Thursday, 14 August 2008

Do Not Worry

[Chapel address at St John's, Term 2, 2008. The reading was Matthew 6:25-34. Part of the 'Jesus is Different Series'.]

What are the things you worry about? ...

Some are important, some perhaps not so important. But we still worry. Let's hear what Jesus thinks... (the reading occurred here)

We worry. And about all sorts of things. Some things are not worth the worry because they are not important enough to worry about. Others are not worth worrying about because they are too far into the future, so they might not happen at all. Others things are important and worthy of our concern, but we often worry too much.

Jesus can help us here. He points us to the important things, the things that are deeper and more fulfilling. These are the things worthy of our concern, even our worry. He thinks that many of the things we worry about are not worthy of our worry. They just aren't important enough. Like reputation, what your peers might think. Now you might think that you can't stop being concerned about some of these things. OK, then deal with it, get it over and done with, and move on. If you can't do that, then stronger action is needed.

Jesus thinks the stronger action is to trust God. You are lovable and deeply loved by God. All will be well. Look at the birds of the air, he says, God looks after them, so God will do the same for you. So those things that you worry about that probably aren't the things most important, but still they worry you, trust God instead. And this is the strategy also for those things that are worthy of our worry, but that we might worry about too much. By all means be concerned, even worry at times, but don't let it get you down. Trust God. God will see it through for you.

A story to finish.

An king sentenced a man to death. the man begged for mercy, and added, "If the king will be merciful and spare my life, I shall teach his horse to fly in a year's time."

"Done," said the king. "But if at the end of this period the horse cannot fly, you will be executed."

When his anxious family later asked the man how he planned to achieve this, he said, "In the course of the year the king may die. Or the horse may die, or, who knows, the horse may learn to fly!"

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