Anxious for Nothing

The Lord is My Shepherd

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So many people today suffer from anxiety, worry, and/or fear. Recent studies show that 77% of adults in the US experience physical symptoms of stress and 96% see anxiety and depression as problems amongst their peers. Yet, God does not want us to live this way. Some anxiety, worry, and fear is healthy, but excessive stress in these areas will lead to hurt and pain for ourselves and others. But, God. God can and will bring healing into our lives. God wants us to be anxious for nothing because The Lord is my shepherd. God is with you and for you today. Let’s live in faith and confidence in Christ Jesus.



So many people today suffer from anxiety, worry, and/or fear. Recent studies show that 77% of adults in the US experience physical symptoms of stress and 96% see anxiety and depression as problems amongst their peers. Yet, God does not want us to live this way. Some anxiety, worry, and fear is healthy, but excessive stress in these areas will lead to hurt and pain for ourselves and others. But, God. God can and will bring healing into our lives. God wants us to be anxious for nothing because The Lord is my shepherd. God is with you and for you today. Let’s live in faith and confidence in Christ Jesus.


00:00 | Jeff Simmons

Well, good morning, church. Good morning. What a great morning of worship. A great morning to be in the Lord's presence together. I'm so excited about today because we're beginning this brand-new series called Anxious for Nothing. I'll tell you; we've been praying and planning, preparing for a lot of months. I just believe God has a word for all of us in this series, but especially for me, because I mean this is something that all of us I think are going through in our own lives.

00:24 | Jeff Simmons

A couple of weeks ago, I couldn't sleep. You ever have one of those nights, right? Your mind is just racing. I'm lying there in bed and there's a lot of things that are happening. My mind was just still going, it's just still going. I'm trying to go to sleep, and I can't go to sleep. I mean obviously a lot of things are happening at church. We've got construction happening at Franklin and then with our Nolensville Campus, our Nashville Campus.

00:48 | Jeff Simmons

We decided to do it all at the same time. It's just like right here. So, my mind is like, "Oh, how are we going to get all this done?" There was a thing that happened at Nolensville campus. It was great, and I was so excited. Then just that day, somebody said, "Well, there may be this little hiccup." All I could hear was this little hiccup. All I could think about that night was, well, what if it doesn't happen? Right? What if this doesn't go? I'm running all these scenarios in my mind; I'm thinking we should've done this. We've had months of meetings and everything. But what if we'd gone in this direction? There I am lying in bed, right? I'm thinking, why am I not able to go to sleep?

01:23 | Jeff Simmons

I'm looking at the clock. It's like 1:00. Then I think, okay, I'm going to go to sleep, and I look back, it's 1:11. It's like, ah. Then it's 2:00. Then it's 3:00. And then finally 4:00. You're like, I might as well get up, right? I'm not getting any sleep here, so I'll answer emails. Here I am, and then about 10:00, I get this email. It says everything's great, everything's fine, it's whatever. It's all a gone done deal. And I'm like, why did I not sleep? I mean all of this stuff that was happening, and here I was. I wasted an entire night, stressed out or worried about this. I was anxious for nothing, right? For nothing.

02:01 | Jeff Simmons

Hey, but this isn't a new thing. 500 years ago, this guy Michel de Montaigne. You like my French there? Hey. He said this quote, right? He put this quote up, he says, "My life has been filled with terrible misfortune; most of which never happened." Anybody relate to that? All right, my life has been filled with this terrible misfortune most of which never happened.

My life has been filled with terrible misfortune; most of which has never happened.

02:25 | Jeff Simmons

We always play worst-case scenario. We always go to, "Oh, this is going to be it, right?" Oh, this, this, this. I read a study the other day that said 85% of the things that we worry about never come to fruition. 85%, but we worry, and we're anxious, and we're stressed. We're afraid. It permeates our lives and it permeates our culture, it permeates the world that we live in today.

02:56 | Jeff Simmons

Hey, notice some of these stats. Notice some of these stats. Look at this. 40%, 40% of Americans are more anxious today than at this same point a year ago. Maybe that's you, I don't know. But 40% of Americans are more anxious today that at this point a year ago. What? Look at this one. 77% of our population experiences physical symptoms of stress on a regular basis. 77%. then this is the one that really got me. 96% of teens see anxiety and depression as a problem amongst their peers.

