Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6, 7 NIV)
Several people have asked me if I'm feeling nervous or worried ahead of the launch of our new Sandhurst site. I really appreciate people's concern for me, but I can honestly say I don't feel at all anxious about Sunday or how it is all going to work. That's not to say I won't feel a bit nervous before I get up to speak at each of the 4 meetings on Sunday (I think that's normal and probably quite healthy), but I have no anxiety and haven't had any sleepless nights thinking about the launch of Sandhurst, or the relaunch of the Sunday evening meeting in Bracknell.
That's partly because what we're doing in Sandhurst isn't about one Sunday, but is about us bringing the presence of Jesus to that area for decades to come. How important in retrospect were our first Sunday in the Kerith Centre or the first Sunday after we moved into K2? Not very. What has mattered is what we've done with a relentless persistence over the following years, seeking to love God, love one another and serve our community.
It's also because God is more committed to what we're doing than we are. We aren't doing this as a company trying to find its way in the world, or a charity seeking to do good with the wisdom and resources it has. We're about building the church Jesus told us to build. Of which he said "I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. (Matthew 16:18b NIV)
But finally I'm not worried because I don't think God's plan for our lives is for us to live with anxiety or worry. In fact living as a worried, anxious person can be a very negative thing for us, impacting our mental and physical health, our witness, our work, our sleep, our relationships and our walk with God. That's why Paul tells us that when we are worried we should turn the anxiety into prayer, handing over the responsibility and control to God so that he can replace our worry with his peace - an amazing exchange.
What are you worried about at the moment? Why don't you right now resolve to stop worrying, and to start turning your anxiety to prayer, giving it over to God. It's so much more productive a use of your time, and so much better a way to live!