Monday, September 26, 2011
Consider the Lilies
Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. Matthew 6:25-34
These are anxious times for all of us. Across our country and across our world the economic crisis has folks over a barrel. Many millions are out of work, and those who were without before this crisis are destitute and at wits end. Others suffer from terrible physical pain, and suffer day in and day out, wondering when they will find relief. I have a myelogram scheduled for this week and it is hard not to be anxious about that test, as it can be miserable and painful. And then there is probably surgery in my future. There is a great deal to be anxious about from the big picture to the real traumas in our lives.
Jesus has people from all walks of life gathered around him. And they are people of "all sorts and conditions". Looking at the faces in the crowds, he must have seen many lined with worry, people aching for themselves and their children, folks torn up by the true lack in their lives. He told them to not worry, rather to know that God was caring for their needs, great and small. He speaks to all of us today, in whatever circumstances and crisis we face. God is clothing the lily, which is temporary, and deeply caring for us, who are eternal.
Today, I ask God to help me seek first God's realm, the service of others, and living love, and trust that my worries are taken care of. May we trust that what we lack God is adding to our lives, if we are but willing to share what we have been given for the healing and restoration of the world.