Mind, Character, and Personality, vol. 2


Chapter 50—Worry and Anxiety

Worry, Not Work, Kills—It is not work that kills; it is worry. The only way to avoid worry is to take every trouble to Christ. Let us not look on the dark side. Let us cultivate cheerfulness of spirit.—Letter 208, 1903. 2MCP 466.1

Dwelling Upon the Difficulties—Some are always fearing and borrowing trouble. Every day they are surrounded with the tokens of God's love; every day they are enjoying the bounties of His providence; but they overlook these present blessings. Their minds are continually dwelling upon something disagreeable which they fear may come; or some difficulty may really exist which, though small, blinds their eyes to the many things that demand gratitude. The difficulties they encounter, instead of driving them to God, the only source of their help, separate them from him because they awaken unrest and repining.—Steps to Christ, 121, 122 (1892). 2MCP 466.2

Worry Makes the Burden Heavy—I greatly fear that we are in danger, by worrying, of manufacturing yokes for our necks. Let us not worry; for thus we make the yoke severe and the burden heavy. Let us do all we can without worrying, trusting in Christ. Study His words, “All things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive” (Matthew 21:22). These words are the pledge that all that an omnipotent Saviour can bestow will be given to those who trust in Him. As stewards of the grace of heaven, we are to ask in faith and then wait trustingly for the salvation of God. We are not to step in before Him, trying in our own strength to bring about that which we desire. In His name we are to ask, and then we are to act as if we believed in His efficiency.—Letter 123, 1904. 2MCP 466.3

Not the Will of God—It is not the will of God that His people should be weighed down with care.—Steps to Christ, 122 (1892). 2MCP 467.1

Anxiety Tends to Sickness and Disease—When wrongs have been righted, we may present the needs of the sick to the Lord in calm faith, as His Spirit may indicate. He knows each individual by name and cares for each as if there were not another upon the earth for whom He gave His beloved Son. Because God's love is so great and so unfailing, the sick should be encouraged to trust in Him and be cheerful. To be anxious about themselves tends to cause weakness and disease. If they will rise above depression and gloom, their prospect of recovery will be better; for “the eye of the Lord is upon them” “that hope in His mercy” (Psalm 33:18).—The Ministry of Healing, 229 (1905). 2MCP 467.2

Cease Worrying (counsel to friend facing death)—I keep your case before me, and I am grieved that you are troubled in mind. I would comfort you if it were in my power. Has not Jesus, the precious Saviour, been to you so many times a present help in times of need? Do not grieve the Holy Spirit, but cease worrying. This is what you have many times talked to others. Let the words of those who are not sick, as you are, comfort you, and may the Lord help you, is my prayer.—Letter 365, 1904. (Selected Messages 2:253.) 2MCP 467.3

Worrying Ourselves Out of the Arms of Jesus—If we educated our souls to have more faith, more love, greater patience, a more perfect trust in our heavenly Father, we would have more peace and happiness as we pass through the conflicts of this life. The Lord is not pleased to have us fret and worry ourselves out of the arms of Jesus. He is the only source of every grace, the fulfillment of every promise, the realization of every blessing....Our pilgrimage would indeed be lonely were it not for Jesus. “I will not leave you comfortless” (John 14:18), He says to us. Let us cherish His words, believe His promises, repeat them by day and meditate upon them in the night season, and be happy.—Manuscript 75, 1893. (Our High Calling, 120.) 2MCP 468.1

Resting in Christ's Love—Let us turn from the dusty, heated thoroughfares of life to rest in the shadow of Christ's love. Here we gain strength for conflict. Here we learn how to lessen toil and worry and how to speak and sing to the praise of God. Let the weary and the heavy-laden learn from Christ the lesson of quiet trust. They must sit under His shadow if they would be possessors of His peace and rest.—Testimonies for the Church 7:69, 70 (1902). 2MCP 468.2

