Saturday, August 4, 2007

The Cure for Worry

Matthew 6:33 But seek first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.

The context in which this verse is given is that of worry. Jesus is telling us that we are not to worry about what we will eat, what we will drink, what we will wear. He then goes on to say that worrying and seeking after these things is what the idolaters who don't know God do. God knows that we need these things, and He will take care of us; He takes care of the birds who do not work or save. If He feeds them, Jesus asks, won't He also take care of You? Are you not more important than they are?

But please note that the verse does not say that we are not to stop striving and working for everything because God will provide; it says that our priority is to be for His kingdom and His righteousness. Instead of worrying about the things of this life we should be "worrying" about how we can be more like Jesus, how we can advance His kingdom here on earth, and how we His righteousness can become such a part of our lives that other people are drawn to Him.

So what does it look like when we are seeking Gods kingdom and His righteousness? John MacArthur says, "To seek God’s kingdom is seek to win people into that kingdom, that they might be saved and God might be glorified." So part of seeking God's kingdom is doing whatever you can to help build that kingdom. He goes on to say, " Instead of longing after the things of this world, we are to hunger and thirst for the things of the world to come, which are characterized above all else by God’s perfect righteousness and holiness." Seeking God's righteousness then is pursuing a holy life; it's not focusing on the cares of this world, but on the one to come. A few verses earlier Jesus said, "Don't collect for yourselves treasures here on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal. But collect for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves don't break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." (Matthew 6:19-21)

So the cure for worry is to focus all of our attention on God, on His kingdom, and on His righteousness. When we do these things we are storing up treasure in heaven, and showing that our heart is not in this world, but in the world to come. You say you want to stop worrying; take your focus off of your problems and put it on your heavenly Father. There is not a single situation you will ever encounter that is bigger than He is.
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