Patricia Hofer

Oswald Chambers on worrying and “fretting”

Oswald Chambers said that “fretting is wickedness for a child of God.” At first, that seemed a little extreme to me. That’s because fretting, as we might use it today, is more about small things, the emotional push and pull that wears us down. But Chambers also said, “Fretting rises from our determination to have our own way” (July 4). That I recognized. Even in the small things, and maybe particularly in the small things, we’re determined to get what we want. When we don’t, we fret. … Jesus encountered such fretfulness all the time. Someone was no doubt fretting about the lack of wine at a wedding. Peter fretted when they caught no fish. The disciples fretted when they didn’t have enough bread. They fretted during the storm. They fretted on the way to Jerusalem. They fretted over who would be greatest. But Jesus didn’t participate in such fretful worrying. As Chambers concluded: “Our Lord never worried and was never anxious, because His purpose was never to accomplish His own plans but to fulfill God’s plans” (July 4, My Utmost for His Highest. As quoted in Living Large, chapter 45, ©️ 2013)

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