Why Worry?Published Feb 07, 2018 | Precious Truths, Bill Jenkin III
Our family has been blessed with many occasions to travel as we’ve served the Lord. I know many, if not all of you, have had abundant experiences with people and places you would not have opportunity if you weren’t in the ministry. Our kids enjoyed the privilege as we traveled on deputation and in our church planting ministries. I used to tell them that I can only think of three groups of people that can travel like we do: the rich, hoboes, and missionaries. Even today, our travel and vacations include ministry opportunities.
A couple of years ago I was planning an Alaskan fishing trip. I was excited to fly into Juneau, and take a float plane west to the remote little fishing village of Pelican. My hosts were from Strait View Baptist Church, our CBM church plant in Port Angeles, Washington. Their cabin was beautifully nestled on a steep bank of the Lisianski Straits. The trip would be unusual in the sense that there would be no preaching—yup, that’s it—just a fishing trip. But about a month before heading out, I got an email from the Pelican Village clerk. She was a member of the Pelican Bible Church and told me that she’d heard that I was a preacher and would be in Pelican over two specific Sundays (she named the dates), and asked if I would preach! These were Bible-believing folks and I readily accepted. Through further communication I learned that they rented their building to the Catholics who would have their service before ours.
Sunday morning we headed through the Straits to make the 5-mile boat trip to the village. We were plenty early so I could meet the Catholics and invite them to our meeting. I warmly greeted a handful of folks at the close of their service and encouraged them to stay—not only for the service—but for dinner afterward (I do pretty well at making myself at home). To my delight, some of them stayed, including the priest! I’m a sharp fellow; I could tell he was the priest by his long flowing white robe highlighted with gold and red trim and his fancy hat that looked like a crown, also trimmed with gold and red and sporting a gold metal cross on top.
We ended up with about 25 people. I’d decided on interactive teaching and had prepared a two-part message—Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God (Philippians 4:4-6). Church was informal and interactive as I taught on God’s cure for worry. One of the Catholic ladies spoke right up and politely disagreed saying she believed that we should worry even though it’s unhealthy. She firmly believed God expects us to worry!
I shared my personal relationship with Christ and carefully explained that the Bible says we shouldn’t worry, thinking that would settle the issue! But even with the efforts of others, we realized we were not making progress. Her mind was made up! The bottom line was that the Bible had no authority in her life! Although saddened in my spirit, I was refreshed to yet again realize blatant differences between religion and genuine Christianity. But I was also challenged! You see, I readily say the Bible is my authority, yet I must be careful and disciplined to act accordingly—whether the issue is worry or other temptations that ultimately provide opportunities to flesh out the joy of authentic Christianity.