03:33 | Jeff Simmons

It's not just an issue for us, right? It's an issue for our children and students, in the world that they're growing up in. This anxiety, this worry, this pressure that they feel to perform. You're thinking, you're thinking this, you're thinking why right? Because in our minds, we go the way of the world. In our minds, we think, well, if I just had more money, then this going to solve all the problems. Right?

03:56 | Jeff Simmons

If I get a raise at work or if I get this job or I get this bonus, that if I win the lottery, I'm not going to have any more problems, or we keep thinking, man, technology is going to fix it. Technology. But do you guys know this? We live in the wealthiest nation that has ever existed in history. I'm sorry. The wealthiest nation ever existed to history. We live in the most technologically advanced civilization that there has ever been and yet stress and worry and anxiety are off the chart.

04:26 | Jeff Simmons

Why? Because it's not those things are going to solve our problems. It's going to come back to the heart. God knows, God created this. God wants us to learn to have a relationship with him. God wants us to grow deeper in our walk with him. God wants to be more passionate about him. So that's what we're going to talk about.

04:44 | Jeff Simmons

I believe this series is going to be so important for all of us these next six weeks. So don't miss because we're going to be camping out on one of the most beautiful portions of scripture that there is, Psalm 23. So, if you have a Bible with you this morning, I invite you to open up with me to this great chapter in the Bible. Now, if you don't have a Bible, that's okay. There are some Bibles in the back, love for you to grab one and let's unpack God's word today because God's got a word for us. We'll also put the scripture on the screen or maybe you have a mobile device you can access the scripture at You Version.

05:16 | Jeff Simmons

Psalm 23, I mean it is so good. I'm going to challenge you guys. I'm going to challenge all of us. I'm going to challenge you to memorize this Psalm. Okay? It's only six verses, so don't stress out. Okay. Because that would mess up the whole series. Right? It's only six verses, right? So like right there, those six verses. So, if you can, during this series, you got six weeks. Okay. We'll give you a long ramp time here if you can memorize this because I think it's going to have a huge impact on us. Charles Spurgeon, that great pastor, he said this chapter in the Bible has charmed more griefs than all the philosophy of the world combined.

05:54 | Jeff Simmons

If you think about Psalm 23, I mean it has been read at more funerals, have been read om more hospital rooms. It's been read on the battlefield. I mean this many times is the last words that a lot of people hear before they go home to be with the Lord. It is beautiful. It is deep. It is rich. It's God's word for us in this series and in our lives. If you notice here at the beginning, it says just a Psalm of David, a Psalm of David.

06:17 | Jeff Simmons

Now this summer, we studied the life of this guy, David. David was known as a man after God's heart. Man, he loved the Lord. David was a man who pursued God. He wasn't perfect. Oh no, he wasn't perfect. In fact, there was a lot of struggles that he went through in his own life. But man, he loved God. Many scholars believe that David is writing Psalm 23 in his old age. All right? So now he's been King over Israel for 40 years, had a lot of success, won a ton of battles, had a lot of struggles, a lot of failures as well. But now he's looking back on his life and he's writing these words down. So if you can kind of think about this sage, this wisdom, this passion, but it's walking with God for all their life and they're writing down to you and to me, so don't miss this.

07:05 | Jeff Simmons

David writes and he pours it out. He says we're just going to be at verse one today. Just verse one, okay? He says, "The Lord is my shepherd. I lack nothing." The Lord is my shepherd. I lack nothing. Look at this, the Lord.

07:28 | Jeff Simmons

Now, if you notice, LORD here is all capital, right? It's capitalized here. This is the personal name for God. This is Yahweh, Yahweh, that Yahweh is that personal name that the Jews, they wouldn't even put the vowels in the name when they wrote it because they didn't want to mess it up. I mean like they didn't want to take the Lord's name in vain, so they would just do YHWH, right? Yahweh, the LORD, Sovereign, God, Creator of all that there is, the LORD.

07:57 | Jeff Simmons

David, I love that he just starts, right? The Lord, right? Jehovah, Jehovah, Jireh, the Lord is my provider. All these names for God all encompassed in this. The Lord is, is. Not the Lord was, not the Lord will be, not the Lord has been, but the Lord is. Present right here, right now.

The Lord is, is. Not the Lord was, not the Lord will be, not the Lord has been, but the Lord is. Present right here, right now.

08:20 | Jeff Simmons

Whatever you're going through in life. Listen, the Lord is. He is here. He is in this place. He is in this moment. He is in your life. The Lord is my personal. I loved that he didn't say the Lord is our, he is. The Lord is Israel's. The Lord is the world's. The Lord is my, my shepherd, shepherd.

