We live in a world fraught with worry. Some definitions for worry are as follows: “to feel anxious about something unpleasant that may have happened or may happen. A troubled state of mind resulting from concern about current or potential difficulties; a state of troubled anxiety; nervous apprehension about a future event or a general fear of possible misfortune; nonspecific chronic anxiety about the human condition or the state of the world.” The most difficult form of worry is known as Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder or OCD. Worry, unease, anxiety, angst and stress rarely, if ever, lead to a productive solution.
In Matthew 6:25 Jesus teaches about worry. “So I tell you, don’t worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food, drink and clothes. Doesn’t life consist of more than food and clothing?” Jesus tells us not to worry because worry has a bad effect on our lives. Worry damages our health, it hinders us from being productive members of society, it has a negative effect on the way we treat other people and worry reduces our ability to place our trust in God. In Matthew 6: 26, Jesus continues, “Look at the birds. They don’t need to plant or harvest or put food in barns because your heavenly Father feeds them. And you are far more valuable to Him than they are. Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? Of course not.” What kind of response can you actually give to such questions as, “Is not life more important than food? “Is not the body more important than clothes?” The reality is that the Lord gave you your life and your body. Why would He give you life and a body and not provide you with nourishment and clothing? You are far more valuable to God than the birds of the air. If he feeds and cares for the birds, why would you ever think that He would not do the same for you?
Are you experiencing health problems due to worry? Do you find yourself immobilized and unable to act? Do you worry about things that have not even taken place? God endeavors to lighten the burden of everyday concerns off the shoulders of His children. In Matthew 6: 28-30, Jesus says, “And why worry about your clothes? Look at the lilies 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 flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, won’t He more surely care for you? You have so little faith!” Why be concerned about clothes? The Word says that not even Solomon, in all his splendor, was dressed as fine as the lilies of the field. God is Creator of all the glorious earthly splendor and much of it lasts but for a short time. Realize that God’s desire is to clothe and care for His children. Meditate on Jesus’ admonitions. “So don’t worry about having enough food or drink or clothing. Why be like the pagans who are so deeply concerned about these things? Your heavenly Father already knows all your needs, and He will give you all you need from day to day if you live for Him and make the Kingdom of God your primary concern” (Matthew 6: 31-33). Jesus tells us to stop worrying about what we will eat, drink and wear. Unbelievers worry about these things. The Lord desires His children to take the attention off themselves and put their faith and trust in Him. That is whey He reminds us to look at the birds, look at the lilies. God does not want you to be burdened with anxiety. Worrying and being anxious is a sin, as it demonstrates a lack of faith in God and His ability to care for you. God knows your every need, even before you do. All you are asked to do is to seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and everything you need, will be given to you.
.Christians are to put God first in their lives above everything else. They are to fill their minds with God’s desires, to study God’s character and pattern their lives after Him. True Christians willingly serve and obey God in every area of their lives. Christians are not to worry; rather, they are to exercise genuine concern which moves them to action. What things in life are really important to you? It is possible for people, goals, desires and busyness to compete with God for time and attention. Don’t allow other things in life to bump God out of first place. Instead, actively choose to give God first place in every area of your life. This will build your faith in God and you will have no reason to worry and be anxious.
“So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today” (Matthew 6:34). Worrying will not add a single hour to your life. If anything it will cut your life short. It is good to spend time planning for tomorrow; however, worrying about tomorrow is a total waste of time. Plan ahead and give considerable thought regarding your goals, your schedule and plans of action while at the same time trusting in God’s guidance. Smart planning helps to alleviate worry. Worriers, on the other hand, are consumed by fear and find it difficult to trust God. They allow their plans to interfere with their relationship with God. Make sure not to let your worries about tomorrow affect your relationship with God today.
If you desire to walk in victory it is imperative that you not allow your heart to be burdened with the cares of this life. In order to be spiritually healthy you must remove all care and anxiety from your life. Do not lack faith in God when it comes to His provision for you. In His Word, He has full assured you that He knows your every need and as you seek first the kingdom and His righteousness, He has beautifully promised to fulfill your needs.
Victorious Living Lesson: Victorious living takes place when believers take the attention off of themselves and put their faith and trust in God.
Prayer: Dear Lord, increase my faith and give me the wisdom to understand and know with certainty that as I seek first the kingdom and Your righteousness, that you will take care of my every need. Forgive me for the times that I have lacked faith and worried about my needs. I will strive to remove all care and anxiety from my life. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
Commentary: Life Application Study Bible