Placing One’s Trust and Confidence in God in Every Area of Life
Text: Matthew 6:27-34
From Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount
Other Scriptures of Encouragement: Isaiah 40:31; The book of Jonah; Philippians 4:6-9; Genesis 16; Jeremiah 29:11; Psalm 127:1; Matthew 6:27-34 (KJV)
27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? 28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: 29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is , and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? 31 Therefore take no thought , saying , What shall we eat ? or, What shall we drink ? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed ? 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. 34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
Part of The Lord’s Sermon on the Mount, Jesus points us to some key principles about placing our trust and confidence in God. The anxious thoughts of the ‘worry wart’ can cripple the process of peace, blessings, favor, and rest in God.
What a troubling thing it is to see people spend so much of their time planning for tomorrow, that they forget to live in the moments of today (hitting all of the 300 meter targets, yet missing every 50 meter target on the range). Sometimes, the things that are right in front of us are the easiest details to miss.
Oftentimes in our pursuit of provisions (food, clothing, shelter), we take the do-it-yourself approach. I sat up one night watching a bunch of old videos of “The Cosby Show”, a show I was fortunate to grow up watching as a kid in the 1980s (for reference, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Cosby_Show). One particular episode relates a story of Theodore (Theo) Huxtable, who was trying to impress his girlfriend with a ‘Gordon Gartrelle shirt’. He spent a lot of money on the shirt, but his father would not let him keep it, telling him that the shirt would have to be returned. Theo’s sister, Denise, comes to the rescue by telling him she could make him a shirt just like the ‘Gordon Gartrelle’. As we know from the show, the resulting shirt – a result of his sister’s do-it-yourself project mind you – was by no means anything close to the expensive shirt Theo originally purchased. But after all the anger subsided, Theo’s friends actually liked the shirt, and it instantly boosted his “cool credentials”. It is important to note that every do-it-yourself project won’t always have a happy ending like Theodore Huxtable’s Gordon Gartrelle story did. So my encouragement for you is to Let God Do It.
‘Let[ting] God Do It’ in it’s simplest form means following the leading, guiding, and direction of The Lord in every area of life, and seeking to do things HIS WAY.
Isaiah 40:31 says “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”
Those who do things God’s way reap the benefits of more energy. Bishop George Henfield, who many years ago taught me a lot of things about ministry, used to say it something like this: “When it’s YOUR idea, you have to work it out. But when it’s GOD’s idea, God will work it out”. So again, my encouragement for you is Let God Do It. God is much better at it than we are.
I want to commend you for your extreme focus on excellence, on doing all to the best of your abilities, on being mentioned by name as a master at your craft. But…
What does it mean to Let God Do It? A big part of it is:
– Practice your skills, but rely on God to make the performance of those skills go well.
– Be wise stewards of your finances, but rely on God for your provisions.
– Do what is necessary to ensure your earthly requests meet the standard for submission, but rely on God to make a way.
Conditions that may cause a person to do things on his/her own:
– Lack of / or Loss of confidence in others
** Men have this THING about us, where we mostly want to be in control of the outcome of the situation:
– The Captains of the ship
– The Masters of our fates
– The Lords of all we survey
But I still encourage you today to Let God Do It!
Jonah found out the hard way what not ‘letting God do it’ can cost. God scheduled a preaching engagement for him in Nineveh, but he disobeyed the call. (See the book of Jonah) Now I can only speak for myself, and for other preachers of the Gospel I surveyed about this subject. Of all the ministers of the Gospel that I asked the question, “What do I do when God schedules a preaching engagement for me?”, they all answered emphatically, “Take it!”
When a pastor invites me to preach, unless I have a prior commitment, or unless I am crawling, broke-down, can’t-move, can’t-talk ill, I usually accept the invitation – even with moments of notice. When this happens, I ask the question, “What would you like for me to talk about?”, to which I sometimes receive a theme of reference, but oftentimes receive words to the effect of “Just share with us whatever The Lord gives you to share”. And unless I am unable to reach a printer, I try to always give a copy of my sermon notes to the set leader of the ministry I am speaking at BEFORE I minister. It is a practice I believe in mostly because it helps to eliminate misunderstanding, and reinforces the truth that there is nothing to hide in preaching, or in the method of delivery.
Jonah took a different approach to the call, however. He disobeyed. Instead of taking the task assigned by God, he fled.
— But Wait a Minute —
Let me just say that Jonah had a valid complaint against Nineveh, for they had afflicted his people for many years. But God had a purpose and a plan for Jonah’s ministry to Nineveh. So regardless of our misgivings about a particular assignment, when God has plans, who are we to go against God?
