Will Worrying Make Matters Any Better?
(J.R. Miller, “Daily Bible Readings in the Life of Christ” 1890)
“Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?” Matthew 6:27
So it is useless to worry! A short person cannot, by any amount of anxiety, make himself an inch taller. Why, therefore, should he waste his energy and fret his life away–in wishing he were taller?
One worries because he is too short–another because he is too tall; one worries because he too lean–another because he is too heavy; one worries because he has a lame foot–another because he has a mole on his face. No amount of fretting will change any of these things!
People worry, too, over their circumstances. They are poor, and have to work hard. They have troubles, losses, and disappointments which come through causes entirely beyond their own control. They find difficulties in their environment which they cannot surmount. There are hard conditions in their lot which they cannot change.
Now why should they worry about these things? Will worrying make matters any better? Will discontent . . . cure the blind eye, or remove the ugly mole, or give health to the infirm body?
Will chafing make . . .the hard work, lighter; or the burdens, easier; or the troubles, fewer?
Will anxiety . . .keep the winter away, or keep the storm from rising, or put coal in the cellar, or put bread in the pantry, or get clothes for the children?
Even human reason shows the uselessness of worrying, since it helps nothing, and only wastes one’s strength and unfits one for doing one’s best!
The Christian gospel goes farther, and says that even the hard things and the obstacles, are blessings–if we meet them in the right spirit. They are stepping-stones lifting our feet upward–disciplinary experiences in which we grow.
So we learn that we should quietly, and with faith in God’s Providence, accept life as it comes to us–fretting at nothing, yet changing hard conditions to easier ones if we can. And if we cannot–then we must use them as means for growth and advancement.