“So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:31-33 NIV 1984)

It is the nature of those of us who don’t know God to seek earthly things and be oriented toward them. Whether food, clothing, job, house, or status symbol, when we are pagans (worshippers of created things) these things require both our attention and affection. If we don’t think we have a dad to provide for us, we have to hustle to make sure we are OK on our own. And the things we collect to make sure we are OK become objects of worship, because we begin to measure ourselves by them. They begin to tell us who we are. We trust in things.

Even as Jesus’s followers we can remain in this idolatrous identity crisis. But two words begin to change all that.

“Heavenly Father.”

Relax. Dad sees how precious you are and is able to care for you. He knows your needs already. You were made for something better than chasing material objects and earthly positions, trusting in worldly principles.

You don’t have to get it all right. You don’t even have to fully understand what the kingdom is. Just point it in the right direction. Stir up better desires. Want something more satisfying. Look toward God’s order and what he values. Go after that and you’ll have your needs met without wearing yourself out over them.

Jesus did not say ‘execute perfectly the ten principles of the kingdom.’

He said, “Seek.”

June 22, 2011