I recently spent some time along the coast of North and South Carolina. My wife, Sandra, and I spent some time at Myrtle Beach with family and then went to Morehead City to visit some old friends. Several times during our trip I took the opportunity to walk on the beach. I love to walk along the shore and just take in the vastness and beauty of the ocean. As I walked I saw the seagulls flying effortlessly above me, sailing on the ocean breeze. They just seemed to catch the wind and let it take them wherever it pleased. I watched these birds flying back and forth over the sand and waves without a care in the world. They are not worried about all the bad news in the world today. They are not stressed about the government, the economy, immigration, foreign policy, their job security or their bank balance. Yet, somehow they manage to make it through each day pretty well. They spend some time looking for food, they play a little, they rest a little and it all seems to work out fine. What a life!
I am reminded of just how much God loves and cares for his creatures, including me and you! Jesus used this very point to teach his disciples about the futility of a fretful life and worrying about this and that. He encourages us to trust God and God’s loving care for all his creation.
‘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?” (Matthew 6: 25-31)
It is much easier said than done. I understand that. There seems a lot to worry about these days. But the teaching of Jesus is still as vital and meaningful for us as it was for those who stood and listened to him speak. Every generation has its own challenges and fears. We do the best we can. We may not always have what we want and life may not always be easy, but God knows what we need and so we trust that he can and will provide. Throughout our lives there will be times of prosperity and times of want. There will be times of joy and times of sorrow. There will be times when we may feel like God is right beside us and other times when God seems a million miles away. But the God we serve is still God of all creation and he is the same today, yesterday and forever. He has promised never to leave us or forsake us and will give us what we need at the right time. Trust in the Lord for each day, ‘And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus’. (Philippians 4:19)32