You may have heard already but I plan on beginning a new chapter in my life next month – that chapter is called retirement. I am finding out that retirement does not come without a lot of planning – many things we take for granted during the working phase of our lives must be planned out in order to last for the next many years until we take our final breaths and go to the last chapter of life.

Not to be confused with planning and preparation is the concept of worrying about the future. Jesus teaches about worry in Matthew 6:25-34:

For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

So what does worry gain us? Have you ever solved a problem or avoided an unpleasant situation by worrying about it? What worry does do is hurt our health – both physical and mental. Worry keeps our thoughts from doing anything constructive or spiritual, affects how we treat others, and shows a lack of trust in our God.

Do we need to prepare and make preparations for the future? Yes, God gave us intellect to know we need to do what we can to prepare, but after we do our part we need to let God do his part. To worry about things we have no control over serves no useful purpose and shows a lack of trust in God, a lack of faith in God, and a lack of confidence in the Christians we fellowship with. We read in verses 33-34 “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Reading the newspaper and/or internet news shows us we have enough to be concerned about each day and it is our obligation to ourself, to our families, and most importantly to God, to respond to our daily trouble by praying to God to give us wisdom so we can take the steps we are able to take and to let God take care of the rest.

Claude Foster

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