Wednesday, March 11, 2015

100 Days on Jesus’ Sermon Mount (Day 61)

Jesus said, “But if God clothes the grass in the paddocks like this, even though it is here today but tomorrow is tossed into the furnace, won’t he do much more for you, you people of tiny faith?”
— Matthew 6:30 (USC)
Blessed is the assurance we have in the above verse, yet, as Jesus observes, there is the preponderance within us to look through the perfectly observable gifts of God given to us, and then to look the other way!
Life in God (and even without our recognition of God’s provision) is the endowment of every good thing.
We are given the capacity of survival, of work to care for our families, of ingenuity to creatively solve our problems, and of the very wherewithal to live long — though some lives are inherently shorter than others.
God is the great Provider! Jehovah-jireh (or Yahweh-yireh) was the name Abraham gave God when a ram was provided by God so Abraham wasn’t compelled to sacrifice Isaac on the altar of his Lord (Genesis 22).
And God has delivered us out of many sticky situations, too. Even out of situations where our faith was tiny, as was the disciples’.
The humanistic point of faith is this: if we have faith that God will provide — because he always does — then we will save ourselves a great deal of anxious distress. Faith simply makes sense.
Not every provision of God’s, however, do we find personally satisfactory. We begin to doubt God’s intent and ability to deliver us in the way we think we need. The truth is, though, God knows what we need more than we ever will! We think what we need is the best for us, but God knows that what is best for us is what we need.
His best and our best are usually two entirely different things. God’s best for us is wisdom. Ours is usually conceited. The Lord’s best takes into account the whole of life and our societal context. Our prerogative is usually bent toward selfish gain, which is entirely problematic in a world where we are but an island in sea of stars.
God will give us what we need whether we stress or don’t stress, whether we complain or are thankful, and whether we attribute it to him or not.
Trusting God for his provision is the grandest vision of wisdom anyone can attain to.
1.     In what area of your life at present do you trust God’s provision and in what area do you not?
2.     Think of a time in someone’s life that you know where God provided something they were immensely grateful for. How was that experienced by that person?
© 2015 S. J. Wickham.
Note: USC version is Under the Southern Cross, The New Testament in Australian English (2014). This translation was painstakingly developed by Dr. Richard Moore, a NT Greek scholar, over nearly thirty years.

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