God's Responsibility and Mine—When we take into our hands the management of things with which we have to do and depend upon our own wisdom for success, we are taking a burden which God has not given us and are trying to bear it without His aid. We are taking upon ourselves the responsibility that belongs to God, and thus are really putting ourselves in His place. We may well have anxiety and anticipate danger and loss, for it is certain to befall us. But when we really believe that God loves us and means to do us good, we shall cease to worry about the future. We shall trust God as a child trusts a loving parent. Then our troubles and torments will disappear, for our will is swallowed up in the will of God.—Thoughts From the Mount of Blessing, 100, 101 (1896). 2MCP 468.3

Borrowed Care and Anxiety—In trusting in God continually there is safety; there will not be a constant fear of future evil. This borrowed care and anxiety will cease. We have a heavenly Father who careth for His children, and will and does make His grace sufficient in every time of need.—Testimonies for the Church 2:72 (1868). 2MCP 469.1

Leaving the Future With God—Though their present needs are supplied, many are unwilling to trust God for the future, and they are in constant anxiety lest poverty shall come upon them, and their children shall be left to suffer. Some are always anticipating evil, or magnifying the difficulties that really exist, so that their eyes are blinded to the many blessings which demand their gratitude. The obstacles they encounter—instead of leading them to seek help from God, the only source of strength-separate them from him because they awaken unrest and repining.... 2MCP 469.2

Jesus is our friend; all heaven is interested in our welfare; and our anxiety and fear grieve the Holy Spirit of God. We should not indulge in a solicitude that only frets and wears us but does not help us to bear trials. No place should be given to that distrust of God which leads us to make a preparation against future want the chief pursuit of life, as though our happiness consisted in these earthly things.—Patriarchs and Prophets, 293, 294 (1890). 2MCP 469.3

Undue Anxiety—God does not condemn prudence and foresight in the use of the things of this life; but the feverish care, the undue anxiety, with respect to worldly things is not in accordance with his will.—The Review and Herald, March 1, 1887. (Counsels on Stewardship, 159.) 2MCP 469.4

Anxiety Weakens Physical Power—The trials and anxieties that Paul had endured had preyed upon his physical powers.—The Acts of the Apostles, 488 (1911). 2MCP 469.5

Christians With Anxious Hearts—Many who profess to be Christ's followers have an anxious, troubled heart because they are afraid to trust themselves with God. They do not make a complete surrender to Him, for they shrink from the consequences that such a surrender may involve. Unless they do make this surrender they cannot find peace.—The Ministry of Healing, 480, 481 (1905). 2MCP 469.6

Minute by Minute—There is one thing that I want to caution you about. Do not fret or worry; it does not pay to do this. Do not try to do too much. If you do not undertake too much, you will succeed in accomplishing much more than if you try to carry out too many plans. Constantly bear in mind the words of Christ, “Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation” (Mark 14:38). Christ is your personal Saviour. Believe that His saving power is exercised in your behalf minute by minute, hour by hour. He is by your side in every time of need.—Letter 150, 1903. 2MCP 470.1

Do Not Cross Bridges Before Time—Now we want to act like individuals who are redeemed by the blood of Christ; we are to rejoice in the blood of Christ and in the forgiveness of sins. That is what we are to do, and may God help us to get our minds off the dark pictures and think on those things that will give us light. Now I want to read another scripture, “Be careful for nothing” (Philippians 4:6). What does that mean?—Why, don't cross a bridge before you get to it. Don't make a time of trouble before it comes. You will get to it soon enough, brethren. We are to think of today, and if we do well the duties of today, we will be ready for the duties of tomorrow.—Manuscript 7, 1888. 2MCP 470.2

Seeking to Reach World's Standards—There are many whose hearts are aching under a load of care because they seek to reach the world's standard. They have chosen its service, accepted its perplexities, adopted its customs. Thus their character is marred, and their life made a weariness. In order to gratify ambition and worldly desires, they wound the conscience and bring upon themselves an additional burden of remorse. The continual worry is wearing out the life forces. 2MCP 470.3

Our Lord desires them to lay aside this yoke of bondage. He invites them to accept His yoke; He says, “My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.” He bids them seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and His promise is that all things needful to them for this life shall be added. 2MCP 471.1

