“Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?”
My heart was pumping fast. My left arm was going numb. I was dizzy, on the verge of blacking out as I was driving down the high way. My mom forced me to pull over to get out of the car and to lay down on a bench that was close to side walk after we parked. What was going on? Why did I feel like I was about to die? As my skin turned white and as I was shaking a lot and could barely breathe I was experiencing my first ever panic/anxiety attack. This was three and a half years go and there have been more since. I hate the feeling, and even with the risk of seeming over dramatic it literally felt like I was going to die! Have you ever experienced this? Have you ever felt when your body goes numb and everything is completely out of control, almost suffocating? If you have you’re not alone. I am with you.
Now, while not everyone has experienced a physical panic attack, we all experience when panic ATTACKS! These are moments when you are feeling attacked by matters you have stressed about often, and that are quite possibly and almost always completely out of your control. You know exactly what I am talking about now. Financially your money is looking really tight and you are wondering exactly how you will pay the bills: Panic ATTACKS. Your career goals are falling short and you’re not where you thought you would be at this point and time in your life: Panic-ATTACKS. The relationship you are in is filling a void because you always need to have someone by your side, however you are fighting the gut feeling that he is probably not the person you need to be with: Panic ATTACKS. Maybe your peers are pressuring you to make a decision that could have long lasting consequences, and you being a conscientious person, you think and think and think and with the fear of disappointing them, you beat yourself mentally: Panic ATTACKS. I could go all day on this! The reality is, panic is coming because we are human beings that feel we need to control things, think we can manipulate other people’s feelings in our minds to make us feel better, and believe somehow the weight of the world is on our shoulders.
Jesus being the greatest teacher to ever live, our Lord and our ultimate sustainer of life commands (not suggests) us not to worry in Matthew 6. Jesus knows what it is like to be human, meaning he can relate to our impulses and has been on our level because even though He is God “he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being” Philippians 2:7. But even though Jesus was a human, he never worried. NEVER! Praise Him for being Jesus and our ultimate example! So when panic ATTACKS we can trust Jesus’ words in Matthew 6:26-27! “Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?”
There are three things we can ponder out of this passage that can help us when panic ATTACKS!
- Creation: He gives us an action to “Look at the birds!” Even such creation as little fragile birds get provision. They don’t have a savings account or dreams of becoming something of themselves. They are birds! They will always fly, eat, nest, and repeat, every day! God knows that’s all that will become of birds, yet he still provides for them.
- Consider your value: He gives us this amazing complete truth to consider as humans: Your Value AS a human is an Image bearer of the one true king! “And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?” Humans among all other creation are uniquely made in God’s image. We are eternal beings and God loves us more than any other created being. We are as Jesus says “MORE” valuable than anything else in creation. There is a volume of love that God has for us that nothing else gets!
- Don’t waste your time on things out of your control: Jesus speaks to our time management when he says “Can all of your worries add a single moment to your life?” The answer is an awe-striking NO! I have often heard that the average human being wastes 6.5 years of their lives on worry. Now how someone can measure that, I have no clue but I can believe it! Worry is a complete waste of time and energy. But let’s face it, it’s easier to worry than to trust. Worry is not what we should use to deal with life’s problems; worry doesn’t solve anything. But Jesus gives all hope and peace!
When panic ATTACKS, ponder creation. When panic ATTACKS, consider the volume of your value! It is MORE! When panic ATTACKS, don’t waste any moment on worry, because studies apparently show and Jesus’ words bluntly say: it takes away from your life, it doesn’t add any wonder to your life.