As you read this devotional, I pray that you have already asked the Lord to show Himself in your life today. What a thrill to know we can spend each day meditating upon God and His Word!
I want to share a few thoughts from Matthew 6:25-34. This passage is really a connection to the previous study of verses 19-24. The consistent topic is having a single mind focused on God and Biblical things. The difference is that in the previous passage, it was talking about striving to build up earthly treasures ("For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.") and in this passage, it is talking about worrying about earthly things. Whether I am trying to build up material things, or I am worrying about material things, neither is good. Satan doesn't care which of the two I struggle with as long as it keeps my mind off of God.
As I look into these last verses of chapter 6, I see the phrase "take no thought" mentioned three times. This passage is addressing worry. Take no thought means to not worry about or be anxious for. Literally, the thought of "don't let something divide you." Christ encourages us to be of a singular focus in the previous verses and He now warns against the danger of being burdened by temporal things.
There are some simple applications here. First, do not worry in your heart about material things. Many families have great needs; some of those needs may involve financial resources that are limited. It's easy to get stressed or anxious over not being able to do certain things, but here Christ is saying to not worry about those things. Seek ye first His kingdom - and that is what I must do. God will supply my family's needs and I can trust Him for it. Being anxious for something is the opposite of trusting Him.
Second, there can also be the burden of worrying about things out of my control, like frustrating or discouraging situations. This is different than worrying about material things. It can be easy to think about those things when I should be following Christ's instructions to take no thought for those things. I want to serve others as Christ did, but when I look around me instead of at Christ, I fail to do what I know is right. I should never allow it to distract me from God and the work He has for me.
Taking no thought doesn't mean laziness or "living by faith and whatever happens, will happen." No, there is effort to be made. The simple illustration in this passage is the birds of the air. They don't just sit on top of a tree and wait for food to appear. God promises to provide their food, but they must go get it. I must recognize that I can't just sit around and wait for God to "show up." In every way, He has already "shown up." I must make the effort to grow in my spiritual walk to learn of His provision. It is not wrong for me to prepare and work towards some goals financially or materially. It's when those become my focus or cause me to worry that I lose a singular focus on God. All of this is really about trust in God. To further understand it, I must recognize a couple of things:
- Where did this life come from? Life comes from God. Nothing I have, or enjoy, or even air to breathe, comes from any source other than God Almighty. If life comes from Him, and Him alone, and He has chosen it as a gift to me, then He will sustain it. He has created it for His glory, so I don't need to worry.
- If God is the giver of life, then isn't the life itself of greater value than the needs in that life? Isn't our life worth more to God than meat, or raiment, or any other need? Of course it is! Christ died for me. If God has put this much into my life, shouldn't I focus on what I should be for Him? The things around my life, or in my life, aren't what's important. It's my life submitted and surrendered to God that's important.
God's purposes for me are certain and always sure. I can trust Him and trust is the opposite of worry. I pray that today you will take no thought for temporal things, but instead "... seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you." Have a blessed day!
Written by Kenn Winn