January 8, 2018 Luke 12:22-34
CONSIDER THE RAVENS AND LILIES
MEDITATION: “Don’t worry,” Jesus tells us. “Don’t worry about your life. Don’t worry about what you will eat or how you will clothe yourself.” It would be easy to trivialize this message, especially for those of us who have never had to worry about where our next meal will come from or whether we will be able to afford adequate clothing. It would be equally easy to assume Jesus is advocating a simplistic attitude of passive acceptance, urging us to submit to whatever situation life hands us. Yet the examples Jesus points to in the natural world suggest this is not quite what he has in mind. While the lilies and ravens are provided for, it’s not as though they don’t have to put forth any work or exert any effort. They do. Flight and photosynthesis require energy! But these birds and flowers act out of their created identities not worrying about being something they’re not, or doing something they weren’t meant to do. They are not overcome with anxiety over that which they cannot change. Jesus similarly challenges us orient our hearts towards God’s kingdom and to embrace our divinely appointed identities.
FOR DISCUSSION: What are the sources of worry or anxiety in your life, and how does recognizing your true identity as a beloved child of God help you discern which of these concerns are rooted in a false concept of who you are?
LINKS/OTHER RESOURCES: Mumford and Sons is a band that makes use of a lot of religious and biblical imagery. Listen to their song “Awake My Soul” and consider its relationship to this passage.