08:46 | Jeff Simmons

Now, if you remember before David became the king, David was a shepherd. So he's coming back to this and thinking, "Man, I know what it's like to be a shepherd." Now when we think of a shepherd in our Western mindset, we think of like big herd, like this big flock of sheep. You got the shepherd who's driving the sheep behind, he's like pushing them. You got sheepdogs on the side that are keeping them in line. They're going off to kill the sheep and make money. Right? That's kind of what it our mindset. But back in the Middle Eastern mindset, the shepherd, right, he loved the sheep.

09:25 | Jeff Simmons

He took care of the sheep. The shepherd knew each sheep by name. There was this relationship with the sheep. I mean the sheep was part of the family, but back then they didn't have dogs, right? Man's best friend. They had a sheep. The sheep, many times were a family. That was something that would kind of stay in your house or sleep in your bed many times or with your kids. I mean, you knew your sheep. The village would come together and have one shepherd who would take care of all these sheep, but they would lead the sheep. I mean not force them; they would lead them. David's thinking back, "Hey, the shepherd, he knows their names, he knows their names."

10:04 | Jeff Simmons

Now, what's the job of a shepherd? Take care of the sheep, right? I mean that is the job of a shepherd. He takes care of the sheep. In fact, when David would go to Saul to say, "Hey, let me fight Goliath." You remember what he said? Saul's like, "You can't fight Goliath. He's a warrior." David's like, "Hey, I've been taking care of these sheep and I killed a bear. I killed a lion. They were coming for the sheep. I stepped in." David is like the shepherd, puts his life on the line for the sheep.

10:34 | Jeff Simmons

The Lord is my shepherd. David's going, God's job is to take care of you. He takes care of the sheep. That's what he does. "The Lord is my shepherd. I lack nothing." I mean think about it. Right?

10:54 | Jeff Simmons

So many times in our lives we think, "Well, if I just had this, oh man, all my problems would be solved." If I had this, if I could buy that, if I had this, then I could go away. All these things that we play. But really in your life, do you lack?

11:09 | Jeff Simmons

Really, I mean you think about your basic needs. You think about food and clothing and shelter. Anybody here, I mean, you haven't missed a meal, right? For a while or you probably went in your closet and it wasn't like, oh, I've got one shirt to wear. It's like, which shirt do I wear again? We have so much. Many times, we have to distinguish between needs and wants. My kids will come to me and go, "Dad, I need Air Pods." I'm like, "Do you really? I mean, you need air, really? I mean you have, and David is like looking back on his life going, "Man, I lack nothing.

11:43 | Jeff Simmons

God has met all of my needs. So then, right, if the Lord is my shepherd, if I lack nothing, why do we have so much stress, and worry, and anxiety? Why does it permeate all of our lives so many times? Now there is a difference between fear and anxiety, right? Fear is in the immediate. Fear is in this situation. I'm like, ah, I'm afraid, right? So, I'm going to fight or flight. I'm not in the immediate, worry and anxiety is preemptive? It's the thinking about, well, this could happen, this can happen, this might be. There are things that are symptoms of anxiety. I mean, there's the shortness of breath. There's the can't sleep at night. There's the over-analyzing things. I can't turn my mind off. But anxiety literally is kind of this check engine light. It's like saying, "Hey, there's something going on. There's something wrong. You need to evaluate. You need to stop. You need to look at where you are in life and what's going on."

12:44 | Jeff Simmons

Amy Alexander goes to our church, she's amazing. She's also the executive director of the Refuge Center right here in Williamson County. They have about 50 therapists that do counseling with so many people in our community. She just does an amazing, amazing job. I asked Amy, I said, "Amy, would you come and talk to our communicators?" So, we have a communicators meeting every Monday where we meet with our communicators from different campuses. I kind of talk about, "Hey, here's where we're going in this series." So, I said, would you come as we prepare for this series and talk to us? I mean, you saw at the Refuge Center, 30,000 cases last year of people and counseling sessions. Just tell us a little bit about what you're seeing and what's happening, what's going on.

13:24 | Jeff Simmons

She came and was incredible. I got to tell you guys, over the next six weeks, you're going to hear some just great things about what's happening out there and what God's doing, and how we can apply that in our lives today. But she did this awesome thing. She said, "I'm going to paint a picture for you."

