In these days of economic turmoil, fears of a double-dip recession, and so many who are either unemployed or under-employed, it is vitally important as Christians not to give in to anxiety. Personally, my career is in the mortgage industry. Not the best field to be in the last few years. Anxiety over my family’s finances is a daily battle (with regular victories thanks to the Lord, my God). Turning to Christ in these times is the only answer as those in Christ have a hope and a promise beyond this life thanks to Jesus’ work on the cross. The trials of this life are just that: trials, which prepare us to enter the heavenly kingdom of Christ. Of course this principal applies to all anxieties arising from any type of trial.
I was reminded this morning of this passage from Matthew:
Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look 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? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, 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 of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. (Matthew 6:25-33)
Seek God first! Christian, go to him in prayer, read His holy Word, praise His holy name, and trust in His promises. Jesus says to seek the Lord and His righteousness first. Anxiety solves nothings. Put away anxiety and seek the Lord through prayer.
Work hard, of course. Jesus’ instruction in Matthew is not an invitation to laziness or sluggishness. We are to “work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” (Colossians 3:23) But His instruction is a reminder that God is our Provider, God is sovereign over all creation, and God cares for us.
Seek the Lord first. When we do it is liberating. We are reminded that our purpose on this Earth is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. Just as Jesus took hold of Peter as he was sinking into the sea, He takes hold of our hand and pulls us up to stand with Him atop the waves of this life that threaten to drag us under. Let us run the course of this life, “fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2, NASB)