Devotion and Prayer for Week of August 11, 2013

Meditation for the week of August 11, 2013

  

 “Which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest?”

Luke 12:25-26

 

Are you anxious?  It’s hard not to be, isn’t it?  After all look at everything that happens in the world.  There are shootings happening constantly.  People all over the world don’t have enough to eat.  There is all kind of pain, suffering and illness.  And perhaps these things affect you directly.

Do you sometimes worry what will happen to you next?  Do you have to worry where your next meal will come from, or where the payment will come from for your next month’s rent?  Do you have a disease that will likely be terminal?  And does all of this worry you?  Sometimes it’s almost easier to ask how this couldn’t worry you.  Of course it’s concerning.

But Jesus tells us not worry, so don’t….

That’s easy to say, but a lot harder to do isn’t it?  Of course He makes a good point.  If you are anxious about something, how does it really benefit you?  It doesn’t, does it?  Does worrying help to make your life longer?  No, as He says, “which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?”  In fact, medically we find that worrying often has the opposite effect.  The more we worry, the more we strain our bodies and the harder it is for them to function properly.  So why do we worry?

Ultimately, we worry because we don’t trust God.  This is a huge problem too.  The First Commandment our Lord gave was that we should have no other God’s.  As Martin Luther explained in his Small Catechism, this means that, “We should fear love and trust in God above all things.”  When we worry we’re not trusting in God above all things.  We are trusting in our own wisdom above His, thinking that we really know what’s best for us, and if we don’t get that, we’ll be missing out.

But Jesus in this same passage tells us that the ravens don’t reap and sow, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them.  He then tells us how much more value we are than birds.  The truth is God cares for us.  He cares for us even more than we care for ourselves.  He knows what ultimately is best for us.  He knows what is best not only for this life, but ultimately what will draw us to an eternity with Him.

This love for us is what caused Him to send Jesus to die for our sins.  Our sins should separate us from Him, and they do.  We sin when we trust ourselves more than Him, but Jesus was the One who trusted God perfectly for us, and in baptism Scripture promises that we have been clothed in Christ.  This means that when God sees us, He doesn’t see our sin and our failings, He sees Jesus.  He sees all of the perfect things that Jesus has done.

What wondrous love is this?  God has not spared His own Son for us.  If He loves us enough to do that, how much more can we be sure that He will care for us daily?  If He cares for you daily, what reason is there to be anxious?  Not the fear of being taken care of, He promises to do that.  Not your sins, they have been forgiven in Jesus.  Thanks be to God.

 

Our Weekly Prayer

Lord God, Heavenly Father.  You promise that we are more valuable than even the birds of the air, for which You care.  You have proved our value to You by sending Your Son for us.  Grant us always to fear, love and trust in You above all things.  Amen.