Jonah found a ship headed to Tarshish, paid his fare, and started on his way. God caused a massive wind to rage, threatening to break up the ship he traveled in. The mariners on the boat were terrified and, after finding out that Jonah (his disobedience to God) was the cause of their plight, were abliged to throw him overboard at his suggestion. A big fish swallowed Jonah, after which he remained in the fish three days and three nights. Jonah prayed to God, was delivered from the mouth of the big fish, and was given a second chance at accepting the preaching engagement God set up for him. After Jonah’s message to Nineveh was delivered, the people repented and were saved from sure calamity. Lives were touched. Jonah was afterward very upset at the results, but God’s will was done.
In this story is a lesson: When you disobey God, you take the pen out of HIS HAND and begin writing your own story (DANGEROUS — as Jonah soon found out) until your ink runs out. So when will YOUR ink run out?
Today, you might be:
– Frustrated because you wouldn’t let God do it,
– Panicked because you wouldn’t seek Him first,
– Worried about the things you shouldn’t be worried about because you wouldn’t turn it over to Him (see Philippians 4:6-9 for encouragement).
All this being said, at some point in the process, at some juncture, at some space in time, true believers will finally have to come to a decision, will finally have to make a choice to Let God Do It.
Sarai had her own plan about how to bring Abram a son (see Genesis 16). God promised Isaac, but Sarai gave her maid Hagar to Abram so he could have a son, and that union brought forth Ishmael. Ishmael grew up and made fun of/mocked Isaac, the one God promised to give. Many people, in the course of waiting for their ‘Isaac’, will make the choice to do things their way and end up with ‘Ishmael’. So the two-part question is do you want what God promised or do you want a situation that would mock the plans and thoughts God has for you? The choice is yours to make.
One might say “You don’t understand. Through multiple phases of testing…and after lengthy rounds of qualifying and quantifying examinations, studies have shown that I’m the best there is around this place to do this task”. But I still say “Let God Do It“.
I still say Let God Do It because He is the best of the best and is best at besting the best of us! God doesn’t just “know” best. God IS best. God’s way is best. God’s plan is blessed. God’s thoughts are best (Jer. 29:11).
As a word to all my Soldier friends, God’s PT scores are best; His OERs and NCOERs are best; He can find all his Night Land Navigation points; and He can even find those proverbial boxes of grid squares and contour lines you were sent looking for as a young Soldier!
God’s Height and Weight measurements are best. God’s board performance is best. God’s periodic evaluation is best. God’s customer service call center is best. God’s evidence collecting skills are best. God’s patrolling procedures are best. God’s PCIs and PCCs are best. God’s EFMB skills are best. God’s in-processing process is best. God’s out-processing process is best. So let God be God of your life. Let God Do It!
Psalm 127:1 says “Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.”
What am I saying to you today?
You might be the master at your craft, you might be the best at doing whatever it is you do, but God is better! Let God Do It!
You might have graduated Cum Laude, Magna Cum Laude, Suma Cum Laude, Go Laude, or Thanks Laude, but GOD……..IS Laude! Let HIM do it!
Truths are timeless. With that in mind, be encouraged by the words of author Jennie Bain Wilson, 1857-1913 Born: 1857, on a Farm Near South Whitley, Indiana. Died: Circa 1913. Afflicted with a spinal condition at age four, Wilson spent her life in a wheel chair. She never attended school, but was educated at home. She is said to have written over 2,200 texts. (information gathered from www.hymnary.org) One of her most noted was titled, “Hold to God’s Unchanging Hand”. The lyrics are below:
Verse1 Time is filled with swift transition,
Naught of earth unmoved can stand,
Build your hopes on things eternal,
Hold to God’s unchanging hand.
Hold to God’s unchanging hand,
Hold to God’s unchanging hand;
Build your hopes on things eternal,
Hold to God’s unchanging hand.
Verse2 Trust in Him who will not leave you,
Whatsoever years may bring,
If by earthly friends forsaken
Still more closely to Him cling. [Refrain]
Verse3 Covet not this world’s vain riches
That so rapidly decay,
Seek to gain the heav’nly treasures,
They will never pass away. [Refrain]
Verse4 When your journey is completed,
If to God you have been true,
Fair and bright the home in glory
Your enraptured soul will view. [Refrain]
Three points to remember:
1. Let God Do It!
2. Let God Do It!!
3. Let God Do It!!!
God bless you today, and every day!
Author, speaker, musician DEREK E. EURALES, Jr., loves to share his faith, motivation, and music. His book, Principles of Christian Living, has become a “must read” for believers of all ages. To order your copy, click here.