June 27, 2024 Devotional

[Jesus taught his disciples, saying:] “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear.
Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?” —Matthew 6:25

Worry is certainly a major topic of conversation these days. No one is completely immune to worry or doubt or anxiety. We live in an anxious time and we are anxious people. And just because we are followers of Jesus doesn’t mean that there aren’t times when the worries of life tend to rob us of our joy. In our verse for today, Jesus made it very clear to the disciples that they needed to get perspective on the important and less important things of life, so that they would not miss the joy He has for them.

I’m reminded of the great story in the bible of the night that the disciples took Jesus out into a boat, with other boats too, in order to make it to the other side of the lake. Turns out, that night was rocked by a terrible storm and the boats were ready to be swamped and capsize. I have been in a boat or two in that circumstance and, I will fully confirm, that it’s very nerve-wracking! Yet, at least a few of the disciples were professional fisherman, and they had certainly seen storms like this. This particular storm must have been pretty bad. The disciples called to the back of the boat and asked Jesus – who was sleeping – if he even cared that they were perishing in the storm. Jesus, with some degree of disappointment, calmed the storm and asked the disciples why they had such little faith. Yet, it was in that moment that the disciples stopped worrying and started wondering, “Who then is this…?” (Mark 4)

There really is a pathway out of worry, doubt, fear, and anxiety, even (or especially) in our culture that is rampant with strife, storms, and sensationalism. The right answer, of course, is Jesus. Yet, we must take a good, long look at the worry and fear in our lives, in order to place ourselves in the boat with Jesus (perspective). Through the power of His Holy Spirit, and in order for us to truly see Jesus’ actions and hear his words, we must listen when He says, “I care so much I was willing to die for you. And, because I am the Son of God, my death and resurrection have the full power to forgive sin, heal brokenness, provide for every need, and call you out from doubt and fear to hope and a future.”

Friends, you are loved by God so deeply that even the clothes you wear and the food you eat become His concern far more than yours. Those aren’t things for you and me to worry about. Spend time today, and this week, practicing perspective so that you’ll get a bigger picture of the reasons Jesus died for you. Do your clothes you wear and the food you eat matter? Does your sleep or work or playtime matter? Yes, they do. But, remember that they aren’t places for worry because your life is in His hands. Your life, in Jesus’ hands and moving in His will, and your body being used by God to heal and witness to Jesus’ love and saving power, are far greater than the temporal things of this life. Let the JOY of the Lord flood you right now as you allow the Spirit to move you to give thanks to Him for His abundance in your life.