Hudson pastor column: Free as a bird
Mark Twain said, "I'm an old man and I've known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened."
In Matthew 6:25, Jesus talks about worry. What does He say? "Don't worry! Don't worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will put on.
In verse 34, Jesus says, "Don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own troubles." Jesus is basically saying, "You can handle the weight of today's burdens, but the added weight of worrying about tomorrow will cause you to tip over."
Don't spend your time trying to have a trouble-free life. Your joy and peace and contentment are not based on what people think of you or how much money or stuff you have. If people can give you peace, then people can take it away. If social status or money can give you peace, then that same stuff can take it away. Your peace, joy and contentment have to come from God. What we need to learn is to have peace in the storm, peace in the struggle, knowing that He is in the midst of it. He didn't say He would never let us struggle or go through some stuff, but He did say He would be right there in the midst of whatever it is we are facing.
There is a principle in Scripture that says we need to go to God every day for what we need. In the Lord's Prayer, Jesus taught this principal—"Give us this day our daily bread." He didn't say give us this day our monthly bread! God provided manna in the wilderness for the children of Israel on a daily basis. They tried to store it up and it went bad. He wants us to be dependent on Him daily and come to Him daily. I call it "The One Day Principle."
God will give you grace for what you need today—for the struggles and troubles of today. You need to fill your tank daily—you have to eat your food daily. You can't withdraw grace for next week's stuff now—you must get it fresh—daily! "Worry doesn't rob tomorrow of its sorrow, it robs today of its strength." —Corrie ten Boom
What's the answer for worry? Again, in Matthew 6, Jesus says, "Look at the birds ... consider the lilies."
So what do birds do?
• Birds take advantage of opportunities that come their way.
• They are busy—they're out looking for the blessing, not whining and complaining about what they don't have. (Do something, help someone out, volunteer.)
• Birds go low—they grab worms and bugs. (Be humble.)
• Birds soar high—they get a better view, they change their perspective, they get refreshed. (Prayer and worship and God's word do the same for us.)
• Birds sing. (It's hard to worry and stay in a funk when you are singing praises to God.)
What do lilies or flowers do?
• They put down roots. (We need roots—a foundation in Christ and established in God's Word.)
• They soak up the sun and the rain. (We need to spend time in His presence in prayer and worship—just spending time with Him!)
Birds and lilies just do what they were made to do. What were we made to do? We were designed to have fellowship with the Creator. That happens when we experience a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. When we understand God's love for us we can be confident that He will take care of us. The Scripture says, "Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you." (I Peter 5:7) and "If God is for me, who can be against me?" (Romans 8:31) Jesus said, "If the Son sets you free, you are free indeed!" (John 8:36)
If He has cancelled my past and He holds my future, then I am free! Free from worry, free from anxiety, free from fear! Free as a bird!