Todd Shupe On Anxiety, Waiting: Have Faith, For 'God Is Our Partner'
Waiting is a daily occurrence: We wait in line at the grocery store, post office or on the phone. Sometimes, we are waiting long-term for news regarding a loved one who has suddenly become ill or was in an accident. Waiting is also a part of joyous occasions such as the birth of a child or marriage. In any case, worrying almost always leads to anxiety. Todd Shupe, former LSU wood sciences professor, lab director and Christian ministry volunteer, has five favorite scriptures that he refers to in times of waiting.
1) In Isaiah 40:31, it says: “…but those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.”
According to Todd Shupe — whose leadership roles at LSU and Christian groups such as Gulf Men South and Iron Sharpens Iron — we follow God and he doesn’t follow us. The Lord is promising us His stamina if we have faith in Him. Our faith is demonstrated by maintaining our faith while waiting and knowing that he will act.
2) In Psalm 46:10, He says: “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
“This is calming scripture in times of worry,” says former LSU professor Todd Shupe, who adds that the above passage has been his “’go-to’ verse in times of uncertainty.” Moreover, he encourages you to meditate on each word of “Be still, and know that I am God” and the peace that surpasses all understanding shall be yours.
3) Matthew 6:26-27 reads: “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life?”
Our God loves us more than we can begin to comprehend. God will provide His daily bread to us all.
4) In Philippians 4:6-7,it states: “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.”
Once we have prayed and given our worries to God, we are freeing ourselves from the chains of anxiety. God will take our worry and replace it with a peace that cannot be described with mere human words, according to Todd Shupe.
5) In Matthew 11:28-30, it reads: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
God is our partner and once we accept His yoke and let Him work in tandem with us, we can accomplish so much more, says former wood science professor and LSU lab director Todd Shupe.
“When a friend helps you through a difficult period, he or she is acting as the body of Christ and providing His yoke to you. In turn, you will hopefully pass the yoke on to somebody else when they are in need,” Shupe says.
In summary, remember that you are loved by God and He wants you to come to him in prayer and unburden yourself of worry and fear. You are far more valuable than the birds in the air and the lilies in the field. In fact, you are a child of the risen Christ.
Prayer: Dear God we live in a fallen world and we have so many worries about ourselves and our loved ones. Help us to give these worries over to you and to not take them back. We know that You have plans to prosper us and not to harm us. We know that You have plans to give us hope and a future. We thank you for your tremendous love which we cannot even begin to fully comprehend. Please help us cast out the fear in our lives and replace it with the confidence that can only come from your love.
Todd Shupe is the President of DrToddShupe.com and is a well recognized expert on wood-based housing and wood science. Shupe worked as a professor and lab director at LSU for over 20 years. He is active in several ministries including his Christian blog ToddShupe.com. Todd is the Secretary of the Baton Rouge District of United Methodist Men, Database Coordinator for Gulf South Men, and volunteer for the Walk to Emmaus, Grace Camp, Iron Sharpens Iron, Open Air Ministries, HOPE Ministries food pantry. Todd is currently preparing to be a Men’s Ministry Specialist through the General Commission of United Methodist Men.