No one, not even the enemies of Jesus, ever accused him of being a coward or being full of doubts. He was always persistent and knew where he was going. In every situation, he was the master of himself. He had perfect poise and confidence. Jesus spent a lot of his time trying to instill within people this faith that sends them out into the dark night, trusting in God.
Whatever else we may say about Jesus, we must conclude that he had gigantic faith in God’s goodness and wisdom. His illustrations were taken from the common experiences of life.
Therefore, we can assume that Jesus did not mean that it is unnecessary to make reasonable plans for the future. Once, Jesus talked about building a tower. First, he said, a man who intends to build a tower will sit down and count the cost. He will want to determine whether he has enough material to finish it.
Jesus planned for the future. He gathered around him 12 disciples and taught them how to live. He made every effort to prepare them for the experience of the cross upon which he would die. He tried to explain to them that he would be despised and rejected. During these three years of his public ministry, He was laying the foundation stone of the Christian Church.
Worry is useless energy, expended with no positive results. Have you ever solved a problem through worry? It will result in ulcers and poor health. I decided a long time ago never to worry about something I could not change. If I find something which is beyond my control, I commit it to God and leave it there.
Sir William Ostler, one of the famous physicians who founded the Johns Hopkins University, tells us about a time when he was worried sick. He worried about an examination that was scheduled the following day, and, in general, worried about the future. He was reading and came across this line: “Our main business is not to see what lies dimly at a distance, but to do what lies clearly at hand.” This sentence probably saved this great man from defeat.
When Dr. Ostler went back to his native England to be knighted by the King, he said, “... more than anything else, I owe whatever success I have had to the power of settling down to the day’s work, and trying to do it to the best of my ability, and letting the future take care of itself.”
This is the philosophy of living one day at a time. Blessed is the man who waits until tomorrow to do the work tomorrow demands. This is what Jesus was saying to us. Don’t confuse today’s work with what you need to do tomorrow. Jesus said, “One day’s trouble is enough for one day.”
Remember, the troubles of today will pass away. Isn’t it marvelous to know that God provides a way for the wounds of sorrow to heal. The things that hurt us yesterday may leave a scar, but God takes away the pain.
The master was reminding us that today is ours. We may not have a tomorrow, but we have this day. Let us live it to the fullest.
Robert V. Ozment is a retired United Methodist minister.