A few years ago I was watching a Godwit wade through the surf happily feasting on aquatic worms as the sun rose on Amelia Island. As I watched the silhouette of the bird, I was reminded of what Jesus said in Matthew 6:25-27…
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”
Do you think that the Godwit worries about whether or not the ocean will be there when he wakes up in the morning? Do you think he tries to save a surplus of aquatic worms in case there are no more in the sand the next time he is hungry? No, every morning he goes down to the water’s edge and is met with a feast just like he did every day before.
Fear and worry are big obstacles. They consume a great deal of our energy. We all bend from the wind of fear in our lives. We fear not having enough, not being enough, or losing what we have worked so hard to acquire. There is a spirit of fear that covers humanity like a wet blanket. News outlets use fear to get people to tune into their programing. Financial institutions use fear to lure customers to buy their products, churches use fear to get people to pray the prayer, pharmaceutical companies use fear to get people to use their latest drugs, parents use fear to get their kids to behave. Let’s face it, fear is everywhere and it controls most everyone.
So what are we supposed to do about fear? We know from experience that all of the worrying and attempts to control our circumstances is not working. In all truth, our hearts were not made to shoulder all of the scary things that are happening in our lives and around the world. This is one solid reason for why there are so many stress related illnesses today. If we are willing to look, we can find the answers we need in the Scriptures. Let’s look at how Jesus finishes his thought about worrying…
“People who don’t know God and the way He works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all of your everyday human concerns will be met. Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes”. Matthew 6:32-34
What would happen if you were to steep, or soak in, or saturate yourself, in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions…to take on His essence? I’m not talking about making a list of more things to do. I’m talking about slowing down. I’m talking about choosing to seek Him and rest in Him. If we truly trust in God and in his promises, we can approach each day with confidence. We can stand firm against fear…not getting worked up about what may happen, but believing that God will help us deal with whatever may come our way.
The world’s sin is that it refuses to believe in me. Jesus… John 16:9