Friday, July 14, 2023

Do Not Worry

Friday, July 14, 2023

Do Not Worry – Submitted by Kay Crumley

“I tell you, do not worry. Don’t worry about your life and what you will eat or drink. And don’t worry about your body and what you will wear. Isn’t there more to life than eating? Aren’t there more important things for the body than clothes?  Look at the birds of the air. They don’t plant or gather crops. They don’t put away crops in storerooms. But your Father who is in heaven feeds them. Aren’t you worth much more than they are? Can you add even one hour to your life by worrying? “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the wild flowers grow. They don’t work or make clothing. But here is what I tell you. Not even Solomon in all his royal robes was dressed like one of these flowers. If that is how God dresses the wild grass, won’t he dress you even better? Your faith is so small! After all, the grass is here only today. Tomorrow it is thrown into the fire. So don’t worry. Don’t say, ‘What will we eat?’ Or, ‘What will we drink?’ Or, ‘What will we wear?’  People who are ungodly run after all those things. Your Father who is in heaven knows that you need them.  But put God’s kingdom first. Do what he wants you to do. Then all those things will also be given to you.  So don’t worry about tomorrow. Tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:25-34

Don’t worry is often something we hear but are unable to do.  The verses above are from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount where Matthew records His ‘most famous sermon ever given’ in chapters 5-7.  There are 6 phrases that tell us not to worry in this passage.  Vs 25 is a command, not a suggestion.  The same command is found in Philippians 4:6 when Paul wrote ‘Do not be anxious (worry) about anything”.  There is a list of things not to worry about.  That includes food, water, and clothing.  Jesus used common examples to show the way God provides food to the wildlife and beautiful clothing to the plants. The flowers don’t work for their beauty.  Yet their clothing is more beautiful than even the wealthiest, King Solomon, could find to wear. Why is that a valid comparison to us?  If God so generously provides for the birds all the food they need day to day and to the grass and flowers all the clothing they need, He will provide for us.  Mankind is more important to the Creator Father than all His other creations.  Only humankind was created in His image, Genesis 1:27-28.  According to vs 26 above, we are much more worthy than the birds of the air and the flowers in the field to God.   

Worrying is totally useless.  Jesus asked in vs 27, ‘can you add even one hour to your life by worrying’?  Of course, we cannot.  In truth, worry can harm our lives rather than help us live longer.  Research shows that worry is detrimental to our overall physical and mental well-being. What reasons are given for us to not worry in this passage?  There are more important things in life than what we eat or what we wear, vs. 25.  We are valuable to the Father, vs 26.  He knows what we need, vs 32.  The ungodly or idolaters chase after earthly things, vs 32.   

What is our antidote to worry?  The answer is found in our key verse, vs 33.  Seek His Kingdom first, actively obey His plan for your life.  Then, all the basic needs of life will be provided to you.  God demands that His Kingdom rule be first in your life. Righteousness is the standard for His people to be rightly related to Him.   As followers of Jesus, we are to live in accordance to His standards and guidelines.  We will face challenges and suffering in this life.  But those who are aligned with His Kingdom will experience provision from our Father.  Align yourself with His agenda, and your Heavenly Father will take responsibility for meeting your needs.  Take life one day at a time, vs 34.  Focusing on living for God’s Kingdom today is the antidote to worry.


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