In her down-to-earth book More Than Sparrows, Mary Welch tells of her discussion with a group of high schoolers about worry. Although they were Christians, they were as worried as pagans about the common things of life. As she listened to them with love, yearning to help them, an unusual idea came to her for a game they could play. It went like this:
Instead of saying, “I’m worried,” stop and say, “The Lord is my Shepherd.” Then add, “So I’m worried to death!” The students laughed at the idea, but they all promised to play this new “peace-of-mind” game.
Later Mary received a phone call from a young woman who had been paralyzed by worry over an exam she had been dreading to take. She said, “I must tell you how the game helped me trust God today. As I froze with worry, I remembered to say, ‘The Lord is my Shepherd . . . so I’m afraid I’ll fail!’ Suddenly I felt the strangest peace of mind. I laughed at myself, then I took the exam and passed!”
Saying in one breath, “The Lord is my Shepherd and I am worried to death” is more than a mind game to point out the absurdity of worry. God can use it to bring us to a fuller trust in Him.
Into His hands I lay the fears that haunt me,
The dread of future ills that may befall;
Into His hands I lay the doubts that taunt me,
And rest securely, trusting Him for all. —Christiansen
Worry is the interest you pay on borrowed trouble.