Hi everyone. Rob here.
In Luke 12 Jesus tells his disciples that they don’t need to worry about their life, about food or clothing. Trust God and he will take care of you is Jesus’ message. In verse 29 he defines worry for us:
True worry comes when we set our hearts on things that are not the main thing. This leads to striving. It leads to a cycle of expectation and disappointment. It leads to selfishness because you’re constantly thinking, “how do I get what I want?” So the answer to worry is not to try and make ourselves worry less; it is to give our hearts to the main thing. Therefore Jesus tells us in verse 31:
But seek his kingdom and these things will be given to you as well.
How do we seek his kingdom? The best way to find out how a kingdom works is to get to know the king. The way Jesus lived and the content of what he taught all pointed to life in God’s kingdom. He lived in oneness with the Father through the Holy Spirit. He gave his time and energy freely but would then spend time alone with the Father away from the crowds. He held no fear of people’s words or reactions. He honoured the least and challenged those with the most to do the same. He resisted temptation and had a clear sense of purpose, identity and mission. He then gave up his life, conquered death and said follow me. That is, Jesus has removed all the barriers between us and the kingdom of God by offering himself as the pathway to that kingdom. ‘I am the way, the truth and the life” he said. If we’re struggling to believe that we can have life in God’s kingdom then Jesus gives us this in the next verse:
Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom.
The kingdom is ours. We belong to it and live our lives in it and for it. Christ is our king and, therefore, he has our allegiance. We give our hearts over to him and look to the resources of his kingdom to provide for our needs. This is why Jesus challenges his disciples to sell their possessions and give to the poor.
For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
This is where it gets hard. We get used to providing for our own needs. We get used to a certain amount of cash flow and comfort. I know I do anyway! We have a natural resistance to all of that being threatened. But God isn’t threatening our well being. He’s inviting us into the fullness of life that comes from trusting him and the faith that comes from seeing our needs met through the resources of God’s kingdom. What Jesus is really saying is that if it’s keeping us from God then it’s gotta go! It could be money, comforts, our job, the way we do relationships or do church. If it’s causing us to strive, panic or manipulate rather than trust then there’s a problem. If it keeps us from knowing and living in the wonder and glory of God’s kingdom that has been given to us, then there’s a problem. We cannot give ourselves fullness of life. That is what our Father wants to give us. Let’s trust him and let him by giving our hearts over to our king Jesus and enjoy life in his kingdom.