13:40 | Jeff Simmons

She goes, just think about this. Think about your happy place. So, I want you to go there with me this morning. Think about, we're going to go to the beach. Okay? I know some of you are mountain people, but you know, let's go to the beach. All right? So, in your mind, go to the beach, go to this place that's just like for your place, your happy place day. You're just on the beach. It's a beautiful day. Palm trees are swaying, there's a hammock set up. You're kind of walking on the shore. You're just right there. The waves are coming in. There's some classical music playing. You're kind of relaxing now, you're kind of going ... You feel your blood pressure going down? Yeah.

14:22 | Jeff Simmons

Then Amy goes, but what if you changed the music? What if the music is duun, dun, duun, dun, duun, dun, [Jaws' theme song] right? And all of a sudden, your blood pressure goes up, right? You're like, ah! You're looking for the fin. You're like, "Get out of the water, everybody run." All of a sudden you just change that music and your blood pressure shoots through the roof. Well, here I pray in this series, we change the music. I pray in this series, we just changed the music for our lives, and it becomes Psalm 23, "The Lord is my shepherd. I lack nothing." We start to feel God's presence just bathing over us in a powerful way.

15:07 | Jeff Simmons

Throughout the scriptures, man, there were people who struggled with this in this area. We're going to look at some of them throughout this series. A lot of times we look at people in the Bible, we think, "Oh, they had it all together, right?" They didn't have any struggles. Oh no, no, no, they were real-life people just like you and me.

15:22 | Jeff Simmons

There was this guy in the Old Testament named Elijah. Elijah, I mean this guy was just an awesome prophet. I mean, he is like what you would think of a profit. I mean, he's just cool and awesome. He's just like just this guy's got it all together? Right? Here's Elijah, Elijah, one of his big victories came at Mount Carmel. Ahab and Jezabel, the king and the queen over Israel, were leading Israel off the worship Bale, this pagan God.

15:48 | Jeff Simmons

Elijah is like, "Uh-uh [negative]. Come on now. We're not going to have that here in our country." So, Elijah says, "Hey, I'm going to challenge the prophets of Bale to a contest." He says, "Everybody meet me up on Mount Carmel and we're going to have a contest to see who is really God." So, all of Israel shows up, I mean, picture this giant stadium, right? And here's over on this side, the prophets of Bale, 450 prophets there. On this side, there's Elijah. I mean this is like Rocky Balboa versus Ivan Drago, right? I mean, this is like, right? This is a big deal. Here's all of Israel there. Here's these 450 prophets of Bale. Elijah goes, "You guys go first. You build your altar and you call down and just see if your god will come down and receive your offering."

16:37 | Jeff Simmons

So these guys all get together and they start building this altar. All these people are watching. Then they start to call out to their God. Of course, nothing happens. Why? Because their God doesn't exist, right? So, Elijah's over here. He's watching all this. Then finally kind of starts talking trash. He's like, "Hey dudes, maybe you're not yelling loud enough." They're like, "Oh yeah, yeah." They're going crazy and dancing around. Then they start cutting themselves. Elijah's like, "Maybe he's busy. Maybe he's got a lot going on. You know what? Maybe he's gone on vacation. Maybe he's in the bathroom. Have you thought about that? Maybe you just yell out." They're going. Nothing happens. Finally, Elijah is like, "Come on guys, get real. This is the one true God."

17:22 | Jeff Simmons

And he builds this altar. He takes 12 stones, represents the 12 tribes of Israel, puts the sacrifice on the altar. Then he says, "Hey, y'all go get some water and let's douse this altar. Let's just watch this." They douse it. He goes, "Douse it again." Douse it again, douse it again. It fills up that trench around the altar. Then Elijah, prays, "God, you are God. God comes down to receive this right now for your name and your glory." And whoosh, fire comes down to consumes the sacrifice. All the people are like, what? Wow, He is God. Elijah is like, "Yes, He is." He goes over any kills these 450 prophets of Bale. I mean people just rush in and just like, "Hey, we're done with this." They take over. You're thinking, man, great spiritual victory, unbelievable.

