|“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, |
for tomorrow will worry about itself.
Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
You’ve no doubt heard the question: “How do you eat an elephant?” And the answer: “One bite at a time.”
I confess that I am a veteran “planner.” I plan everything in order to stave off unwanted surprises or risky situations. God gave me this innate ability to systematically prepare for every contingency.
Yet, I don’t imagine He had in mind giving me this capability of planning in order that I should use it so in lieu of trusting Him. Much of the time He chooses to keep me in the dark about what comes next just for that very reason.
I’m sure that the Israelites would have liked to have known when God was going to lead them on in the wilderness so that they could have prepared meals “on the go.” Instead, He provided only enough manna for one day at a time. It appeared as dew in the morning and quickly evaporated. The people of Israel had to gather it without dawdling and trust God that He would supply the same food every day.
Corrie ten Boom, a Dutch woman whose family hid Jews from the Nazis in their home and who was subsequently imprisoned at Ravensbruck concentration camp, tells the story about a conversation with her father. Corrie had asked her father why God only seems to give them a clear answer to their prayers at the very last minute.
Her father sat down on the edge of the narrow bed and gently began to ask Corrie a question: “When you and I go to Amsterdam—when do I give you your ticket?”
She sniffed a few times before responding with “Why, just before we get on the train.”
Her father then went on, “Exactly. And our wise Father in Heaven knows when we’re going to need things, too. Don’t run out ahead of Him, Corrie. When the time comes that some of us will have to die, you will look into your heart and find the strength you need—just in time.” 1
Whether the situation seems as dire as Corrie’s, or has to do with how you will get everything done for the upcoming wedding, or household move, or the months of chemotherapy ahead, God gives us the same answer: “Trust me and take one thing at a time.”
Certainly the patriarchs listed in Hebrews 11 give us plenty of examples of men and women who trusted in God during impossible situations. As Proverbs 3:5-6 tells us:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your paths.
God comforts us as we begin “eating our elephant” in 1 Peter 5:7:
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
|1 Ten Boom, Corrie, The Hiding Place. Old Tappan, NJ: Spire Books, 1971.|