Some Thoughts About Worry

Worry is a killer! Literally, worry kills. It kills the spirit. It kills relationships. It kills careers. Probably worst, worry kills the body.

I have determined that worry has as at least one if its roots the thought that one could have done something else, perhaps something better. Bundled with this is the belief that this lack of doing whatever is going to be the foundation upon which someone will build a failure or a lifetime of heartache. In other words, we fear the consequences of our actions will not be the good consequences, but the worst possible outcomes our imaginations can conceive. To this end, a bit of oblivion can be our friend.But, it is neither healthy nor wise to live in the land of oblivion. There must be at least some intentionality in every aspect of our lives. A person, by necessity concern himself with the possible outcomes of his actions. Wisdom demands this. However, wisdom also demands that we realize that there are certain things which we are not capable of affecting. We must know that there is a point in time in which we have done all we can do. It is at this that worry becomes that purveyor of depression and ulcers and depression and death and other things that I could not begin to enumerate.

I am neither physician nor psychologist. I am a simple preacher of the gospel. So these words should not be substituted for getting the help that is needed. There are certainly occasions that require some of that professional intervention which God has provided. Here I simply offer some food for thought which may alleviate some of the temptation to be a chronic worrier.

  1. Be prepared (Yes I am in scouting). This is not to assume that we can see into the future and predict every situation. But we do know with certainty that we will face some things. The kids will move out, finances will get tight, disagreements will happen, we will have to let go of some things which are dear. Don’t let these times sneak up and take you by surprise. Make some decisions before the need arises to enact them
  2. Learn your limits. If you can’t fix it, or control it, or affect it in any way, accept it. Why harm yourself for something that you can do nothing about? If you are not an auto mechanic, leave the fixing of the car to them. If it is out of your hands, stop grasping for it. There is something akin to insanity in trying to affect that which you simply can’t.
  3. Trust other people. Don’t be one of those who live by the motto, “If you want something done right, do it yourself.” Most likely, there will always be someone other than you who can tackle the task. If it is their task, let them do it. Stop hovering over them. Stop second guessing them. They may even be better suited to the task than you. Let them do it.
  4. Trust God. OK – So I am a preacher and to that end let me just let the Bible speak here. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV). Some reading at the end of Matthew 6 would also be beneficial as well. Simply trusting God is a great way to alleviate all that useless worry.
  5. Remember what momma used to say. You know, she wasn’t always right or relevant. But remember what she and others said. Remember the right and keep it spread all over your circumstances. Remember what was not right to avoid out of synch as well. Learn to value what those from your past have to add to keep you out of worry land.
  6. Learn from others. It is not only important to hear what others have said, it is also important to see what they have done. Let’s face it plainly and clearly. People do stupid things that have undesired consequences. Instead of worrying that you will also garner those consequences, learn from them and don’t copy their behavior. But there is another side to that piece of paper. It is the side where people do great things and garner great consequences. Follow on. Learning from others will not guarantee any particular result. But it sure helps.
  7. Be OK with whatever you call failure. Everyone defines failure differently. Whatever you call it, determine that it will be OK if it comes. Some call this defeatism. Others simply know that one can never achieve greatness 100% of the time. Don’t let those times shatter your existence.

Ephesians 6:10-20

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints — 19 and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.   NKJV


© 2014 Dr. SF Gallagher

I Preached My Father’s Funeral

November 13, 2014

On that Tuesday evening (Oct. 28, 2014)  we summoned the Hospice nurse. His time was close. There was not an overwhelming air of deep sorrow in the house where my mother and I were with a few other family members. We all knew this was the time and he was ready to break through the dark glass to see and know his Lord even as his Lord had known him for 77 years.

About 10 years before, he told me that I was going to preach his funeral and holding his sermon note cards in his hand said “this is what you are going to preach.” I told him something that I seldom ever told him. I told him that I was not going to do that. He just gave me that same look I had seen more often in my lifetime than I care to consider, which said to me the reality was that I was going to preach that sermon at that very time. I still neither wanted to do it, nor think that I could.

As his health declined, I got a bit of an early inheritance. I was given my father’s library. He gave it to me while he was in one of his lucid moments which were becoming Funeral Bible2less frequent. There were still enough of them for him to know that there would be less of them as time went on. He treasured his books and wanted me to use them as did he to prepare for the proclaiming of the best news ever – The news that Jesus Saves. I treasure them as well.

In that stack of stuff that he had been keeping close and not shelved nor boxed was a Bible case with a Bible inside. When I unzipped that small pocket on the front of that case, there it was. The only thing in that pocket was a set of four by six index cards, the kind which he always used for pulpit notes. It was not just a random or recent sermon on that set of cards though. It was the sermon that he told me that I was to preach at his funeral. I was content that I must fulfill this mandate from my father.

