Two of the most powerful verses of Scripture in my mind are found in Matthew 6:33-34. “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Jesus had been talking to them about not worrying in life and pointed out that constant worry about what was going to happen next leaves us without faith and hope in the world. We live as the heathen when we build our life around worry. So, Jesus is giving us the cure, the solution, and the answer to the worries of our lives. When we seek above all else in life the kingdom and righteousness of the Lord we can know that God will take care of the physical needs we face in life. God’s promise is that he will throw in for us things like food, clothes, and shelter if we just seek his kingdom and righteousness first in life. What an astounding promise and it comes from the very lips of God. If we really believe Jesus’ words and we know we are truly living our life where the kingdom and righteousness of the Lord have the priority in our lives, there is no reason to worry about anything. We should be able to live one day at a time with ease without thinking about what will happen to us tomorrow or next week or next year. But, as good as it sounds, it is still difficult to live life without worry, stress, and concern about what the future holds for us.
I suspect the problem goes back to the very beginning of the statement. Worry becomes so natural in our lives. I often think back to my sweet mother who was one of the most gentle and caring women that God ever made. Her challenge in life was worrying about her children, grandchildren and beyond. While she loved the Lord with all her being and was devoted to her family, she always worried about whatever struggles her offspring were dealing with and needed to check on them often. The problem with that is that some of her children, including the one writing this, tend to follow the same pattern. We don’t just worry. We want to fix the problems. Sometimes, we get in the way of God trying to fix things before He is allowed to work in the situation.
When you have lived a long time and have developed a pattern of worrying about things in life instead of living one day at a time and trusting God to move in the different situations, how do you change? I want to be the one that trusts my Lord totally. I want to live my life in such a peace that it truly passes all understanding. These verses from the lips of Jesus hold the answer. So the problem in my life and maybe in yours as well isn’t a head thing. It isn’t that we don’t know the right things to do. It’s more of a heart issue.
Is it that I’m not seeking his kingdom first in my life? I suspect that there are times when God’s rule in my life is the challenge. Instead of thinking about what the Lord wants in my life, I’m thinking about what I want. If his kingdom is first in my life it will mean that I put him in charge of all circumstances and situations. He must sit on the throne of my heart day and night and every hour of that day or night. The problem too often is I face situations when I want to take the rule back and handle those problems myself and then when I face one that is too big for me I want to put God back on the throne to let Him handle it. We’ve all heard the question “What would Jesus do?” We may even have worn the bracelet WWJD. But there is a better question for us to use. Instead of what would Jesus do, we should ask “What does Jesus want me to do?” His reign in my life must be constant and consistent.
Beyond that, he not only challenged us to seek his kingdom but his righteousness so that all the other things could be added to us. Jesus walked through life in a constant attitude of “Not my will but yours be done.” He constantly declared, “I didn’t come to do my own will but the will of him who sent me.” Being righteous involves a right relationship with with God. Of course, I must remember, “There is none righteous, no not one. All we like sheep have gone astray, even to his own way.” Jesus was able to live right with the Father all the time.
The marvel of being a Christian is that we have the righteousness of Jesus placed on our account with the Father. So, why do I still need to seek righteousness? I’m not seeking the imputed righteousness of the Lord but I am seek to live the right kind of life that looks more like him all the time so my light may shine in my world.
The more I seek to have Jesus rule as king in my life and the more I seek to live in that right relationship with God, the more I can live trusting God to take care of my needs in this world and the more I can live one day at a time without worrying about what the future holds. Whatever happens in the future, God is still in control and his word will still be trustworthy. Change in this life will always be there, but I know that there is more than just this life. We are headed toward home all the time! God please, help me and all who read this to not get off the road that leads home but to keep traveling one day at a time. God, please take my worries and fears away and fill my heart with trust in You to handle all the challenges in front of me.