Summary: Don't worry, instead seek first the kingdom of God.
DO NOT WORRY
Online Sermon: http://www.mckeesfamily.com/?page_id=3567
Living in a society where time is more precious than either gold or silver, taking time to be holy tends to be one of those commands that is truly forgotten. While most Canadians have their basic needs met most of our society still feel like they live a life of poverty. Until we have acquired what the general populace has we tend to feel like we are destitute and poor. To satisfy the cravings of what our eyes see we borrow vast sums of money so that we can buy the lifestyle that we covet. Ironically, our debts are so vast that rarely do we get time to enjoy the things we have purchased. When God comes knocking at our door and asks us to spend time with Him our response is to give Him a few hours a week and foolishly claim it a living sacrifice unto God. This sermon will explore how much better our walk with God would be if only we would seek first the kingdom of God, stop coveting and leave Him responsible to provide for our basic needs.
To start off this sermon I had two ladies perform what I would like to call the “Frantic Worrier Skit.” They both entered the sanctuary with curlers in their hair and clothing that looked like it was taken right out of the dryer and thrown onto their bodies with little thought. As they enter the sanctuary the song Crazy Frog Axel F played in the background to set the “I am too busy” tone. As both ladies hurried up the aisle they frantically talked about their insane schedules and how they are sinking fast! When they arrive at the front of the church they sat at a table. They were waiting for others to arrive for the church Business meeting. The longer they waited the more they talked about their schedules and the more frantic they became. They got so flustered that they both agreed to skip the church meeting and on the way out the door they justified their leaving by saying that God wanted them to catch up anyways.
WORRYING LEADS AND A FRANTIC LIFE
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?
Matthew 6:25, NIV
While this skit was humorous and very entertaining the main reason for including it in the sermon was to accentuate the point that busyness is often the by-product of fear for one’s very life. Every Christian is painfully aware of the curse “from dust you are, dust you will return” (Genesis 3:19). From the first time one skinned one’s knee, had a tooth fall out, got sick or had to bury a family member; one soon came to realize that God’s curse was not just words but reality. The body is frail and without the necessities of life of food, water, shelter and clothing; we know the it will perish. Abraham Maslov states that until we fully feel like these basic needs are met then every ounce of our effort will be devoted to our physical survival.
The good news is that most people living in Canada have their basic needs met. While there are places such as Chad, Haiti, Liberia, Congo, Sierra Leone, Nigeria and Zimbabwe have poverty levels ranging from 68 to 80% of the population, here in Canada the poverty level is only about 9%. While this number is significant, one must be carful in how one defines poverty. For instance, the poverty threshold for the U.S. for a family of two adults and two children is an annual income of less than $24,339 whereas in India it is $20,000 rupees which is the equivalent of about $400 Canadian dollars. Furthermore, having to dig through the garbage heaps of Calcutta to be fed is certainly different than going to a food bank here in Canada. This country has been truly blessed with social assistance programs that make sure the basic necessities of life are provided to the populace.
So, does this mean that Jesus’ command to not worry about the necessitates of life does not relate to Canadians because they have what they need to survive? Due to our desire to acquire a comparative lifestyle to those around us most people in Canada are swimming in enormous amount of debt. The average Canadian has about $21,348 in debt. Each family has a 165 % debt to income ratio. This has put incredible pressure on the family unit to have both spouses working full time. The number of dual income families has risen from 38 % in 1976 to 70 % in 2015. Most Canadians literally live from one paycheck to the next! Canadians still worry about the basic necessities of life because they know if one person in the household should lose their job for any length of time, their pyramid of debt would come crashing down around them making buying food and clothing extremely difficult.