybe it's because this contentment that so many of us are striving for is also what has alluded us so often and hard to hold onto!
This contentment that Paul is talking about is to be found in any and every situation! Not just some situations but in all situations and circumstances. Meditate on that thought for a just a little bit!
- Do you really think that is possible?
- Do you believe what the Bibles teach on the reality of this spiritual condition?
- And wouldn't having that contentment in every situation be a marvelous state of mind on a moment-by-moment and situation-by-situation basis?
And then Paul shares what that secret is in Philippians 4:13,
"I can do all things through Him who strengthens me."
The secret of contentment is trusting in Christ who helps us do all things and specifically being content in the midst of the most uncertain of situations. It is clear that the Apostle totally agrees with Hudson Taylor that a worry free life is the expected life style of God's people.
BOTH HUDSON TAYLOR AND THE APOSTLE PAUL AGREE - THE WORRY FREE LIFE IS EXPECTED AND DESIRED LIFESTYLE FOR GOD'S PEOPLE!
But, just in case you think that both the Apostle Paul and Hudson Taylor were crazy let's also take a look at what Jesus himself had to say about a worry free life.
In Matthew 6:25-43 Jesus talks about worry at length as part of the Sermon On The Mount. Let's look at a couple of statements that Jesus made about worry and how to view it:
- "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear." (v. 25)
- "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear." (v. 28)
- "So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'what shall we wear?" (v. 31)
- "Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself." (v. 34)
Did you notice that in the spam of 9 verses Jesus instructed us four different times NOT TO WORRY! Basically Jesus was saying,
What does that tell us about Jesus position on being anxious or worried? Simple this: It’s not part of the lifestyle that He has planned for His disciples to have, it's an unnecessary activity and if we are chronically suffering from a lifestyle of worry we are not experiencing the life he has intended for us to live.
But before you experience that stress free – worry free life you have to embrace that kind of lifestyle as attainable. In order to get there you have to believe that others have made it and that you can too, with Christ help and strength, can make it.
NO ONE CAN EXPERIENCE A WORRY FREE LIFE IF THEY DON’T BELIEVE IT’S POSSIBLE!
The starting point is to just to believe that with Christ and through Christ an anxious free life is possible.
So, are you ready to take the plunge? Are you ready to draw the line in the sand and declare that it is God’s will that you no longer worry about anything but pray about everything and allow the peace of God that transcends all understanding to guard your heart from disappointments and your mind from confusion, as you stand firm in the contentment that Christ provides you regardless of the circumstances God allows you to go through, rich or poor, healthy or unhealthy, slave or free?
Are you ready?
If so, you are one step closer to making the worry free life your reality!