“I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears.” – Psalm 34:4
Some of us are anxious by nature but then suddenly we are caught up in a national panic by an invisible enemy that has the ability to destroy us. Everything around us seems to be crumbling. New anxieties about the economy, our job, our nest egg, our future, and health are the byproducts of COVID-19. And then to top it off, we have to worry about having enough Charmin. So what does Jesus say to us in a temporarily upside-down world filled with so much anxiety?
God guarantees you mercy today for trouble today, and mercy tomorrow for trouble tomorrow. Jesus says in Matthew 6: 34, “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.” These words from Jesus are life-changing if we will grasp them, and live by them. Not one of us knows what the news is going to be tomorrow or the next day. No one. And not knowing what will happen tomorrow causes fear and anxiety, especially if we believe that things will only get worse.
The reality is we are already weighed down with enough worry today, without worrying about the possibilities of tomorrow. But there is the dilemma: the mercies God gives today are not designed to carry the burdens that may come tomorrow. God’s mercies today are designed to carry our troubles today. And when tomorrow comes, if new trouble comes, new mercy will come with it. That’s the promise of God.
Look at 1 Samuel 7: 12: “Samuel then took a large stone and placed it between the towns of Mizpah and Jeshanah. He named it Ebenezer (which means “the stone of help”), for he said, “Up to this point the Lord has helped us!” The God who had delivered God’s people in the past is the same God who will help in the future. We need to remember God’s faithfulness and be encouraged to know that He will be faithful today and in the future. In the midst of our worries, we would do well to take stock of the Lord’s blessings in our lives “up to this point.”
We can find great encouragement and optimism, recalling the words of Jesus: “…Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) The God who has delivered you “up to this point” won’t quit now. God knows what we need and is waiting on us tomorrow.
I don’t know what tomorrow holds in my life, in your life, or in this world. But I do know this: tomorrow’s mercy from God will be sufficient for tomorrow’s trouble in this world. Therefore, you and I have no reason to worry about what tomorrow holds. When we get there, new mercy will be waiting for us.
- When you face a worrying situation, do you tend to take action or to be more passive? What are some advantages and disadvantages to the way you respond to worry?
- What are some of the costs of spending your time and energy worrying about those things?
- Are you worried about COVID-19? What can you do this week to declare your trust in God, relabel your worry as “tomorrow,” and participate in what God is doing today?