This morning I concentrated on the second section of the Thanksgiving Bible Lesson and nearly missed something important. When we come to a familiar passage it is easy to just zoom through it. If I catch myself doing that, I stop and go back, praying with humility, "Father, help me to remain teachable. I know You are giving me grace for today and I want to be watching and praying for it." The passage is from Luke 12. Jesus is preaching and teaching. He has already told them to 'have no fear' about things that could harm the body. In this passage, Luke 12:22, he goes on: "Take no thought for your life, what ye shall it eat, nor about the body what ye shall put on." I didn't at first see an immediate application in my life but as I took a moment to think about his words and what is going on around me, it did.
The Message Bible translates this as 'be not anxious about your everyday life. Don't fuss about what's on the table at mealtime or if the clothes in your closet are fashionable.' If I am honest with myself I have moments when I am tempted to be anxious about my everyday life. Will I have the finances to meet the needs of that day? Will there be enough to allow gifts to the ones I love this holiday season? Am I worried that I will eat more goodies than I should and put on a few pounds? Am I giving up my dominion over the fish of the sea and the fowl of the air as I savor my tuna steaks or chicken parmesan?
I am leaving on Saturday for a one week visit with Matt and Emily in California. I am so grateful that this long anticipated visit is finally going to happen. It is just not ok to go so long without being with them. And yet, I pulled out my suitcase and started to worry about what clothes I would take. How will I look to them? Everything I own is an old and trusted friend but my wardrobe is hardly fashionable. I don't want to be what Charles Schultz would call a 'fuss budget'. So I am taking the Master's words to heart and will challenge all those negative thoughts as often as they come up. I will counter them with confidence instead of anxiety. I know I can trust my Father to give me grace for today and every day. What others will see is my love for Him shining all through me and divine Love enveloping all of us.
It will be interesting to see how many times I remind myself to 'stop fussing' and take that moment instead to be with God and feel His goodness. That is a much better thing to 'take thought' about.