By Kathi Pelton
“Give us today our daily bread…”—Matthew 6:11
Over the past number of months I have had the Holy Spirit speak to me regarding “our daily bread.” His instructions to me were to watch each day for His daily provision. I was not to look at what I needed for tomorrow, but to fix my eyes on the day at hand. I could hope for tomorrow, but not worry about tomorrow. Until I began this exercise I did not realize how much time I had been spending worrying about tomorrow.
“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 important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 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? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?
“And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?
“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. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”—Matthew 6:25-34
Each day I stop and take an evaluation of our daily bread. Does my family have enough food for this day? Is my family clothed today? Is there a shelter for my family today? So far, each day has resulted in a “YES” as the answer for each question. I’m sure that if you asked our teenagers (or even me at times) they might add, “Yes, but…” because they might want more clothes, or food that was bought from a restaurant, or a house with a built-in pool—but our desires don’t change the fact that we have our daily bread.
Desires aren’t bad, God loves our dreams and desires, but He is breaking the patterns of “worrying” in His people’s lives. He is teaching us to be thankful for having our daily needs met. It has been a wonderful experience these past couple of months as I have begun to be truly thankful for our daily provision. Actually, as I have done this, I have realized how much we really do have.
I get to take a hot shower every day. I have comfortable furniture to sit upon each day. I have lights to keep us out of darkness. I have vehicles to take me where I need to go, grocery stores close by to shop for food (I don’t have to “till the ground” and grow my daily bread)…and so much more. Do we have needs? Sure, but that’s where God comes in and takes the burden of our needs upon Himself.
Fear Produces Worry
Last month I wrote an article called, Removing Roots of Fear, which addressed how to break through the different ways fear manifests in our lives. Worry is a fruit of fear, and a bad fruit at that! I want only good fruit in my life. As Matthew 6 states, worry not only doesn’t add a single hour to our life, it steals many hours from our lives. For every hour we spend worrying, is an hour we have lost living in the joy of our salvation. Do we really question whether or not we are more important than the birds of the air to our Heavenly Father?
If the Bible says it, then it’s true and we can confidently believe it. It is not assumption or false hope; it is absolute truth. We can confidently declare over our lives that “I am very important and loved by God and I will be provided for!”
In Matthew 6 we are instructed to “seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness”…then all our daily needs will be added to us. This is one thing that our enemy does not want us doing. Satan is always trying to keep God’s people distracted by worry and unbelief about our “daily bread” so that God’s Kingdom and righteousness is not what is manifesting in our lives and in the earth. It is vital that we learn to truly trust Jesus’ faithfulness, and obey Him when He says, “Don’t worry.”
Obedience is Righteousness
“And if we are careful to obey all this law before the LORD our God, as He has commanded us, that will be our righteousness.”—Deuteronomy 6:25
The other day a friend sent me a video of a Labrador Retriever who has won numerous awards for his retrieving ability, not because he is the fastest retriever but because he is the “most obedient.” This dog is owned by an avid hunter who is also a Believer. When his owner speaks, this dog listens and obeys. In the video, the owner of this dog tells how he never has him on a leash because he doesn’t worry about the dog running off or leaving his protective eye. According to Deuteronomy 6:25, if this dog was human and a Believer, we would say that this is one righteous dog.
It is not God’s desire to keep His people on a short leash or behind a protective fence, but in His kindness He does not want us to be harmed so He keeps us hidden or restrained until we learn obedience (which will be our righteousness).
Our family has two dogs, a Chocolate Lab and a Shi-Tzu puppy, and I must admit that neither have been well trained nor are they what I would consider obedient. Because of this, I am careful to keep them behind a fence or within the confines of our house or on a leash when they are walked. When I give them their freedom, they run from my safety and go their own way (which always results in trouble for both them and us). They don’t want to be restrained, but they haven’t been taught obedience, so they must be.
Though I hate to compare us to a dog, in this case it is relevant, because God is teaching His people the importance of obedience so that He can remove the restraints and trust us to walk at His side always listening and obeying.
“Acknowledge and take to heart this day that the LORD is God in Heaven above and on the Earth below. There is no other. Keep His decrees and commands, which I am giving you today, so that it may go well with you and your children after you and that you may live long in the land the LORD your God gives you for all time.”—Deuteronomy 4:39-40
Trust and Obey…There is No Better Way!
The lyrics to the old hymn “Trust and Obey” are a great reminder of the freedom that we are given when we leave behind the burdens and worries of this world and rest in the posture of trusting and obeying. Every parent understands this because it is our greatest joy to see our kids kept safe as they trust and obey both their parents and God. God is no different toward His children…our trust and obedience brings Him great joy. Let’s bring God the joy that He deserves by learning to trust and obey.
When we walk with the Lord
in the light of His Word,
what a glory He sheds on our way!
While we do His good will,
He abides with us still,
and with all who will trust and obey.
Trust and obey, for there’s no other way
to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.
Not a burden we bear,
not a sorrow we share,
but our toil He doth richly repay;
not a grief or a loss,
not a frown or a cross,
but is blest if we trust and obey.
But we never can prove
the delights of His love
until all on the altar we lay;
for the favor He shows,
for the joy He bestows,
are for them who will trust and obey.
Then in fellowship sweet
we will sit at His feet,
or we’ll walk by His side in the way;
what He says we will do,
where He sends we will go;
never fear, only trust and obey.
Joy in the Journey!
Light Streams Ministries