That night, to the sound of a CD of him playing hymns on the church organ from a few years earlier, and the muffled sounds of family and friends and a couple of the sweetest caregivers Hospice ever had all half singing and half mumbling the song “When We All Get to Heaven”, my father breathed his last stinky polluted breath on this old earth in his worn and struggling body, and breathed a great big sigh of relief while standing tall and whole, complete in mind and spirit. He entered Heaven. It was a peaceful moment. It was purposeful. It was planned, for “it is appointed unto man once to die” (Hebrews 9:27). On some level that many may not understand, it was even pleasing. On that same level, I find myself a bit jealous.

On October 31, while many others were celebrating demons and death and other dark things, we gathered at the church house and celebrated Heaven and life and the Light of the World, Jesus Christ who had welcomed my father into His Father’s house just a few days earlier. Bro. Jack was remembered by someone from each of the five decades in which he pastored. We sang some of Bro. Jack’s favorite hymns. And Bro. Steve, that’s me, preached one of JFG Obit PicBro. Jack’s sermons.

I know that there is not a shred of Biblical evidence suggesting that he could have been right there with me. I know that he was not and it would be mere selfishness to wish that he were. But, as I said some of his regular phrases and unfolded one of his hand written and personally chosen outlines, I had a clear view, if only in my mind’s eye, of that proud semi-smile which I always saw when he would visit my congregation and hear me  preach what might have also been one of his sermons.


Then the king said to the man of God, “Come home with me and refresh yourself, and I will give you a reward.”  1 Kings 13:7 NKJV

© 2014 SF Gallagher

Back to Malawi



September 12, 2014

 There are a lot of things going on in my life right now. One of the more significant is that I am part of Flame of Fire Ministry – Malawi.

This year I will be making my third journey to be with these beautiful people and share with them about my Lord Jesus Christ and also about how they can share Him with others.

Last year we saw 7,747 people who heard the good news respond to that message. Since then, there have been literally thousands more who have heard and responded. This work continues because there are men and women of God that are part of this work who carry on when we are at home doing our primary work.

February 2015 is quickly approaching, and we have assembled a team of about a dozen men and women to travel to Malawi and continue this work. The plan consists of five men’s and 5 women’s conferences for training and encouragement. We hope to have our second set of equipment for sharing the Jesus Film by then so we can get into some remote places and share the good news in places where they may have never even heard any hint of this news. We will go places where there are no cars or running water or electricity. But, when we leave, there will be followers of Jesus.

Another nice part this journey is that I will be taking my oldest Daughter along. Bethany has a heart for the mission field and has worked this summer to get her passport and begin her preparation for her first international journey for Jesus. She will be representing the PK’s in the conferences among other duties.

I am asking that you put this mission team on your prayer list. Please ask that God will prepare our minds and guard our health before we go. Pray for our team in Malawi as they begin to prepare the fields for our service. And, pray that those who will hear the Good news of Jesus Christ will respond in repentance and faith.

And, if God should lead you to help us go, please contact me for specifics.

See You SONday,

(c) 2014 SF Gallagher




My Garden

August 28, 2014

This year I planted a garden – – Well sort of. My whole garden consists of a single seed taken from some produce that we got at the local grocery store. That single seed is in a scoop of dirt I took from the hump where they just planted my new sewer line — Not where the leak was though. That scoop of dirt is in a peanut butter jar and it is sitting on the window sill. Not much of a garden really, but today there are two tiny little sprout leaves that one can almost see without the aid of a magnifying glass.

There is not really much to brag on here, but a seed was planted and germination has taken place, and there is evidence of growth. Tiny as all this is, it still counts. And so does your corner of work for God. It may be tiny and not visible to anyone at all. But, if it shows even the tiniest little microscopic sprout, it counts and so do you.

I really have no idea what will come of that tiny little sprout. I hope it will become a nice colorful vegetable or two. But even if it doesn’t, I have already seen something amazing for the ten minutes effort I put into my garden. And while I have neither intention nor desire to put any more effort into  it, there is the lingering thought which wonders what might have become of just a bit more effort and a little larger peanut butter jar, or if I had told just one more person about Jesus.

See You SONday


© 2014 SF Gallagher

Ramp Up The ALS Challenge

Tuesday August 26, 2014

I challenge everyone who has been called out and participated in the ALS challenge, and has sent a donation to continue research, to match their monetary gift with another monetary gift to their local church to be used for sharing about salvation through Jesus. And further, to match the discomfort of the ice bath by sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with whomever they feel the most discomfort sharing. No video necessary. No call outs needed. And if you are unsure of what the Gospel of Jesus Christ is, then your part is to go ask at your local church to explain it to you. After all, the point of the ice bath is understanding.  

If you are unsure how to even begin to ask or share, please click on this link right here and read what it says.  It will tell you how to know Jesus