Fall is back, which means football is back, which means in theory I should be happy. However being a fan of the Miami Dolphins and the NC State Wolfpack, that is not always the case. But hopefully this season will be different! With football season back it also means fantasy football is back. If you have never played fantasy football… good, keep it that way! For those of you who do play fantasy, you know the added stress it can add to your life. All week long you look at your team and debate what players to start, you debate what trades to make or which ones to accept, you debate whether or not the ESPN analysts really know what they are talking about or if their projections are wrong. Then Sunday comes and every time one of your players is on the field you hope every time they touch the ball they break it for a touchdown. When you start to fall behind in your game, you start calculating how many yards and touchdowns you need your players to get for you to win and if it is even possible for it to happen. Then you notice the players on your bench are actually doing good this week and if you had started them you would have nothing to worry about. But you didn’t, so you do. Fantasy football can take Sundays from the most relaxing, peaceful day of your week and turn them into the most stressful, agonizing day of the week. All this and hopefully after the Monday night game you have come out on top. And that is what we call fun haha.
Last Sunday night as I was laying in my bed thinking to myself, “If I had only started Gonzales and Green-Ellis I could win this week.” Then I realized I was actually keeping myself up by stressing about a fantasy football game. I realized how dumb this was. In the grand scheme of things how much was this really going to matter? Not at all. When I see God face to face he isn’t going to ask me why I had those guys on my bench.
I think a lot of times we worry and stress about things that really have no importance. But there as also times where we worry and stress about things that can be important, like grades, bills, friends, jobs. But when we worry and stress, we are not trusting in God. Francis Chan said it like this in his book Crazy Love, “Worry implies that we don’t quite trust that God is big enough, powerful enough, or loving enough to take care of what is happening in our lives. Stress says that the things we are involved in are important enough to merit our impatience, our lack of grace toward others, or our tight grip of control.” Worry and stress are very selfish perspectives. When we worry and stress we are focused on ourselves. Paul said it like this in Philippians 4:6, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.”
Ok, so I shouldn’t worry about anything, got it. Wait… what?!?!?! You can’t be serious God. There is no way you could expect me not to worry about ANYTHING!! Doesn’t that sound familiar? Haven’t you thought that just about every time you have read that verse. I know I have. But in the end, yes God is serious, and yes he does expect that. Worry and stress are not from God and you don’t have to live with them. Tell them to pack their bags and kick them to the curb! “But Nick that is crazy, how can we do that?” Bobby McFerrin was on to something when he wrote “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” But he did miss the mark a little bit. It should go like this… don’t worry, pray. Paul says that instead of worrying we should pray about everything. If something comes up in your life and you start to worry about it, in that moment start to pray about it. Paul also says to thank God for all He has done. When we thank God we remember all the blessing He has given us, all the times He has helped us, all the times He has rescued us. When we remember these thing, we start to see that God can take care of whatever it is we are currently going through.
To not worry and not stress is not an easy task. It is something I have to remind myself of daily. When you find yourself in that same position just remember, don’t worry.. pray.