18:09 | Jeff Simmons

Elijah's on cloud nine. What happens so often, right, when we have these great spiritual victories is when Satan comes in. Maybe you leave church and it's like, "Oh, I just feel so close to the Lord." Then these challenges start to come up. Elijah gets word that Jezabel, the queen is mad. She's mad because she worshipped Bale. So she sends word to Elijah right after this happens and says, "Elijah, you're a dead man, I'm coming after you." You're thinking Elijah is like, "Bring it. I just took out 450 prophets of Bale. God just showed up. Come on." But it doesn't say that. It says Elijah got scared, he tucked in his robe. He started to run. He ran for 40 days and 40 nights. He was that afraid. He ran all the way down to Mount Horeb, this mountain. He goes into the cave.

19:06 | Jeff Simmons

Then he hears from God, "What are you doing here Elijah? What are you doing here?" Elijah goes in, "God, you wouldn't believe it. Like the whole nation's gone away from you. Nobody believes. I'm trying God, but I'm the only one left. God, I'm the only one left." And God says, "Elijah, step out on the side of the mountain because I'm about to pass by."

19:33 | Jeff Simmons

What comes next is this big great wind, but God's not in the wind. What comes next is this earthquake, but God's not in the earthquake. What comes next then is this fire, but God's not in the fire. Then there's the still small voice and God's in the still small voice, "What are you doing here, Elijah?"

20:01 | Jeff Simmons

God, I'm all alone. And God's like, "No, you're not. Go back the way you came. I've reserved 7,000 who haven't bowed their need to Bale. Those 7,000 are seeking me back in Israel. Elijah, I'm not done with you. You go back." Why did God show up in a still small voice? You know why?

20:29 | Jeff Simmons

If you're a parent here, you know why. You're a grandparent, you're an aunt or an uncle, you know when your kids are scared? Maybe there's a thunderstorm that's happening outside and your kids are scared. They get up in the middle of the night and they'd come running in. You don't go, "Hey, you go back." What do you do? You pull them in close, don't you? It's got to be okay. Come here. I love you. It's going to be all right. Daddy's here. Mommy's here. You okay? You're okay."

20:58 | Jeff Simmons

It's in that still small voice that we draw close. It's in that still small voice that we realize He's with us. He's there for us. Elijah met God on the mountain. Elijah goes back and he goes back in the name of the Lord. He does incredible things for God. He just needed that time. He had to be in the Lord's presence.

21:21 | Jeff Simmons

If you're taking notes today, here's some things I want you to write down. I don't want you to miss these today. If you're taking notes with us. Hey, first of all, realize He's God and you're not. Realize He is God and you're not. David starts off with "The Lord." It just says, "The Lord." Right? Many times, we start off with our problems. We start off with our worries. We start off with our fears. We kind of set our minds on all these things and David goes, "No, no, no, no. You start with the Lord." You realize He is God and you're not. God is the creator and sustainer of all.

You start with the Lord." You realize He is God and you're not.

21:56 | Jeff Simmons

I mean, really, think about it. God created the world. God created you. He knows how you work. God sustains the world. God sustains you. He is sovereign overall. Anxiety and worry result from us trying to be in control. Never happened for you? It did for me on that sleepless night. I was running every scenario, right? God, if I would've done this, God, if I could have this God if this would happen. God was doing something bigger than I could see, God was making it better than I could've imagined. But I was trying to control it. So often we do that. I want this to happen and God's going, "That's it? I'm doing something bigger."

22:41 | Jeff Simmons

Trust me. Trust God is in control. Trust that he can handle it. Trust that whatever's going on in your life, that God's got it. It's not catching him by surprise. God's got it. Trust that he is in control. It's going to come down to a matter of this.

23:02 | Jeff Simmons

Hey, secondly, recognize God can bring healing in your life in this area of anxiety, worry, and fear. The Lord is, right? The Lord is, and I love that because God is at work in your life. Maybe you think, "Oh no, no, no, no, he's not." Oh yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. He is. The reason you're here today is because God is at work in your life. God is drawing you to himself. God is inviting you in. God is pulling you close. God is at work in your life. He came to meet you here right now today.

23:38 | Jeff Simmons

Anxiety is a spiritual matter along with physical, mental, and emotional. We're going to talk about this from a holistic. It has implications, our physical, our mental, our emotional, but at the root of it is going to come back to your heart. At the root of it is what we believe about God.

23:55 | Jeff Simmons

It is spiritual. Now, don't face this struggle alone. This is the mistake that Elijah made, right? Elijah runs off 40 days and 40 nights to be alone. We don't have to face this struggle alone. God can use others such as parents, friends, pastors, and Christ-centered counselors in our lives. You know that. That's what God put people in our lives for. That's why we're in Community Groups. That's why we're in church.

