Be Anxious for Nothing
Jesus said, "And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?”1
As most of our Daily Encounter readers know, I grew up in Australia, a land that is only slightly smaller than mainland USA, but there are more people within a 200 mile radius of where I now live in Southern California than the whole of Australia combined. It seems that most of them are on the LA freeways at the same time during the rush hour traffic. Why they call it rush hour I'll never know. As another has said, it should be called slow hour!
However, recently when I was driving home from Los Angeles on the busy 405 freeway—where it was ten lanes wide with hundreds of cars traveling at high speed in both directions—I noticed a young palm tree growing out of a crack in the pavement at the foot of the three-foot-high concrete barrier right in the middle of the freeway that separates the speeding traffic flowing in opposite directions. This tiny tree was only about a meter or so from the fast lane and was totally oblivious to the thousands of cars that zip by at high speed every hour of the day and night. The thought of it blew me away.
Now, I have no ambition to plant myself where that palm tree had planted itself—that may be okay for a palm tree but not for people—to plant one's self in such a situation would be suicide. But in the midst of the rush and bustle of everyday life with all its endless pressures, little by little I'm working on learning to trust in God and be calm and peaceful (like that palm tree), realizing that, in the words of the unknown poet:
'Tis not the softer things of life
Which stimulate man's will to strive;
But bleak adversity and strife
Do most to keep man's will alive.
O'er rose-strewn paths the weaklings creep,
But brave hearts dare to climb the steep.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, again today I commit and trust my life and way to you in all that I am and do. Help me to trust you no matter what this day may bring, and not become anxious or afraid knowing that my times are in your hands. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
1. Matthew 6:28-30 (NIV).