MATTHEW 6:31_saying, what shall ye eat or, what shall ye drink, or wherewithal shall ye be clothed?
You can worry yourself sick – literally. Worry takes such a toll on the soul, the body can become weary, weak, and sick. The heart takes the worst beating from worry. The body was not designed to stand up under constant worry. The soul (mind, will, emotions) was not designed to stand up under constant worry. The spirit was not designed to worry at all! The spirit was designed to praise!
You are designed in God’s image to know and worship Him. You are designed to joy in the Lord. Worry can’t stand up against joy.
Don’t confuse worry with times of struggle and trial that cause suffering. If you don’t believe God has the power and the mercy to bring you through … then you are worrying. If you are suffering during a trial, but believe God will bring you through, you are not worrying. If you believe God will cause some good to come from your pain, you are not worrying. You are hurting.
Romans 8:35,37 )KJV), “35Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.”
Lord of Love, Help me know there is nothing that can overpower Your love. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ’s love conquers—Whatever comes against me!
MATTHEW 6:28_And why take ye thought for raiment?
Jesus re-visits the clothes issue. There is something else Jesus re-visits. Do you see it? Do you see the word thought?
The tenth commandment is Thou shalt not covet. Covet is akin to lust. Thought patterns are captured. A strong desire that doesn’t let go until it is satisfied. If the truth be told, covetousness can’t be satisfied.
Once lust, or covetousness, obtains its desire – it wants more. That’s the very nature of covetousness – an insatiable desire. Luke 12:15 (KJV), “And he [Jesus] said unto them, ‘Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.’’’ There is a difference in coveting the latest brand name and just needing clothes.
Covet is also akin to envy. Envy dwells on what someone else possesses. The longer the dwell, the deeper envy works its way into the heart. Once there, envy causes conflict. Not because you’ve been wronged, but because the one you envy dresses like you want to – but can’t.
Galatians 5:26 (KJV), “Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.”
Don’t let worry thought patterns fill you with strife over clothes.
Lord Jesus, Help me trust You to provide for me what is best at this time. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ knows all my needs—He will provide
MATTHEW 6:27_Which of you by taking thought…
Jesus lets you know where worry, fret, and stress begin – your thoughts.
You have a problem. Your brain creates a scenario of possibilities. What if this happens? Or even worse, what if that happens? And what if the very thing I want the most doesn’t happen at all? Your thoughts rehearse the scenario over and over imagining an abundance of possibilities, none of which are currently reality – and may never become so.
Taking thought allows the brain to fill the heart with stress. Proverbs 4:23 (KJV), “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.” God wants your heart to issue life, not stress which brings an abundance of health problems. If envy consumes your thoughts … Proverbs 14:30 (KJV), “A sound heart is the life of the flesh: but envy the rottenness of the bones.”
God doesn’t want thought patterns to damage your heart, which in turn damage health. God wants things like John 14:1 (KJV) to rule thoughts, “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me [Jesus].”
Those what ifs trouble your heart. God wants hearts free to not only believe in Him, but on Him.
God of My Heart, Help me not allow my thoughts to trouble my heart. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ does not want my heart troubled—He helps me!
MATTHEW 6:25_Therefore I say unto you, take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink…
That’s a rather strange way for Jesus to begin a new teaching. If you don’t take thought for your life, who will? Maybe parents. If you don’t have earthly parents, surely by now you are convinced your Heavenly Father takes thought of you. You are never out of His mind or heart.
Psalm 139:1-3 (KJV),“O lord, Thou hast searched me, and known me. 2 Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off. 3 Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.”
You are always on God’s mind. He knows everything that happens in your life. There’s more to this Psalm, “17 How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them! 18 If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.” God constantly takes thought of your life.
This is not about whether you eat your spinach, or drink your kefir. This is about worry. And being released from it.
Think that’s easier said than done?
Good Shepherd, Thank You for thinking of my needs every day. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ keeps me in His thoughts—He knows my needs!
MATTHEW 5:44_But I say unto you, love your enemies…
As we have seen over and again, there is an order in which Jesus presents His teachings. If we can get our minds wrapped around the cheek turning, cloak giving, second mile going, and giving away – learning how to love our enemies will come much easier.
The first four guidelines lead us into the self-sacrificing mode. The giving more than receiving mode. The putting others before ourselves mode.
Now we are ready to see how powerful love really can be. After all, if we can love our enemies – we can love anybody!
Why do we even want to love our enemy? Because Jesus said to.
Why did He say to? Because Jesus desires all people to be loved.
We are called to be salt and light to everyone – especially the unloved. There is a reason Jesus called disciples in the first place – to teach them how to live free. They teach and make more disciples. Disciples share the truth with the world through the Bible. Jesus chooses to share His love through disciples.
Get salty! Light up!
Lord of All, I want to be Your disciple through whom You love people. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ chooses disciples—I want to be one!