24:21 | Jeff Simmons

That's why we're in community. We need one another, but we have to be real. We have to be authentic. We have to talk about what's going on in our lives or where our struggles are. We open up. Everybody's facing a struggle, right? Everybody is fighting a battle. Sometimes we think, "Well, I just got to put a front on. I've got it all figured out." No, you don't. We all know, we're all in that for us to be honest with each other. Then there's time to go to a counselor.

24:46 | Jeff Simmons

What's interesting is a lot of times, while growing up, we'll have a coach, right? For baseball, basketball, volleyball. You got a coach. Then we get older and we're like, "I don't need anybody. I'll figure it all out." I think about counseling a lot of ways like that. You have a coach. In your marriage, there's struggles, your life or with your kids or people that are there that are walking with you that we can hear from these people. We can share what's going on in our lives.

25:14 | Jeff Simmons

Hey, God could use medicine to bring healing. God can work through doctors. We are blessed to live in a technologically advanced society. We are blessed to live where we live. We've got a lot of incredible doctors and nurses in our church. There's ways that God brings healing through that.

25:30 | Jeff Simmons

About a year ago, a good friend of mine, we were in a Bible study together. We started watching him. His life was just kind of starting to spiral. His anxiety was filling him. We thought well, it was kind of a midlife crisis. You know it's kind of that kind of thing. But then he started going back and studied family history. This was a pattern in his life with his dad and others. By God's grace, he was able to get into counseling. By God's grace, able to get some medicine. By God's grace, he was able to go to a treatment program. I want to tell you, he said the other day, we were in Bible study. He goes, 'Man, I don't know where I would be without you guys. I would be wherever be without the Lord coming in and just meeting me," and here he is today.

26:10 | Jeff Simmons

It was in that moment that he accepted Christ and gave his life fully. He committed his life fully to Christ. He goes, "It was so hard, but God worked with me in the middle of that. Look at what God's doing in my life now." This guy is amazing. He is on fire for the Lord and just the impact that he's having. I'm so grateful and so thankful, that God will meet us in those dark moments. God will meet us in those hard times. Hey, don't miss this, because of God there's always hope. Guys. There is always hope. I don't know what you're facing in your life, I don't know what your kids are facing. I don't know what the people around you are facing, but listen where there's God, there's hope.

Where there's God, there's hope.

26:49 | Jeff Simmons

God is at work. Trust him. Hold onto him. The Lord is. The Lord is my, my. Focus your heart and your mind on the things of God. Right? Not just my family's faith, not just my country's faith, not just, hey, I'll kind of get by here. No, no, no, no. My relationship with the Lord. Focus my heart and my mind. God longs to have a personal relationship with you through Jesus. That's why Jesus died on the cross, that you have a personal relationship with God. There comes a moment of surrender for you. There comes a moment where you say, "God, you are God and I need help and I need healing in my life. God, forgive me of my sins. God, I want to be made new." Have you ever received Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and savior?

27:41 | Jeff Simmons

I'm glad you’re at church but being at church doesn't make you a Christian. There comes a time as God draws you to himself and you step over that line, you say, "Yes, Lord Jesus, here's my heart, Lord, take and seal it. It's yours." I want to be a follower of Christ. There is salvation and then there's sanctification.

28:01 | Jeff Simmons

Right? Salvation is us trusting Christ with our lives, eternity. But sanctification is us maturing. It's that discipleship. It's us growing to look more like Jesus every day and we have to ask ourselves, is my life looking more like the world or is my life starting to look more like Jesus? Many of you notice this about Jesus. Jesus was never in a hurry.

Salvation is us trusting Christ with our lives, eternity. But sanctification is us maturing.

28:25 | Jeff Simmons

Yet he accomplished more than all of us? Right? Jesus wasn't stressed out. Jesus knew. I mean, are we looking more and more like the world? Are we falling into that pattern or are we becoming sanctified more like Christ? Are we focusing on him? Are we focusing on the things of God? We've got to change our thinking. We've got to change our thinking. When all of a sudden, we have all this stuff in our lives. Hey, if I'm going to go back here and just like look at God's Word if I'm going to go back here and say, "What am I listening to? Let me change the song in my mind. Let me put the things of God in my mind and in my heart." Well, let me focus on him. Let me focus on him. Look at this one. Understand excessive worry is essentially practical atheism.

Understand excessive worry is essentially practical atheism.

