Students pray for them…teachers welcome them…parents dread them. I work at an elementary school and the news came out that Easter break will be cut short by a day. I heard kids complaining, saw teachers frowning, and observed some parents giving high-fives. Now, whether they know it or not, this decision was made for their benefit—by forgoing a day off in April to make up a snow day, they will not have to return to school after Memorial Day weekend. When they heard the news, they lived in the moment, just as when the snow day was declared, they lived in the moment.
Thinking about what I observed I naturally thought God would reveal to me something along the lines of “watch out what you ask for” or “enjoy now but wait until you pay for it later.” However, I was reminded that none of that is what Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:34, ““So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today. “
“Worry” is one of the biggest plagues on people today—it robs us of joy and contentment. When we allow it to infest us, it causes serious Physical, Relational, Emotional, Mental, Intellectual, Spiritual, and yes, even Environmental issues. If you want to see “worry” in action just look into the eyes of someone: a family member, a friend, a coworker, a stranger, or you might just need to look into a mirror.
Let’s look back at those who heard about the original snow day:
- Parents: They frantically adjusted schedules and tried to find someone to care for their child—understandably if they were still expected to be at work. They also started worrying if tomorrow would be another snow day and what should they do to prepare. Some started worrying about summer vacation. That snow day and who knows how many others to come would change the school year and totally mess up summer plans!
- Teachers: While possibly relishing the temporary break, they also knew it changed the academic and extra-curricular schedule, so they worried about how they were going to adapt. They too have summer vacation plans, so they took on the same worry as the parents.
- Students: It’s a snow day!!! They lived joyfully in the moment and did not worry about the next day or summer vacation…it was a snow day!!!
Great! We can go about our merry ways today and not worry about the consequences of tomorrow right? Well I think we see God’s plan for that in Proverbs 6:6-8, “Take a lesson from the ants, you lazybones. Learn from their ways and become wise! Though they have no prince or governor or ruler to make them work, they labor hard all summer, gathering food for the winter.”
I believe the point Jesus is making in Matthew 6:34 is that when we rely on ourselves or even other people, we tend to worry about today and tomorrow. When we rely on God, we still must work and prepare but through faith we know He will provide and therefore, we need not worry.