The Sufficiency of Daily Grace

Author: Bill Elliff

Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow,
for tomorrow will care for itself.
Each day has enough trouble of its own.

(Matthew 6:34)
Most of my trouble is tomorrow.

  • I don’t have enough money tomorrow.
  • I have to have a tough conversation tomorrow.
  • I’ve got too much to do tomorrow.
  • I don’t know if I have what it takes for tomorrow.
  • Things could go really bad tomorrow.
  • What will people think of me tomorrow?

I wallowed in worry recently. Like a heavy comforter, I pulled it up to my chin then right over my head. I don’t know why, but it was just there and oppressive. Heavy days and sleepless nights spun me in a downward spiral and I just couldn’t pull out. I tried to put on a nice face, but nothing was right.

Random personal and family problems nipped at my heels. The “what ifs” of work and ministry burdened my soul. The weight of responsibilities seemed unfairly disproportionate to my strength. Nothing, and I mean nothing, seemed good.

I was angry and short with my family. Usually fairly content, I was upset with God about all the ways I felt He was not coming through on my behalf. Nothing seemed to satisfy me. I looked for comfort in people, things, mindless entertainment. Everything was tasteless. And I felt very, very, very tired.

Future worry is overwhelming. There’s a reason. We don’t have grace today for tomorrow. One of Satan’s simplest tricks and most effective devices is to draw our attention to things we can do nothing about. There’s nothing worse than a crisis that can’t be fixed. If our hours are spent with thoughts of tomorrow’s problems, which are not accessible today and which we know we cannot touch with today’s resources, we are doomed to worry. And worry wears us out.

Jesus lived in daily grace. He moved with an effortless contentment in the hour. His one preoccupation was to listen to the Father and do what He initiated at the moment. There was sufficient grace for today. And in quiet trust He believed there would be ample grace for the future.

That’s why a “Give us this day our daily bread” prayer was enough for Him and great instruction for us. Were there massive responsibilities, overwhelming odds, and great enemies ahead? Seemingly impossible tasks to accomplish with too little time? Nothing more than the salvation of the world, the complete development of the church, and the direct onslaughts of the greatest evil in eternity! But in light of it all there was uncanny serenity in His daily movements. The contrast to everyone else’s life intrigued his friends and unnerved his enemies.

Jesus lived in the sufficiency of daily grace.

Our calling is today. It’s not that we don’t think of tomorrow, but it must consistently be filed under “future grace.” The tide of confidence in God’s sufficiency must wash out worry. In fact, it’s a command. “Do not be anxious for tomorrow.” To go there is to disobey a directive from the One who holds every moment in His hand.

Live in the sufficiency of daily grace.

You need the rest and the world needs the testimony.

Copyright © 2006 Bill Elliff.
Permission granted for reproduction in exact form. All other uses require written permission.
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