Tuesday, April 2, 2019

DAY 21 - New Provision: How Not to Worry? (Please click here for English podcast)

Congratulations! You have gone through half of our 40 days Break.Build daily devotion. Don't stop! If you can have a non-stop daily devotion, then on Day 41 you have a better chance to build a life-time lifestyle of daily intimate relationship with God. Don't stop!


1.   Put on your “brakes” and stop for a moment of silence
2.   Wait for God. Breathe deep for God's peace. Exhale your worries.

Praise and Thanksgiving

1.   Think through your day, all the times that made you smile
2.   Thank God for all those moments, and for all those people
3.   Open your heart to praise the Lord

     The Lord lives, and blessed be my rock,
    and exalted be the God of my salvation—
      Psalm 18:46
Confession and repentance

1.  Pray for the Holy Spirit to work in you:

     “Dear Holy Spirit, shine your light into the places of darkness in my life. Show me my sins, everything that blocks me from encountering God. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.”

2.  Through the Holy Spirit, examine yourself for a short silence and then pray:

     "Dear Lord Jesus, thank you for dying on the cross for our sins and being victorious over death and sin. I confess my sin to you(pause, to tell Jesus what the Holy Spirit has shown you). Forgive my sins by your blood and help me follow you. Holy Spirit, fill me that I may be able to receive your gift to love God and His people. In Jesus Name I pray, Amen."

The Word

 25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[e]?
28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 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—you of little faith?31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own"
                                                        Matthew 6:25-34

Let's have a time to be still and give the Holy Spirit space to speak through the passage of scripture we have just read. Offer this time up to Jesus as you listen to him, while listening to "Gabriel's Oboe"

My Listening
     Worry! Worry! Worry! Worry! Worry! Worry!

     The word "worry" appears six times in this passage of ten verses. Is Jesus talking about the problem of worrying? Is He talking about how not to worry?

     Well, the answer is in verse 33:
     "But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well."                     Matthew 6:33

      Why do we have so many worries?  Because we can't get those things we want to have. We worry about almost everything. Many people can't sleep because of too many worries. 

      Most of us know how to sing "seek ye first the kingdom of God". But, do you know the context in this passage when Jesus says that? It all starts with two things:

1. Seek first the kingdom
    When you seek a place, you want to go to that place, right? Jesus says, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near." So, Jesus is calling our attention to the first thing first.  The first thing he said is that we need to repent so that we can be a part of his kingdom. I guess you have repented, so you should be in his kingdom now.

2. And his righteousness
   When we are a part his kingdom, we live in a new standard, a new lifestyle: that is his righteousness.  It is a part of our identity as his followers. Actually, that is the whole message of the Sermon on the Mount. 

     Our lifestyle starts first with our new way of being. We live out what Jesus talks about in the Beatitudes. That's our way of being: admitting we are poor in spirit, able to mourn for our own sinful nature and keep on repenting, becoming more like Jesus who is meek and humble, hunger and thirst to learn more about Jesus, the Bible and more, become merciful, being more transparent before God and other people, becoming peacemakers and willing and ready to be persecuted. That's our new being! It is the development of our character. A new "you". That is you! When people can see the new you they should be able to see Jesus in you! 

    Then we live out a new "doing". Our new lifestyle leads us to give more, to pray more and to fast more. Jesus says the Pharisees got it all wrong. They made use of giving, praying and fasting to let other people to see that they were more holy and righteous than other people. But, Jesus wants us to understand that the new being leads to the new doing. You can't give more, pray more and fast more to be more like Jesus. It's the other way round that your being in the kingdom through repentance transforms you to be more like Jesus and then naturally you will give more, pray more and fast more. 

     And if you can give more, pray more and fast more, would we live each day in worries? Probably, no. Although struggles are inevitable, we focus our attention on Jesus and his calling for us, and not on our priorities. We need to remind our worries that we have a big God.

     If you are being more like Jesus, you will surely experience that God is your Provider and He will surely provide everything you need. 

     Remember, new provision starts with new being and new doing. 

    Dear Lord Jesus,
    Lead us to live out our new being and doing so that we can enjoy the new provision from you and that we won't live our day in worries.  In Jesus name we pray. Amen.  

Reflect on these questions:
1. What are those things that you have been worrying recently? Think a bit more. What is it about those issues that make you worried?

2. Recount all the times that Jesus has provided for you in the past. Now, ask Jesus to continue to show himself to you in these things you worry about. Be honest, do you trust he will provide? Why or why not?

3. Don’t worry. Jesus is Lord! How can this message help you to enjoy each day more and have less or even no worry? 

Family Corner:1. When your family experiences stressful situations that cause worrying, do you usually ignore it, strategize ways to solve the problem, or pray into the issue? Or is it a combination of these actions?2. This week, how can you seek the kingdom of God with your family when stressful things happen?

Praise and Thanksgiving
Let's give thanks for God with us. Let us praise Him:

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