How many of you would confess, I worry about lots of things? You would say that fear, worry, or anxiety mark your life to one degree or another? Those of us who worry have our own style of worrying. Some of us worry about decisions to be made. Some of us worry about decisions we just made. Some of us worry about the how-tos of life. How to feed and clothe and how to buy and pay. And, some of us worry about everything — decision making and the how–tos of life.
The sad thing about worry is that it often saddles you with feelings of dread and darkness that literally sap the life out of you. Worry makes you dysfunctional and often difficult to live with. So what do we do?
Do we just say, “well that’s the way I am and everyone else has to deal with my worry dominated habits of life?” Dare we ask, what did Jesus have to say about worry and how we should fight it? In fact, He along with the other Spirit directed writers of both Testaments had much to say about worry.
In Luke 12 and the parallel Matthew 6 passage, Christ exhorts us to fight worry by becoming rich toward God (12:21, 34). How do we do this? How does a worrier let go of a situation or a circumstance that dominates his/her attention? How does a worrier fight the pain and the darkness of anxiety to enjoy the peace found in Christ?
I would invite you to open your eyes and your heart to embrace the reminders and exhortations of Christ in Luke 12 that are intended to make us rich toward God.
The first investment in a God-enriched life is understanding who God is. According to 12:4-5 He is the one who determines our eternal destiny, so don’t worry about who can kill our body. According to 12:12 we are reminded that the Holy Spirit will teach us what to say when questioned by the authorities for our faith, so don’t worry about it.
We will be rich toward God when we see Him as all-knowing. Our all-knowing God does not forget the sparrows when they are sold nor does He lose track of your hair count.
We will be rich toward God when we understand that our all-knowing God has the power and the resources to care for everything He knows about in His creation. He feeds the ravens and He dresses the fields in such a way that the flamboyant Solomon looks shabby.
The sweetness of this minutia is that our all-knowing God values us more than birds and hair strands (12:7, 24). The wallop/sting of this minutia is our self-absorption with what we will eat and what we will wear likens us to the pagans who run after such things. This chase does not make us rich toward God.
Can you see that life is ultimately more than . . . and that we are more valuable than . . .? If we can then we will fight worry and we will be rich toward God. Those who are rich toward God are pursuing the eternal things that He is building; things like the kingdom, treasure in heaven, and His return.
Fight worry with the character and promises of God. My God is my sovereign over life and death. My Lord is with me. My Lord values me/us more than any other thing in creation. My God will care for all my/our needs. My God knows exactly what I/we need. My Lord is building His Kingdom. May God help us to fight worry by becoming rich toward God.