Summary: We need to learn to trust Jesus in all we do
Worry will be the death of you - if you let it Mt. 10:24-39
Story: A business manager went on holiday to an island in Greece.
One day, while he was on the beach, he was called up on his mobile phone by his secretary, wanting some help.
He gave her some instructions and told her to call him back when she had finished.
As he was pacing up and down waiting for a return phone call, he came across a fisherman, dozing in the shade of his fishing boat, that had been pulled up on the beach.
As the manager passed, the fisherman woke up and the manager decided to talk to him.
“The weather is great and there’s lots of fish.
So how come you are sitting about here - when you could be out there - catching more fish?”
Gently, the fisherman replied: “Because I caught enough this morning”
“But just imagine” the manager replied “if you went out twice a day, you could bring home twice as much fish.
And do you know what could happen?
Puzzled, the fisherman shook his head.
“Well” the manager continued - waxing lyrical to his theme “you could buy yourself a motorboat.
And then, after say a couple of years you could buy a second one.
Then perhaps after three years you could have a cutter or two.
And just think, one day you might be able to buy a freezing plant.
Then you could go on to get your own helicopter to help you trace shoals of fish for your fishing fleet.
You could then buy your own truck to ship the fish to the capital thereby cutting out the middle man”
“And then what” the fisherman replied.
“And then “the manager concluded triumphantly “you wouldn’t have to worry.
You could then sit down calmly on the beach, dozing in the sun and looking at the beautiful ocean.”
“ Well, what do you think I am doing now!” the fisherman replied.
We all worry at some time or other, often about money and the future.
Jesus, in our Gospel reading, sent his disciples out to preach the Good News that the Kingdom of God is near (Mt. 10:7).
We also call it the Great Commission
He recognised that preaching the Gospel would result in conflict.
There would be those who would accept their word and there would be those who would not accept their word.
And Jesus realised that when the disciples ran into inevitable opposition, they would be afraid.
He realised that they would worry.
And so Jesus said to his disciples : “Do not fear….” (Mt. 10:31), because God is interested in the smallest details of your life and won’t let you down.
In Jesus’ day, there was a real danger of being killed for preaching the Good News of the Kingdom of God.
1st Century Palestine was seething with unrest - under the yoke of Roman rule.
And anyone who threatened the delicate status quo ran a serious risk of being put to death.
And as we all know - Jesus himself was crucified for his radical message.
Christ called his disciples to preach the Gospel with boldness and not to be afraid.
And to rely on God for their protection.
And he calls us too - to serve God by preaching the Gospel.
And therefore to rely on God for our security.
Story: The other day I was reading a book by Robert Maasbach called “with Christ at the Throne of God”
At the time I was being tempted to worry about church.
And then I read this passage - that hit me between the eyes.
Robert wrote this:
“Many years ago, when I was pressed beyond measure and could not bear it any longer I cried out “Help me Jesus! You must give me someone to stand with me. I am all alone.” The Lord spoke to me and said ”until you learn to stand alone with me, I cannot add anyone to you.” I shouted in praise “Jesus, You are more than enough for me” He said to me “Son , this battle is not yours, it is mine, I am with you.”
Robert went on to comment:
“This is the grace of God in Christ Jesus – nothing or no one can separate you from His love. He is always with you to help you and bring you through whatever you are going through. (“with Christ at the Throne of God” Robert Maasbach p 22. )
In England, we are most unlikely to face death for being a follower of Christ.
Story: But that hasn’t always been the case.
Nearly 460 years ago, Archbishop Thomas Cranmer, the founder of the Anglican Church was burnt at the stake on 21st March 1556 in Oxford for the sake of the Gospel.