This past month I’ve been enjoying a small group Bible study discussion with 2-3 female high school athletes each week. We first talk about their grades and what they need to work on and then we talk about Jesus. Cool lineup if ya ask me!
We’ve been reading and discussing together the beautiful yet challenging Sermon of the Mount (Matthew 5-7) bit by bit. It was sparked by an initial question from one of the students asking, “How should we pray?” I thought it might be appropriate to start with how Jesus told His disciples how to pray 🙂 (Matthew 6:9-13). Then, another athlete in the group was intrigued by the passage after that and asked if we could discuss it the next week. That passage she saw, had the words, “Do Not Worry…”
So, let’s stop there. I am going to confess very loudly and clearly to you all right now: I worry. A lot. I’d like to think I’ve made progress over the years, but it still feels like climbing up a mountain of impossibility. Sure, I can blame it on my family line (I won’t mention any names, ha ha), but ultimately I have the ability to just simply let those worries go and not worry. Why might I think that? Because Jesus simply said, “Do not worry.” He also pointed to the birds. Look how they’re taken care of! They don’t freak out trying to get everything they think they need; they are just simply provided for. (That was paraphrased..)
So often our worries about yesterday or tomorrow. The challenge and the opportunity we have today is to BE HERE TODAY. Be in each conversation, each task, each prayer without letting the worries of tomorrow or the regrets/hurt of yesterday overcome us.
I have a funny feeling one of the young ladies involved in this group I mentioned was drawn to this passage because she also deals with worrying too much. Worrying makes us stressed, tired, overwhelmed, and often pessimistic. Ironically we choose it, most of the time for that need to feel in control but instead it keeps us from gratitude and giving and receiving freely.
Since it’s summer (officially!), here’s a task for us: Listen for and look for those birds all around us. Remember what Christ promised His disciples they’d be taken care of (and us) and what He told His disciples instead to do. Instead of worrying, seek first His Kingdom (Matthew 6:33), in other words, joining Him in what He’s up to all around us (love, restoration, peace).
Let’s enjoy TODAY.