Lord Jesus, yours is the peace that passes understanding. Grant me that peace that comes from being centered on you.
Read LUKE 12:22-34
Do Not Worry
22 Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. 24 Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! 25 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life[a]? 26 Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?
27 “Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 28 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! 29 And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. 30 For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.
32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
- Luke 12:25 Or single cubit to your height
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
‘We rest on thee, our shield and our defender. / We go not forth alone against the foe. / Strong in thy strength … in thy name we go.’1
Jesus often used vivid hyperbole to make his point. He does not mean that we must never be anxious, never have concerns about anything at all. A parent should be anxious about a sick child. Jesus himself was worried about what would happen to the disciples after he left them2 and he agonized about the unimaginable horror of the cross.3 There are, however, two keys in the passage to understanding exactly what Jesus meant. First is his opening word, ‘Therefore’ (v 22). Luke intends us to understand that Jesus’ words immediately follow the parable of the rich fool, a crucial connection spoiled by a heading in my Bible. We must not allow ourselves to become like him, preoccupied with material things and selfish pleasure. As Jesus frequently points out, the more we possess, the harder that becomes. Following Jesus awakens our consciousness to the spiritual dimensions of life. When the rat race of materialism starts to control us, we must remember Jesus’ words: ‘life is more than food, and the body more than clothes’ (v 23).
The second key is in Jesus’ conclusion, where he lifts our thoughts of earthly life into an eternal dimension. As Jesus’ ‘little flock’ (v 32), we need not be afraid, no matter what happens to us. Do not forget that Jesus’ words, ‘Do not be afraid,’ were spoken when he was on the way to his cross and his followers were on the path to persecution and death. Of course we fear pain, but beyond pain and death lies eternity. God cares about us and about our ultimate future. The God of the universe, the Creator of stars and galaxies, cares even about birds and flowers. God knows their lives and takes pleasure in them. This same God is pleased to give us the kingdom.
With our Lord of the needle’s eye, all things are possible. Ask the Lord to forgive us when we value material things and to help us discern the still small voice. May God take us to eternity.
Holy Spirit, fill my mind and heart with those things that concern you, with the assurances in Scripture that speak of God’s love and care.
Last Updated on November 23, 2023 by kingstar