The verse we will consider today is Matthew 6:34.
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
This verse is a concluding verse on the subject of worry, which Jesus has been preaching on from the preceding 14 verses (vv. 19-33); hence, He uses the word “therefore” to begin the verse. The verse also extends the teaching. D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, whom I have been following, says this: “[Jesus adds] an extension of His teaching…In adding this [verse] He carried the teaching [about worry] one step further.”
Here we see that Jesus personalizes worry. In effect, worry seems to have its own power. I would say that worry teams up with the demonic; the demons mean to use worry to overpower us and defeat us. Almost all of us are familiar with what worry does to us. It argues with us and tries to convince us to overthink things, to over-plan for tomorrow. And it has a very active imagination, and it will come up with all kinds of possibilities—things that could happen, troubles! I am a house painter. And when I have a job coming up that I think will be difficult, I tend to want to sit and plan it all out. Some of that wise—I’m not against planning—but when it keeps me up half the night, its not good. I really don’t need that much thought on all the potential problems.
Jesus here tells us that worrying about the future is futile and achieves nothing. It is pointless because we can’t do anything about it until we get there. We are to live one day at a time, dealing only with the worries of the day—the present. But when we stack onto our present worries tomorrows worries, we are overburdening ourselves for that day; we are lessening our efficiency for that day.
We could look at it this way. God has given us twelve hours in each day. In order to be efficient in doing the tasks for that day, we must learn to concentrate most on that one day, blocking out the past and also the possible future. Oh, I know that it is wise to do some planning and reflecting. But when we have finished doing that—and it shouldn’t take that much time—we must move on and concentrate on the now. And one reason why we should do that is because thoughts on the past and the future are not always reliable. I think it is better to take things (problems) to God in prayer as they arise. It is better to live adventurously, and in faith and obedience.
We should say to ourselves, “Here is a day which is going to bring me a few problems; I will need God’s grace and help along the way.” And we could claim certain promises, like 1 Corinthians10:13:
No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it.
In conclusion, here are one or two thoughts:
Know that worry is always a failure to grasp and apply our faith. We apply it by learning to talk to ourselves and to convince ourselves to live by faith. We could say to ourselves with the Psalmist, “Why are thou cast down, O my soul? Hope in God…” (Ps. 43:5).
Then refuse any anxious thoughts. Faith in God is refusing to think about worrisome things and to set our mind toward God and trust in Him for today.