JANUARY 27, 2017
“Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” Matthew 6:27 (NIV)
When it comes to worrying, I could win an Olympic prize. Not surprising, since I come from a long line of expert worriers.
My grandparents were champions. During my childhood, they showed up at every family gathering two hours early to avoid being late. Then by 2:30 in the afternoon, my Papa would start fretting about how they needed to get home before dark. They’d leave at 3 p.m., so they could go check on their dog and make sure their house wasn’t on fire.
One of my favorite family memories comes from a car trip I took with my grandparents back in the days when the top speed limit was 55 mph. Grandma was blowing down the highway at 50 when a traffic police appeared. Papa leaned over to warn her, “See that cop, Ma? You better slow down.” He was scared to death they’d get a speeding ticket.
Thirty years later, it’s easy for me to laugh at my grandparent’s apprehensions, but maybe my worries look equally foolish to God. When I consider my fears in the light of my all-powerful, heavenly Father, they look small and unnecessary.
Jesus knew all about our inclination to worry when He asked, “Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” (Matthew 6:27).
Maybe worrying is in my genes, but I nurture it every time I allow it to take root in my thoughts. I’ve wasted time and energy letting my mind get worked up over situations my heavenly Father had under His control.
Scripture reminds me I have a loving Father who cares even for birds: “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?” (Matthew 6:26, NIV). When I call to mind that God feeds even sparrows, I’m reassured. I remember my heavenly Father sees me, loves me and cares for my needs.
What about you, friend? You might have some pressing uncertainties in your life. Trouble at work may be wearing you down. Concern for your kids can keep you up at night. Bills might look big at the end of the month, and a simple visit to the doctor can turn your life upside down.
Let’s flex our faith muscles today.
Rather than waste time and energy on worry, let’s use it to build our faith. Why replay fears in our minds when we can choose to remember God’s truth instead? What if we look to His Word to find a specific Scripture verse that addresses our concerns?
We can flip fear with the Word of God. Worrying won’t change our situation, but God’s Word can. When anxious thoughts come, let’s call to mind God’s promises and meditate on His faithfulness. Let’s turn our worries into prayers as we proclaim God’s powerful Word over ourselves and the people we love.
After all, our heavenly Father calls each star by name, and He sees each sparrow when it falls. We can trust Him to take care of us.
Lord, I know You love and care for me and the people in my life. Help me learn to trust You. Give me grace to believe that You will work for good in every situation. Help me to lay worry aside and flex my faith muscles instead. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
1 Peter 5:7, “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” (NLT)
Are you tired of staring at a blank page? Today’s devotion author, Betsy de Cruz, is a member of COMPEL Training, a writing membership community equipping those who want to hone their craft. Registration is only open for 48 hours beginning next Monday and ending Tuesday, January 31 at midnight.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Take a few minutes to identify your present concerns. Lift in prayer to God each person or situation that comes to mind. Ask Him to do His perfect work. Trust that He will.
Can you think of a Scripture verse that addresses a specific fear you have? Write it on a notecard. Keep it close, and meditate on it whenever fear or worry rise up in your heart.
© 2017 by Betsy de Cruz. All rights reserved.
Originally published Friday, 27 January 2017.