Elizabeth Chaney wrote a poem in 1859, entitled “Overheard in a garden”.

Said the robin to the sparrow: ‘I should really like to know
Why these anxious human beings Rush about and worry so.’

Said the sparrow to the robin: ‘Friend, I think that it must be
That they have no heavenly Father, Such as cares for you and me

We can learn about God from nature because He is the architect of nature. The creation tells us something about the creator.

Jesus talked about birds. That God feeds them, though they have to collect & eat what He provides. Jesus said, You are more valuable than birds. You are a child of God. How much more will he, therefore, provide for you. So, don't worry about food.

Then Jesus turns to wild flowers. They are more beautiful than any designer suit or dress. Of course, they don't last long! If God clothes these temporary plants with beauty how much more will he clothe his children, Jesus said.

Any parent would wants the best for their children, to feed & clothe them. We are flawed & yet have that instinct to provide. How much more will God provide for us. So, don't worry, says Jesus.

There are three reasons why we shouldn’t worry.

Firstly, worrying is not needed. Verse 32: "Your heavenly Father knows that you need these things".

Or verse 8, your Father knows what you need before you ask him. Worrying is not needed. Not because we don’t have needs, but because the God who made the universe is our personal Father in heaven, who knows what we need, loves us dearly, and is more than capable of taking good care of us.

Second worrying does not help. Verse 27: And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? Worrying doesn’t make things any better. You don’t live longer by worrying. If anything, too much anxiety probably shortens your life expectancy, though it may make life seem longer! Worrying does not help.

Third, worrying is about not trusting. The key to this passage is verse 24, which is not included in today's set gospel which starts with the word "Therefore…" What we are looking at flows from verse 24, where Jesus said, "No one can serve two masters; for a slave will either hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth."

Jesus is saying we have a choice. To trust in wealth, possessions, physical things that we may think we generate ourselves. Things that will devalue, decay, require maintenance, yet these things will tempt us to trust in them. Or do we to trust in God who creates and provides?

Jesus tells us not to worry about food, drink and clothing. If we do we are exposing what we really trust in. Our life should be about living for God and His ways, not chasing after our physical needs.

Jesus words are for all believers all of the time. Not just when people are well off & things are easy. Jesus experienced what it means to be hungry. We will see this in two weeks time when we look at him fasting in the desert Matthew 4.1-11. Jesus knew what it was to be poor, owning few possessions himself and mixing with the poor and disadvantaged.

Of course, there are many Christians starving today, many living through difficult times. What is Jesus calling them to do? He is calling them to live for God. Not merely to seek to survive. There are two ways. To say “I am poor. I live to eat. There is no more to life.” Or to say. “I am poor. God is my Father. I don’t understand why he lets me be so poor, or in difficulties but I am His child, I know He loves me & I will use the strength I do get each day to live for him.”

Jesus is not promising His followers an easy life. The Epistle refers to the sufferings of believers.

How can we overcome anxiety?

Ask God to help. Pray to God. Maybe share your anxieties with another Christian. Ecclesiastes 4.9 Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labour: 10 if either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.

Jesus invented the church so we can help one another in our journey of faith. We can help those who are starving and in trouble, and there are details on the Notice Sheet today of how we can help people in Yemen who are starving at the moment.

Secondly, focus on God, not yourself. Jesus said " your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.34 "So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today's trouble is enough for today."

Someone once wrote "If you seek wealth, you’ll worry about every pound. If you seek health, you’ll fear every blemish and bump. If you seek popularity, you’ll obsess over every conflict. If you seek safety, you’ll jump at every crack of the twig. But if you focus each day on God’s kingdom, ‘He will give you everything you need.’

Don't worry. Trust in God.