I took a little hiatus from the Sermon on the Mount but it’s time to get back into the word and dive deep into his truths. In this post, Jesus teaches about worry. I think we can all relate to this topic and how we want to control each situation we are in. But that’s not what Jesus intends for us to do! Let’s drink from the truth of His Word.
(v. 25)“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing?
- If as believers we trust Christ to give us life and to save us from our sins, shouldn’t we trust him with the lesser things in life? Jesus didn’t save us and then leave us to fend for ourselves. He wants us to completely trust him in every aspect of our lives – from the biggest thing to the smallest thing. When Jesus gave the disciples the Lord’s Prayer, he said to pray for every day things – Matthew 6:11 says, “Give us today the food we need.” Jesus wants to be Lord of our lives and that means every single thing – from the food we eat, to the clothes we wear, to the gas we put in our cars, to the large bills we have to pay – everything. If God gave us life, we can trust him for the things which are necessary to support life. -William Barclay
(v. 26) Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?
- Birds are hard workers. The average sparrow works hard to make a living. However, birds do not work hard to build up a storehouse or to pile up goods for the unforeseen future. And yet the Lord provides for them by feeding them and sheltering them. If God richly provides for the birds, how much more will he provide for his children? The birds have no worries about their needs being met because they completely trust in their Creator to provide for them. That should be a lesson to us – when the chaos and worries of life come about, we should be looking to our Creator and trusting him to provide for us. Proverbs 3:5 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” We may not understand the things we go through, but we do have a God that sees our needs and provides for us in the toughest times. Let the birds be an example to you – simply trust Him.
(v. 27) Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?
- What are the effects of worry in your life? It can damage your health, make you unproductive, it can give you a negative attitude toward others, it reduces your ability to trust God, it can steal your joy. There are no good effects of allowing worry to be in the center of your life. Charles Spurgeon says that “worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, but only empties today of its strength.” When we worry, we are taking the situation into our own hands and we are not trusting in God who wants to take the situation from us. However, there is a difference between worry and genuine concern. The NLT Study Bible says that, “worry immobilizes, but concern moves you to action.” What if that action was taking our worries and turning them into prayers? Philippians 4:6-7 is written so beautifully in the Message – “ Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.” Just like it says, it’s so wonderful and freeing when Christ replaces the worry in the center of your life!
(v. 28-31)“And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing,yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’
- Jesus is reiterating here that if he clothes the flowers so beautifully, and if he cares so much for wildflowers, won’t he care for his children? What is it that keeps us from trusting in him completely? It is our lack of faith that we have and not completely trusting in his provision. Warren Wiersbe says that, “God feeds the birds and clothes the lilies. He will feed and clothe us. It is our ‘little faith’ that hinders Him from working as He would. He has great blessings for us if only we will yield to Him and live for the riches that last forever.”
(v. 32) These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.
- Worrying about material things is what unbelievers are consumed with. Jesus wants us to be concerned with eternal things, things that will not perish. Matthew 6:20 says, “Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal.” When we worry about the things of this earth, we are trusting in things that will pass away. When we trust in God, he has an eternal reward waiting for us in Heaven.
(v. 33) Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.
- What does it mean to seek the Kingdom of God? It means that we are to put Jesus first in every single thing in our lives. From our relationships, job, finances, children, the plans and decisions we make. Put God at the top! He wants to take control of every single aspect of your life. He wants to be Jehovah Jireh – the Lord who provides. When we concentrate on God and his Kingdom, the worry in our lives vanishes. It was Jesus’ conviction that worry is banished when God becomes the dominating power of our lives. – William Barclay
(v. 34) “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.”
- So how can we defeat worry? By seeking God first, trusting him completely, and living one day at a time. We can plan for tomorrow, but when we worry about tomorrow, that is time wasted. Worrying about tomorrow robs us of our joy and it puts a heavy burden on our shoulders. Jesus did not intend for us to carry that burden. He wants to take that burden from us. Matthew 11:28 says, “Come to me all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” If you are worrying about tomorrow or the future, put it on the shoulders of our Lord and Savior that took the burden of sin from us. If he can carry our sin and our shame, he can carry our worries and cares for tomorrow. Here is a great prescription for worry from Corrie Ten Boom, “Look around and be distressed, Look inside and be depressed, Look at Jesus and be at rest.” Amen.