And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. Luke 12:29-30
This post is a response to my friend who was having financial problem. Through email she tells how hard she trying to overcome her financial problem. She asked me not for money but just asked me to pray and give her a bit encouragement thought so that she could endure to deal with her problem.
In the very tough situation today, so many people easily sigh about their problem. How hard they trying to meet so many needs even just their daily needs. Living cost getting higher, got pressure and stress in their jobs, financial responsibility that must be met, and so many other problems that should to face. All of it would cause worry and fear.
It is written in Luke 12:24: Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!
This verse is comforting us. We are much more valuable than the birds. If God feed the birds we supposed do not need to worry. But just be realistic for a moment. We are not like birds that do not have any needs like us as humans. Even birds do not sow or reap, do not have storeroom or barn. We need so many things. We need gasoline for our cars, gas for the kitchen, life and health insurance, tuition for the kids, maybe we also need to pay the rent, and a bit extra budget just in case we got unexpected needs. So how can we not worry? Well, let’s take a look to the next verse:
Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest? Luke 12:25-26
My dear readers, this is the point that we have. Worrying does lead us to nowhere. Thus, what can we do? It is a good question! What else can we do? Remember this; God has given us a lot of options. We can do anything. We can do to help solve our difficult situation except worry! Once again we are not like birds. God gave us incredible mind to us and we can use it to explore and find out any solution and possibilities to overcome our problems. That is the more practical thing we should be doing. Ok, another question arises. What if we couldn’t think and find of any solution? Well then, if we can’t think and find of any? Once again, worry isn’t a part of the solution. The very best way are: keep trusting God, Keep faith in God, and Resting in God’s wisdom and providence. And this is the point that God wanted us to do. Let us try to do everything as best we are and then submit the rest to God. A higher power than we have definitely can overcome everything that we can’t.
It seems so simple and easy. Then we have other worries and ask: How come? We have only a month’s budget and still have other needs. What shall we do? My lovely friends, indeed, God really understands our fear and worry and He knows that many times we mistake those fears and worry for a real need. A fear and worry is something that may not happen. A need is something we have to address at the very moment where we are. So if we have got a budget for a month groceries, that means God has given us the means to survive today and for the rest of the month as well. What’s bothering us is not be met, but future need, a fear that may or may not come into reality.
I was remembering about the story of Elijah in 1 King 17:1-9.
Since there was to be no rain for the next few years, God provided for Elijah’s needs by pointing him towards the kerith brook and when the brook dried up, God instructed him to go to Zarephath, where his needs shall continue to be provided for. There is one interesting thing here. Please pay attention to dried brook. God never said to Elijah that someday the brook will dry up and then God will say to Elijah that He will send him to a widow who will feed him. But God provide another way to survive after the brook dried up. (1 King 17:7-8)
This is very different from way we want to be provided for. We have been used to having a lot of surplus in our hands, or some kind of insurance that will see us through in case some unexpected things happen. If we don’t have a big allowance like that, we become fearful because we don’t know where we are going to find the things to address our needs. I think this isn’t wrong to think logically. Indeed God has given us a mind to plan wisely and to take care of our finances. The wrong thing is when we limit ourselves to our plans and when our plans don’t work well, we panic! We lose heart and we forget from where all good things really come from. From God!
We often rely on our confidence and peace on the material things that can get stolen away from us. The right way is it should be anchored in God alone. That is God point in wanting us to trust Him, to save us from unnecessary worries that give us so much stress and even affects our health. In the next story of Elijah, God once again proved His providence. When Elijah asked for meal to the widow, she only had enough for one last meal! She said: “I don’t have any bread—only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it—and die.” (1 Kings 17:12) The widow thought she and her son were already going to starve to death! Why? All that she had was only enough for one last meal. But even that doesn’t say that they were not being provided for. And after using everything she had, it was time for God’s providence to show itself: She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah. (1 Kings 17:15-16)
God provides just in time. He is never late even a second. And He provides for all our needs, not just for food, for our Father knows everything our lack. One real concern God is also well aware of is our concern for our health. He knows how much money we need in case any of our loved ones get sick. He knows how great our fear is, especially when we don’t have enough saving or insurance for it. In the story of Elijah and the widow, one of our most dreadful fears happened, when loved ones get sick and we have no money or any kind of means to help them in their sickness. But What God did? When in tears Elijah asked to God to save that child, The Lord heard Elijah’s cry, and the boy’s life returned to him, and he lived. Elijah picked up the child and carried him down from the room into the house. He gave him to his mother and said, “Look, your son is alive!” (1King 17:22-23)
My dear readers, this post will end with contemplation. Anxiety and frightened just make us feel the problems is more severe than the actual reality. So, what for we are afraid and worried if it would only burden ourselves. The important thing that should we do are, point our hearts and minds on God, not on the problems. Believe in God, not on ourselves. Put “sense of secure” on God, not on treasures. Do the best which to be our part, let God doing His part and then God alone who will make it perfect. He is never too late. With faith in God, we must believe that God will meet all our needs just in time. May not be excessively but sufficient. Amen.
Karina and Sella Irene, Wisdom for the Journey
Photo credit: Google Images
This post is collaboration between me and my sister in Christ from Indonesia, Sella Irene. And special for this post she wrote a beautiful poem titled “The Meshes of Worries” To read her poem please click here.