27Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither labor nor spin; but I tell you, not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. 28 Now if God so clothes the grass in the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, how much more will He clothe you? ……. 31But seek His kingdom, and these things will be provided to you.
Luke 12:27-28,31 (NASB)
According to Merriam-Webster, to provide means “to make available for use; to supply.” As children we are provided for. We require so much provision. Godly parenting is a sacrificial love because parents must give of themselves to provide. They provide shelter; they provide sustenance; they provide guidance; they provide discipline; and above all, they provide love. As we grow older and seemingly “more mature” we come to believe that we really don’t need all of that provision. Because we are certain that we can do it for ourselves. As I’ve frequently asked myself, “How has that worked out for you??”
But you see, we who have tried so hard and so ineffectively to do it for ourselves have a Father who loves us with the ultimate sacrificial love. Can you imagine that He promised to provide for us? To provide that same sustenance, and guidance, and discipline. And not just to provide a subsistence life, a lesser life. Instead, He has promised to clothe us like the lilies of the field! To provide for us a life eternal with beauty and blessings beyond our wildest imaginations! A life completely surrounded by and devoted to His glory! How often I’ve needed that promise, particularly when in times of stress and strife. How often have I needed to be provided for, when my faith was tested.
Why? Why should He make such a promise to us? Because we deserve it? I think not!! There can be only one answer. It’s an answer we’ve discussed before because it’s the only possible answer for all that He gives us: He provides for us because He loves us.
Note that there is a quid pro quo. We must first seek His kingdom. He sits on the throne of grace that is available to all. But we must seek Him. We must declare not our worthiness, but instead our faith. Imagine: we must choose to be provided for. I choose provision and grace.