Thursday, April 28, 2016

Ham-Stringing - Hand-Wringing

Thursday, April 28, 2016


So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat?  What will we drink?  What will we wear?’  These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.  Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.  “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries.  Today’s trouble is enough for today. 
Matthew 6:31-34(NLT)
Dr. Charles Graham was my Old Testament professor in seminary.  Dr. Graham was always very gracious and interested in helping students.  But in the personality department Dr. Graham was quite serious, hardly ever breaking a smile to ease the tension (particularly when he would give a pop-quiz on Mephibosheth or Lot’s daughters).  When I took my first class with this professor I saw his serious demeanor as austere, no-nonsense, academic dryness; I remember thinking, it’s going to be a long semester.
Somewhere about the third or fourth time the class met everything changed.  Dr. Graham was teaching in Second Kings on the worry of Gehazi, Elisha’s servant.  After recounting how Gehazi was worried about this and that, and how his worry began to get in the way of his service, Dr. Graham abruptly brought in the words of Jesus in this Matthew text about giving worry its walking papers, because it was good for nothing.
In that 50-minute class, Dr. Charles Graham recounted so many personal experiences of times when he had worried throughout his life and ministry as a pastor, the class was over before I knew it. 
As the class period ended, Dr. Graham let out one golden nugget that I have treasured ever since; he said:  Remember, people, if something bad is going to happen, that is a bad event; to worry yourself to death about it is another bad event.  And then, a broad smile emerged from the man I had imagined hadn’t smiled in his entire life, and he continued:  and one bad event is quite enough!
Spoken by a man who obviously had been there, and done that!

For You Today

Got some heavy stuff coming up?  I hear worry won’t hang around somebody who prays
You chew on that as you hit the Rocky Road today…have a blessed day!

[1] Title Image:   Pedro Ribeiro Simões, and Ignas Kukenys from Vilnius, Lithuania, via Wikimedia Commons

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