August 25, 2017

Matthew 6:33 (NLT) — 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

Jesus spoke these words to keep us from indulging in the sin of worry.

Matthew 6:31–32 (NLT) — 31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.

Jesus is saying that worry is what unbelievers do. Believers believe in Jesus. What a terrible testimony to the unbelievers that live around us if they see us caught up in a state of worry. We are saying to them that our God cannot be trusted! We are saying the same thing to our children. The enemy loves to get us into a state of worry and anxiety because he knows it nullifies are testimony for Jesus.

You may ask why we should pray if our heavenly Father already knows what we need. I found the following answer pretty satisfying:

Why does God tell us to pray for the things he has promised to do anyway? For instance, he tells us to pray that his name will be hallowed and his kingdom come, things he has assured us he will bring to pass, anyway. After all, every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess one day that Jesus Christ is Lord (Phil. 2:10–11). French philosopher and mathematician Blaise Pascal suggests that God does it to give us the dignity of causality.

When my children were young, they would “help” me mow the lawn. The grass was too thick and the mower too heavy for them to push. So I stood over them, hands on the mower handle with theirs, my body bent slightly forward, and pushed as they “pushed” it through the grass. I could have done the job better and more easily alone, but I wanted the pleasure of their company. I also wanted them to have something to do that mattered, to have the dignity of causality. I think God commands us to pray for much the same reasons.

So we must pray, for prayer actually gets God’s work done. We must also pray because prayer allows God to work on us.

Patterson, B., & Goetz, D. L. (1999). Deepening your conversation with God (Vol. 7, p. 27). Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House Publishers.

So now we come back to our memory verse:

Matthew 6:33 (NLT) — 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

Jesus is saying that worry causes you to forget why you are here. We are here to find out the will of God and then live it out. We are here to put Jesus first and take his message of grace to an unbelieving world. Because the Father knows what I need and that he will give me all that I need, I am now free to speak the message of grace to unbelievers. They need to know that because of Christmas and the Cross their sins have been forgiven, they have been adopted into the family of God, and they have a place at his table of provision. All they need to do is believe and receive. However if we are living in a state of worry we will never get this out. Don’t let worry sidetrack you.

Corrie Ten Boom, “Worry doesn’t empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.”

If God’s will is put first in our lives than he will see to it that we never lack the necessities of life.

Be Inspired Hilltop!