29:13 | Jeff Simmons

Really, when you boil it down, right? Excessive worry is practically atheism, a little anxiety, worry and/or fear is healthy. I mean, God created this. God gave us this fear. God gave us this anxiety and this worry in a healthy dose. We need fear, right? You need fear. If you're going hiking and you come up on a cave and there's a bear in the cave, you need some fear that says get out of dodge, right? You don't need to go, "I have no fear. I'm going to go pet the bear. Hello, bear." That doesn't go well. Thank God for the fear. If you come up on a rattlesnake, run. Okay? I'm just telling you; I grew up in Texas. Those things can jump, right, and they coil up. They can jump the length of their bodies. That's like six feet, so you don't even get close. Don't try to pet the rattlesnake or take a picture and post it on Instagram.

30:03 | Jeff Simmons

Don't do that, right? Just fear. Go move. Anxiety. You need a little bit. We need a little bit, a little bit's healthy. A little bit gets us up off the couch and says, "Hey, I've got an important speech to, it's going to happen at work. I've got an important presentation that's going to happen at school. I've got to do something. I can't just lay here." There's a little bit that gets us going. It is healthy.

30:27 | Jeff Simmons

We need a little bit of that in our lives that helps us perform. That helps us reach our best, but excessive anxiety, worry and/or fear says, "I don't believe in God." We just get consumed and just like, "Ah, I'm just going to push God away." Jesus is called the Good Shepherd. If you go from the Old Testament and the New Testament, John chapter 10 Jesus says, I am the what? Good Shepherd. Think about that for a moment. Jesus is the Good Shepherd. He says, "My sheep know my voice. They listen to me. Can you hear the voice of God? Can you hear the still small voice that speaks?

31:13 | Jeff Simmons

Because God's drawing you to himself. The early Christians, when they went through persecution and struggles and many were hiding out in the catacombs, some of the most beautiful paintings that they did was about Jesus being the shepherd and putting them on his back, holding that sheep close, walking with that sheep.

31:34 | Jeff Simmons

Number five remember you lack nothing. Think about it. You lack nothing. With the Lord as your shepherd, he's going to take care of you, he's going to meet your needs. He already has. When you think back over your life and the times that you were so worried and the times that you were so stressed, God came through, didn't he? I mean, you're here today, right? There were times you didn't know how it's going to go down. You prayed like crazy and God came through every single time. You lack nothing, always be grateful. I think being grateful is the antidote.

32:15 | Jeff Simmons

I really do. I think being grateful is that antidote. With that worry, that fear, anxiety rears its ugly head and just go, "Look at God. He always comes through." The Lord is my shepherd. It says Jesus willingly died on a cross to meet your ultimate need and salvation. Guys, then there is nothing he will not do for you. There is nothing He will not do for you. He gave His life for you. And my call for us, be anxious for nothing. Elijah met God on that mountain and his whole life has changed.

There is nothing He will not do for you.

32:54 | Jeff Simmons

He didn't stay on the mountain, right? He went back, but he went back in the boldness of the Lord God who sent him. We're going to go back tomorrow into our workplaces. We'll be back in our families this afternoon. We'll be back in our marriages and our situations, but we go back in the name of the Lord. We go back knowing that God is with us, that God is for us. When that anxiety comes, when that worry comes in, there is that check engine light. When the check engine light comes on in your car, you don't sit there and go, "Hey, how can I fix that check engine light, right?"

33:28 | Jeff Simmons

How can I make sure that that I could turn that check engine light off? You know what you do? You take the car to the one who made the car. You take it to the dealership and say, "Hey, can you service this? Can you fix this?" When that anxiety starts to come, when that worry or that fear, it comes in your life, you go to the one who created you. You go to the one who says, "Hey, I am your shepherd." It's a warning sign for us. Hey, go to God. Go to Him with your life, with your heart, with your struggle, with your fear, with your worry.

33:59 | Jeff Simmons

God, here it is. God, I know this, I lack nothing. God, you are with me. You're for me. You love me. God, I am Yours. God, today, would You just put Your hand under our chin and lift our eyes to see You. They'll take our eyes on all the struggles and the worries that we have. God, just let us see you and know that You're at work in those worries and in those struggles. God, that you are enough for me. I don't know where you are today, but I know this, God is here. Just like you said to Elijah, Elijah, what are you doing here? I pray today that you would say, "I've come to meet with God. I've come to hear from him."


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