3/7- 2nd Sunday Matthew 6:24-33
24"No one can serve two masters. 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 both God and Money. 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 important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look 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? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? 28"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30If 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, O you of little faith? 31So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' 32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Thoughts: Our recession teaches us that the master of things is a tough master. This passage warns us of letting the world become our master (money, clothes, food). The world and God should not have equal pull or control of our lives. When we are sick or down, we often worry about things getting worse.
We worry about health care and paying for it (2009 ABC poll found 59% of Americans are worried about healthcare). Ironically, we have the best healthcare in the world. We have access to some of the best trained doctors and pharmaceuticals. Yet the things that drive the healthcare debate are valid concerns- the rising costs and the healthcare; and the needs of the poor who are increasingly left out because of the rising costs. Yet compared to Jesus' day or to 70% of the world today, our poor have better care. We send doctors around the world to help people who cannot have simple operations (like not seeing because of catracts or speaking because of cleft palates). Our rotary club flies children to the United States for life-saving surgery.
Yet, health care should be put in perspective- it will not last. Jesus said "you cannot serve God and money"- or he could have said "You cannot serve God and healthcare." Healthcare is important- Jesus cared for the sick, and we should too. But there is a part of us that lasts forever. After Lazarus was raised from the dead by Jesus, he died again. Our bodies are gifts from God- and this life is a gift from God. But our souls- which can be destroyed by fear and worry are even more important. This passage reminds us that each day has enough trouble of its own, we shouldn’t focus about tomorrow- but on both the problems and joys of today. There is a bit of healing in not worrying.
Prayer: Help me to give my heart fully to you, O Lord. In my time of need, give me an undivided heart that I might fear your name.