What if you used to get angry at everything other people said. I mean, you got into arguments all the time. If someone held a stopwatch on you, the time from initiation of conversation to your explosion was thirty seconds or less. When James says the tongue is “A restless evil, full of deadly poison,” illustrated Bibles had your picture.
And what if you started asking God to help you control your anger. You were tired of the pain you caused.
And what if someone held a stopwatch on you now and discovered that the time from initiation of conversation to your explosion is now five minutes. And your words are more like M-80s than sticks of dynamite.
Are you more likely to focus on the explosions that still happen (“I just can’t control myself. I’m always causing problems”) or on the progress that is being made (“I can still get in trouble, but God’s helping me control myself.”)
What if you worried all the time. About everything. About whether people would like you, about whether you should wear this shirt or that one, about whether you might, someday, lose your job (if the economy turns and if your boss gets the flu and there is no one to defend you, “It could happen, you know.”).
And what if you read that Paul said to not worry about anything, but to make your requests known to God. And so you started asking God to give you peace. And you started to think about God’s goodness.
And now you worry about 25% of the time, and only about things that have a 75% chance of happening.
Are you more likely to think of yourself as a worrier (“I still worry a lot”) or a truster (“God’s brought me a long way.”)