“No one can pray and worry at the same time.”
– Max Lucado
Max Lucado Prayer and Worry Quote Commentary
Max Lucado’s quote above gets to the heart of modern anxiety. With Jesus, anxiety is impossible. When we trust Jesus fully, we are relying fully on his power instead of our own. This, of course, takes a lot of trust. This takes believing in Jesus’ power and setting aside our own power, our own capabilities, our own pride. This is why this is so hard for many of us. Jesus asks us to take a leap of faith. He asks us to give up hope on everything except him. Truthfully, this is very hard for us to do. Just like Lot’s wife, we can’t help but look back when Jesus tells us to look straight ahead at Him. We can’t help but look back at our own strength, our own pride, our own fear, our own unforgiveness, and sense of hurt. Instead of moving forward with all our strength towards his outstretched arms, we walk forward reluctantly as we constantly look back.
Just like Lot’s wife, we find ourselves paralyzed. We may not get turned into a pillar of salt but we definitely get frozen into place. Worry paralyzes us. It makes things look impossible. We think we’re doing something about the problem by worrying but worrying doesn’t do anything about our problem. Over-analyzing and over-thinking doesn’t free us from our problems. Instead, they magnify how bad we have it until we feel that there is no hope. We keep thinking and thinking but this only leads us to see how seemingly hopeless, frustrating, and sad our problem is. Make no mistake about it-worrying is like digging your own grave. You can only go deeper and deeper.
Jesus bears our load and we regain our freedom through prayer
When we pray to Jesus, we lay all our problems on him. We finally give our problems to someone who can actually do something about them. We finally entrust our burdens to someone with the strength to fully carry them. Worry is impossible when we pray because when we pray, we submit to Jesus and not to our own strength or our own illusions of strength. By letting go, we achieve victory. By placing our trust in God fully, we free ourselves from the harsh bonds tying down to our pain, our worries, our disappointments. Worrying is the opposite of faith. If you are tired of carrying your problems, isn’t it time to stop carrying and cast that burden off your shoulders by getting down on your knees to pray?