“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear…Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?”
How much do you know about ostriches? A little bit of reading will tell you that the average ostrich lives between 30-40 years and eats about 8 pounds of food a day. Roots, leaves, reptiles, pebbles…yep, ostriches eat all of those things. If you do the math, over the course of a lifetime, an ostrich will eat between 43-58 tons of food. And that’s just one bird! That doesn’t include the other 8.5 million estimated ostriches worldwide or the other estimated 200-400 billion birds on this planet! Could you imagine trying to feed and care for all of these birds?
I doubt that you are very concerned about an ostrich’s diet or about feeding all the world’s birds. After all, you have enough worries of your own—school, health, your family, your relationships, your future. Are you keeping up in school and getting the grades you want? Do you have your college plans and future career all figured out? How are you getting along with your family? Are you dating someone? What if it doesn’t work out? What if you have no one to date? What if someone in your life gets really sick? What if you get really sick?
There’s so much to worry about in life and worrying can consume a lot of time and energy. Not only that, but worrying is a symptom of a bigger problem. We try to do too much on our own. We think we can handle life by ourselves. And it doesn’t take long before we realize that we can’t.
Jesus has just the cure for your worries. Pay more attention to ostriches! He doesn’t actually say that, but he does say, “Look at the birds.” The 200-400 billion birds in this world don’t have pantries or refrigerators to store up food for tomorrow. They don’t know where their next meal is coming from and yet God provides for them each and every day. Jesus then asks, “Are you not much more valuable than they?”
Do you understand what he’s asking? Jesus wants you to know that you are more valuable to him than a flock of birds. And if he takes great care of birds, then he will take greater care of you. He didn’t leave heaven and come to earth for the ostrich. He didn’t walk sinlessly in this world for the hummingbird. He didn’t die and rise and return to heaven to prepare a place for the cardinal. He did all that for you!
So, do not worry about your life! Let Jesus handle the worries. Instead, look to him and listen to him. You are valuable to him.
Jesus, take away my worries. Help me to seek first your kingdom and righteousness and to trust that you will take care of everything else as well. Amen.