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Thoughts and insights from Jubilee Church Wirral

Today’s Mercies for Today’s Troubles

By Yvonne Martin, Life Group leader, Jubilee Church Wirral

As I was reading Helen’s blog recently, I was reminded of something that I’d shared as a video clip during the first lockdown.

 I thought it worth recreating and updating as a blog.

Lamentations 3:21-24. It is the prophet Jeremiah speaking and he says “But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. The Lord is my portion, therefore I will hope in Him.”

“His mercies are new every morning”; got me thinking of a verse in Matthew (6:34) that first struck me 17 years ago. The verse says

“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

17 years ago, I was a new Mum. Despite having done child care courses and nurse training, I didn’t feel like I was doing a very good job of it. I felt very inadequate and anxious about having to care for this baby who struggled to sleep and who had recurring tonsillitis, resulting in a tonsillectomy before his 2nd birthday.

I came across a very helpful sermon that John Piper wrote on this verse and here is a quick summary of what he says it means.

“Our task today, is to live by the mercies given for today and to believe that there will be new mercies for tomorrow. Today’s mercies do not include strength for tomorrow; they include faith that tomorrow’s unseen mercies will be sufficient for tomorrow.

This doesn’t mean – make no preparation for tomorrow’s needs. We have to make wise preparations for things that need doing tomorrow or next week or even next year. Those preparations are part of today’s “sufficient” trouble. BUT, don’t bring the troubles and uncertainties of what you have to do tomorrow, into today. Don’t be anxious about how the thing tomorrow will turn out, don’t stress that you don’t feel strong enough today to do your part tomorrow – that is NOT something God wants you to do today. Those are tomorrow’s burdens.

Don’t cross over from faithful preparation to unfaithful anxiety.”

As is usual with John Piper’s material, you might have to go back and reread that, maybe a few times! Try to let it sink in and identify how you can put it into practice.

There may be massive things that you have to do tomorrow, things of significance that are life changing. There may be mundane things too, but still, they are things that can cause us to worry because we don’t quite know how it’s all going to work out.  Not to mention pandemics and wars and all the uncertainty that brings with it.

Trust Jesus in the big and the small. I know it’s easier said than done. But it’s about faith. Consciously exercise your faith – believe that God is who He says He is and will do what He says He will do.

Let’s try to remember what Jeremiah declared. The Lord’s mercies; that is, His strength, His grace, His sufficiency – is new every morning, for us to face whatever it is we have to face each day. The Lord loves you steadfastly and you can hope in Him.

“And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19

Life Group leader Yvonne Martin of Jubilee Church Wirral

Yvonne Martin of Jubilee Church Wirral

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