"And he said to his disciples, "Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! And 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? Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried. For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. Instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you.
"Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."
Isn't it wonderful to know that God loves us and cares for us? I think many conservative Christians brush over this fact because they see it as "prideful" or over-emphasized by "liberal" Christians, but nothing can change the truth of it, nor the joy we have for knowing it. God told us so because He wanted us to know it. It is a glorious truth!
This passage reminds us of God's special care for us. Why should we worry that we won't have enough to eat, or clothes to wear, or a place to live, or that we will never marry or get a job or whatever the case may be? God sees our needs and He always provides. He did for our family in very special ways while my dad was off work. Many times He has provided what we needed just when we needed it. He knows, He cares, and He provides, just as He does for the flower of the field and for the little birds in winter.
Not only does He provide for physical needs, but He also provides for our emotional needs. Many a time have I felt in the quiet of my heart that I had no more love to give, that I could not hope any longer, that joy was impossible, or I have felt lonely and longing, and He has reached down and met that need with Himself. He gives us that love, joy, peace, hope, fulfillment. For those of us who long for the right partner to make up the other half of our hearts, God provides us with Himself, and in His time, if it is His will, He will provide us with that special person. He cares for that, and He will meet that need. There is absolutely no reason to worry that He won't.
Instead, we have the joyous privilege of resting in Him and, in the waiting time, of seeking Him. While He provides for our physical and emotional needs, we are to seek His kingdom and His righteousness, the things that will last forever. We are to actively come before Him and learn of Him and take His yoke upon us; we are to daily deny ourselves, take up our crosses, and follow Him; we are to read His Word, sing praises to His Name, reflect on His character, and proclaim His Gospel to the world. It is our duty to seek Him; it is His joy to provide.
I am so glad that He has revealed His loving and caring heart to us in His Word. It would be a miserable life indeed if we did not know and accept the truth of His lovingkindness and goodness to His Creation. But to know God is inexpressible joy.
Pictures by Bethany :-)