Worry is blind and cannot discern the future, but Jesus sees the end from the beginning. In every difficulty He has His way prepared to bring relief.—The Desire of Ages, 330 (1898). 2MCP 471.2

Faith Can Be Invincible—Do not worry. By looking at appearances and complaining when difficulty and pressure come, you reveal a sickly, enfeebled faith. By your words and your works show that your faith is invincible. The Lord is rich in resources. He owns the world. Look to Him who has light, and power, and efficiency. He will bless everyone who is seeking to communicate light and love.—Testimonies for the Church 7:212 (1902). 2MCP 471.3

Plants Do Not Grow Through Worry or Conscious Effort—In place of growing anxious with the thought that you are not growing in grace, just do every duty that presents itself, carry the burden of souls on your heart, and by every conceivable means seek to save the lost. Be kind, be courteous, be pitiful; speak in humility of the blessed hope; talk of the love of Jesus; tell of His goodness, his mercy, and His righteousness; and cease to worry as to whether or not you are growing. Plants do not grow through any conscious effort....The plant is not in continual worriment about its growth; it just grows under the supervision of God.—The Youth's Instructor, February 3, 1898. (My Life Today, 103.) 2MCP 471.4

Remedy for Anxiety—God cares for everything and sustains everything that He has created....No tears are shed that He does not notice. There is no smile that He does not mark. 2MCP 471.5

If we would but fully believe this, all undue anxieties would be dismissed. Our lives would not be so filled with disappointment as now; for everything, whether great or small, would be left in the hands of God, who is not perplexed by the multiplicity of cares or overwhelmed by their weight. We should then enjoy a rest of soul to which many have long been strangers.—Steps to Christ, 86 (1892). 2MCP 472.1

Faith Dispels Anxiety—We are so anxious, all of us, for happiness, but many rarely find it because of their faulty methods of seeking, in the place of striving. We must strive most earnestly and mingle all our desires with faith. Then happiness steals in upon us almost unsought.... When we can, notwithstanding disagreeable circumstances, rest confidingly in His love and shut ourselves in with Him, resting peacefully in His love, the sense of His presence will inspire a deep, tranquil joy. This experience gains for us a faith that enables us not to fret, not to worry, but to depend upon a power that is infinite.—Letter 57, 1897. (My Life Today, 184.) 2MCP 472.2

The One Principle—Those who accept the one principle of making the service and honor of God supreme will find perplexities vanish and a plain path before their feet.—The Desire of Ages, 330 (1898). 2MCP 472.3

Taking One Day at a Time, a Most Important Principle—The faithful discharge of today's duties is the best preparation for tomorrow's trials. Do not gather together all tomorrow's liabilities and cares and add them to the burden of today. “Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof” (Matthew 6:34).—The Ministry of Healing, 481 (1905). 2MCP 472.4

One day alone is ours, and during this day we are to live for God. For this one day we are to place in the hand of Christ, in solemn service, all our purposes and plans, casting all our care upon Him, for He careth for us. “I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” “In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength” (Jeremiah 29:11; Isaiah 30:15).—Thoughts From the Mount of Blessing, 101 (1896). 2MCP 472.5

Let us not make ourselves miserable over tomorrow's burdens. Bravely and cheerfully carry the burdens of today. Today's trust and faith we must have. But we are not asked to live more than a day at a time. He who gives strength for today will give strength for tomorrow.—The Signs of the Times, November 5, 1902. (In Heavenly Places, 269.) 2MCP 473.1

Strength for Every Trial—Our heavenly Father measures and weighs every trial before He permits it to come upon the believer. He considers the circumstances and the strength of the one who is to stand under the proving and test of God, and He never permits the temptations to be greater than the capacity of resistance. If the soul is overborne, the person overpowered, this can never be charged to God, as failing to give strength in grace, but the one tempted was not vigilant and prayerful and did not appropriate by faith the provisions God had abundantly in store for him. Christ never failed a believer in his hour of combat. The believer must claim the promise and meet the foe in the name of the Lord, and he will not know anything like failure.—Manuscript 6, 1889. 2MCP 473.2