“So don’t worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.” Matthew 6:31-32 (CSB – emphasis mine)
Not only are Jesus’ followers invited to call on God as their heavenly Father in prayer, they are invited to escape the worry and anxiety that plagues the rest of the world. Jesus makes no guarantee that life will be simple and free of pain nor does he say we will get what we want (or think we want). The guarantee is that our Heavenly Father knows what we need, period. In his way and in his time, he will provide for us. Which begs the question, why do we worry? After all, what loving father – especially a perfect one – doesn’t have the best in mind for his children?
“When you enter the land of Canaan that I am giving you as a possession, and I place a mildew contamination in a house in the land you possess,” – Leviticus 14:34 (CSB – emphasis mine)
Mildew is a part of nature. Like all aspects of the universe, it is squarely under the control of the Creator. It cannot exist apart from the one who upholds the universe by the power of his word. Jesus said that God cares for both the birds and the flowers and therefore we need not worry. If God takes care of them how much more will he take care of us! Worry consumes us and yet nothing – not the birds, the flowers, or even mildew – is outside the control of our sovereign God. How different our lives would be if we remembered this truth.
Confession time: I’m a worrier. No one taught me how to do it. I don’t even remember when it started. I guess something just clicked one day and I started to worry. The truth about worry is that it’s a symptom of something deeper. It’s about control. I like to feel as if I have it and when I don’t, it leads to worry.
I know intellectually that worry is pointless. The only fruit of worry is fear, anxiety, and more worry. It’s a counterproductive cycle. But at times my desire to feel in control of my circumstances drives me to live under the dark clouds of worry. In those moments I fail to recognize that there is another option. Instead of worrying about life’s changing circumstances, I’ve been invited to place my trust in the unchanging care of my Heavenly Father.