• Jill Jarrell Newsome

Consider The Ravens

On Groundhog day every year in Pennsylvania they forecast the end of winter. Saturday Phil’s shadow was seen and it was declared that winter will end in six weeks. As always, Phil will never be wrong because somewhere in the world in six weeks it will be warm!


When we lived on the water, most of our living quarters were on the second floor. All of our front windows looked into 100 year old oak trees. I loved feeling like I was in the trees. They were so beautiful and I truly enjoyed them! My kitchen window looked out into the top of a beautiful tree with red berries. That tree held special meaning to my dad and I. Every time I looked at that tree I thought of the verse below.


Matthew 6: 25-27, "Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear.  For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!  Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life.  Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?"


One winter day I was thinking about how ready I was for spring. I wondered how much longer it would feel like winter. I thought about how people get together to see if the groundhog sees his shadow. I had a much better way to tell. I always watched the berries on my tree. Dad and I would know by the number of berries on the tree as to how much longer our winter would be. God would provide the berries for the birds as long as they needed it. It proved true every year as we watched the berries disappear and the buds getting ready to explode with new green leaves! That tree was a daily devotional during the fall, winter and spring as I watched it begin to have red berries, be full with red berries and then watch them disappear. Never any wasted. God gave exactly what was needed!


For me it really put my trust in perspective. Doesn't God give us everything we need? There is no need to worry about things when we know how He takes care of birds! Of course He will take care of us! Psalm 94: 19, "When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy." Philippians 4: 6-7, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."


We should be wise and plan for the future taking steps to provide for ourselves and our families. But Jesus is talking about the kind of anxiety that eats at us and keeps us up at night. The kind of anxiety that robs us of peace and joy. We are gripped by fear over a concern that never even materializes.


We have been told that we can not serve two masters. We also can not be a slave to two masters. We can either be a slave to God and serve Him or a slave to earthly things and serve them. If God is our master, then He is the one who will take care of us. If earthly things are our master then we must rely to them for our future. Here, you may find the cause of your anxiety!

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