Surprise, Surprise – He Provides

Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

Matthew 6:25-33 

A Scripture passage like this one is often taken out of context and twisted to mean something other than what was originally intended. 

As a matter of fact, this very passage has been quoted many times to advance the false narrative that God will always give you everything you want as long as you “do your Christian duties”.

The Apostle Paul’s list of sufferings in 2 Corinthians 11 (particularly verse 27) indicates that seeking God’s kingdom above and before all else — and Paul is a prime example of someone who did just that — doesn’t obligate God to give you the easy life. Christ followers are actually promised suffering

As you read the whole chapter of Matthew 6, you’ll notice that Jesus was (and is) primarily concerned with our motives, which is the main thrust of the passage at the top of this page. Don’t be anxious. It’s not doing you any good. God loves you. Your life is in His hands. Seek Him and let Him take care of your needs.

The entire sermon that Jesus delivered on a mountain in Galilee flew in the face of everyone listening, piercing the deepest parts of their hearts (instead of the behavior-based teaching they were comfortable with) — and continues to do so to all who listen today.

 Jesus didn’t speak those words only for the benefit of the crowds thronging around Him. He planned from eternity past that you and I would read them someday. And the funny thing about truth is that it’s not affected by time, distance, language or culture. 

What was true about God and humanity 2,000 years ago on a mountain in Galilee is just as true today wherever it is you happen to be. 

Over the years of my injury, Emily and I have found ourselves constantly worrying, being anxious, and doing anything but seeking God’s kingdom and righteousness. Scroll back up to the words of Jesus at the top of this page. 

What common sense (yet so counterintuitive)! Don’t be anxious, God knows what you need. If He feeds the birds and clothes the ground, He can take care of you who are worth so much more. 

And yet, even though God’s tender daddy care is so glaringly obvious on paper, when the rubber meets the road it’s easy to forget. 

When Michigan passed the law last summer that slashed in half the auto insurance reimbursement rates we rely on for my caregivers, medical expenses, Emily’s income and many other things, worry and anxiety settled in like unwelcome houseguests. 

In the months since that law was passed, God has been drawing us closer to Himself as we’ve been learning to come to Him in faith with our worries and fears. Sometimes we simply cling to the truth as we fight to believe what we can’t always see. It’s not a bad place, however difficult it may be at times. 

But only God has the ability to simultaneously bless and rebuke with a gift. We had just encountered some surprise medical bills last month and were starting to stress about how we would pay them — along with everything else that won’t be covered by auto insurance now — when a friend unexpectedly sent us a significant amount of money. Then another friend did. And another. And another. 

We have been overwhelmed by God’s provision through you who have so graciously given to us when you didn’t even know we needed it. Some of you have said you’re giving us your auto insurance refund from the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association, others of you mentioned having more than you need. Still others haven’t said anything at all. But every single one of you has blown us away with your generosity. 

This post is a thank you note. We love you. Keep seeking first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness. You’ll never be dissatisfied.