This morning didn't start off so well. I'm exhausted for a great reason; I got roughly four hours of sleep, as I went to my niece's 1 year old birthday party, 4 hours away, and we did not get home until just after 1 am. I get home, do a little bit more some packing for church camp (we're leaving this evening), wake up this morning, conclude said packing, and get ready for church. Great? Great. Fine? Fine. Then, as is my habit, after I bring all of my gear to the living room, I head outside to water the plants and tend our tiny vegetable garden when I notice it looked like something ran through one of our squash plants. The poor thing was slumped over. I've been tending and taking care of this all summer...how can I possibly leave for camp when this happens??? I go outside, pick a squash bug off said plant (and stomp it thoroughly) try ti right it, and in the process break off a few healthy leaves, water my plants, and enter the house feeling slightly defeated. As I'm sitting here in my office, feeling sorry for myself, I ask, more Me than God, who will take care of things while I'm away? (My wife is capable, but this is my thought process). It's almost as if God is asking "Do you trust me?" The plant may die. So far, it's been a source of food for my family and I, and has produced a bumper crop of squash for us. But if it dies, God is still good, and He will provide. We depend on it; but God is who we should truly depend on. He has never let us hang, we've always been provided for, and He knows exactly what we need (Didn't Jesus say that somewhere?). In going to Camp and serving the Lord, I am serving another need. The Church, my family, the garden, and everything else will be all right. God will manage, and God will remove as He sees fit. I just need to stop worrying, stressing, and let Him handle things. He's a better Gardener than I am, and He knows what to prune, what to remove, and what to help grow. Today, are you hearing God ask "Do you trust me?"
Matthew 6:5-15 English Standard Version (ESV)
The Lord's Prayer
5 “And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. 6 But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
7 “And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8 Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.9 Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.[a] 10 Your kingdom come, your will be done,[b] on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread,[c] 12 and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.[d]
14 For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, 15 but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
a. Matthew 6:9 Or Let your name be kept holy, or Let your name be treated with reverence
b. Matthew 6:10 Or Let your kingdom come, let your will be done
c. Matthew 6:11 Or our bread for tomorrow
d. Matthew 6:13 Or the evil one; some manuscripts add For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever. Amen
6:19-34 English Standard Version (ESV)
Lay Up Treasures in Heaven
19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust[a] destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, 23 but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
24 “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.[b]
Do Not Be Anxious
25 “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? 26 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?27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?[c] 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 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? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
b. Matthew 6:24 Greek mammon, a Semitic word for money or possessions
c. Matthew 6:27 Or a single cubit to his stature; a cubit was about 18 inches or 45 centimeters