“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.” (John 14:1 NIV)
“Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27 NIV)
In Jesus’ last speech to us, His disciples, He longs for us to place our trust in Him. He assures us that we truly have nothing to worry about. He encourages us to not “let our hearts be troubled”. In a world where everyone is focused on oneself, it is easy to get lost and feel overwhelmed. Emotions flair up and confusion reigns. It’s easy to start worrying and to be troubled with all the events that are happening in our lives.
Nevertheless, Jesus encourages us to trust in Him. This kind of trust will make us rise above our circumstances and conquer the troubles in our heart. The problem is: do we really trust in Jesus, or do we make worrying our prime directive? You see, the two are related! Trust and worry are antonyms. Opposites. We either trust or we worry. We can’t do both!
“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.” (Matt 6:26 NIV)
No matter what the circumstances we find ourselves in, God will provide! That is a fact! We have nothing to worry about!
However, this is an interesting text. Birds usually have no other choice but to rely on God to provide for all of their necessities. But once in a while, they start relying on humans for food. When this happens, they start to worry as well! It’s like an epidemic! Take seagulls for example. Throw them a morsel of food, and before you know it you have a battle on your hands, with several gulls all fighting over that insignificant piece of bread, totally forgetting the providence of God.
I experienced this firsthand last summer. I grow berries in my garden. My personal favourites are those not quite as well known in North America, such as gooseberries, red currants, black currents and white currents (Yes, they have them in almost every colour! Neat don’t you think?) Normally the bushes hold far more than I could ever eat, but this year something was different. Many of the berries hung from the branches of the berry bushes, half-eaten!
Who was eating my berries?
I noticed that every time I went to collect my daily berries I would hear the angry chattering of a bird nearby, but if I would look around, everything would become silent. I was never able to locate the source of the commotion, but every time I would reach out my hand to try to rescue one or two whole berries, I had this funny feeling I was being watched with eyes of hate.
It didn’t deter me from getting my daily dose of berries, no worries there, but it did mean there weren’t nearly as many berries for me to pick this year!
Then one day, a few days later, I looked out my upstairs bedroom window just in time to see a strange sight. A starling was hanging upside down from the branches of one of my berry bushes. As I watched, I noticed he was gorging himself on the very berries I so delight in.
The mystery of the berry patch was resolved!
There truly was discontent when I came to pick my daily berries. That starling was worried I would eat all of “his” berries. He was completely unaware that there were plenty for both of us! He was worried for nothing!
Too often we lean on our own understanding instead of trusting 100% in God. During these times, worrying become our main focus. But in all honesty, worrying is truly a complete waste of time. Our Lord WILL come through for us, if we only believe!
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Prov 3:5-6 NIV)
Would you like some berries? I’ve got dozens of half-eaten ones to give away!
(To access the entire “Jesus’ Deepest Desires” devotional series, please click here.)