Luke 12:1-59, 1 Kings 10:4-10, Psalm 88:1-7
Corrie Ten Boom was a courageous Dutch Christian who harbored Jews in her home to hide them from the Nazis during World War II. She was eventually caught and sent to a concentration camp. Perhaps you’ve read some of her story in her most well-known book, The Hiding Place.
If anyone had cause to suffer recurring worry and fear, it was Corrie. Before her arrest, every moment of every day was precarious. Would her neighbors figure out what was going on? Would they rat her out to the authorities? Would the police show up at her door? What if she couldn’t get enough food to care for everyone in her home? After her capture, her world was wrought with pain and suffering. She was left wondering if each day might be her last. Would she be further tortured? Would she be executed? What special horrors awaited her tomorrow?
What’s amazing, though, is that while she endured some incredibly difficult days, she held onto hope and trusted in God’s provision. On worry and fear, she famously said: “Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength.”
For most of us, our current level of stress is nowhere near what Corrie’s should have been. But, if I’m honest, I must admit there have been times in my life when I’ve been so consumed by my preparations for tomorrow that I’ve completely missed the joy of today. I’m willing to wager I’m not alone in that.
What’s interesting about Luke 12 is that Jesus’s audience was facing many of the same issues we face today: civil and social unrest, economic uncertainty, extreme political divisiveness, and the whole gamut of personal traumas and tragedies. Jewish life under Roman rule was incredibly difficult and could be unpredictable. Still, Jesus invited His hearers to “consider the ravens” and “consider the wildflowers”(vv.24,27)—to trust God with the future.
Perhaps we should consider taking Jesus up on His invitation today. No matter how disorienting our world might be, let us seek first the kingdom of God, not because all our problems will magically disappear, but because we have every reason to trust God. The burden of trying to control tomorrow is too great to bear, and any sense of real control over the future is an illusion. Let’s release that false sense of control to the Lord today, and regardless of our circumstances, let’s embrace peace that is beyond all understanding (Philippians 4:7).
Written by Andrew Stoddard