Do Not Worry
25 ‘Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink,* or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?26Look 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?27And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life?*28And why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin,29yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these.30But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith?31Therefore do not worry, saying, “What will we eat?” or “What will we drink?” or “What will we wear?”32For it is the Gentiles who strive for all these things; and indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.33But strive first for the kingdom of God* and his* righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
I have always been the nervous, anxious type. As an educator, I am trained to have a plan, and a back-up plan, and then a third option. I suppose there is much to be said for that precision, that methodical mindset. This reading from Matthew reminds me that we are not meant to do everything alone. We are to trust in God’s desire to provide for us. Certainly, that does not excuse us from responsibility. What it does mean for me is to let go in those moments when I am wound so tightly around myself that I can’t think straight. Those are the moments when I am to remember that worry will not add a single hour to my life. The birds in the air neither sow nor reap, yet they are fed splendidly. The lilies neither toil nor spin, yet they are clothed more brilliantly than Solomon in all his Splendor. And we know from Scripture that Solomon’s wardrobe was unmatchable. We are reminded in this passage that God knows we need clothing and food and such. The point is that God delights in providing for us in more ways than we could imagine.
On this Thanksgiving, I strive to remind to let go of all the worry and anxiety. When I am filled with that stress, there is no room for gratitude. There is no room for Thanksgiving. The great irony is that worrying about will cause one to miss the great Thanksgiving gathering and dinner that is prepared on this day and always. When I get to nervous and anxious, there is no room for God to provide what I need. And I miss out spiritually and emotionally on the Thanksgiving gatherings.