Pleasing God, Making Disciples of Jesus Christ

Vanity, Vanity, All Is Vanity

MATTHEW 6:25-27; 33-34 – “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?  But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”


THEME OF THE DAY:  VANITY, VANITY, ALL IS VANITY.  I am sure many of us reading the theme of today’s nugget immediately thought of King Solomon and his Old Testament book Ecclesiastes.  Good and right thought.  The words “vanity” and “vanities” appear 32 times in 27 verses in Ecclesiastes.  The emphasis Solomon places on us with these words is the foolish futility of seeking the pleasures of the world, the achievements of the world, and attainments of the world to provide what only comes from God – purpose, satisfaction, and contentment.  Truly, the king is right, “Vanity, vanity, all is vanity” but his words apply to today’s scripture as well.


Jesus gives a clear command “don’t be anxious” and if we read the entire section beginning in Matthew 6:25 and concluding in verse 34 we will find the command is repeated three times. Such repetition demands our attention. Our Lord knows the damage anxiety does in a child of His given over to allowing it to control their lives.


First anxiety drains a person of emotional, spiritual, and physical strength to live the only day we have – today.  And if we allow this, we lose the joy of the Lord, the peace of the Lord, and the vitality of walking with the Lord.  Soon discouragement, even depression and despair, settle into the heart of the Christian and the spiritual life comes to a stop.  All we have is a profession of faith in Christ that lacks the biblical realities of Christ within the heart.


Another damaging thing occurs in persons controlled by worry and anxiety. Their relationships suffer.  Think about it.  What makes for quality, Christ-honoring relationships?  Communication focused on the interests of others and a genuine love that promotes and encourages others.  How refreshing to be Philemon-like in all our relationships – For I have derived much joy and comfort from your love, my brother, because the hearts of the saints have been refreshed through you (Philemon 7).  Yet, worry and anxiety prevent that because the worrying and anxious-filled person is filled with self-interests.  Everything centers on the worrywart.  Selfishness abounds in the anxious-filled person, leaving no room to build relationships that are healthy by denying self, not focusing on self.


Vanity, vanity, all is vanity.  Not just in the things and pursuits in the world, but also in being anxious over the things and cares in the world.


PRAYER: “Father, forgive me for allowing worry to quench my faith, to blind me to Your promises.”


QUOTE: “Worry only drains us of the strength and focus to fight the good fight of faith right now.”


In the affection of Christ Jesus,


Pastor Jim