If I’ve learned anything from working in the grocery industry it’s that sometimes you have good days and sometimes you don’t. I mean, last Friday the workload wasn’t crazy, the team was on the ball, and we had most of the day’s responsibilities knocked out by early afternoon. And then this past Sunday, in the last half hour of my shift, four different things needed doing right away, all of which were important and of which I had time to do maybe two. It was overwhelming knowing that whatever I decided to go with was probably the wrong thing if only because it left something else undone. There can be so much to sometimes that you can’t possibly do it all and so you have to learn to prioritise. And again, sometimes you get it right and sometimes you don’t. Often there really is no right answer because everything is a priority.
Life can feel like that, too. You have all this stuff to do and only so much time in the day in which to get it done. And that’s true regardless of what job you work or whether you work at all. Responsibilities just don’t go away. You have to eat, you have bills to pay, you need gas for your car if you have one, maybe you’ve got others counting on you to provide… the list goes on. It’s all important and yet it will leave you burnt out and hollow inside if you’re not careful. As one who knows Jesus (I am leery of calling myself a Christian after all that the Religious Right has been up to lately), I take hope from Matthew 6. Starting in verse 25, Jesus says, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” This is the God of the universe saying, “I get it. You have needs and you’re concerned about them. How about letting me worry about them instead? I do it for others and I’m real good at it. You just focus on this.”
I’m not about to offer my take on “seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness.” The term “kingdom of God” is one, I think, with a lot of baggage attached to it right now and that’s a post for another time. All I wanted to do here was show you that you’re not alone. Sometimes in the grocery store all I can do is make the best decision I can and go with it. If everything is a priority then all I can do is pick a place to start. That’s all you can do in life sometimes, too, and that’s OK. Jesus is there to help you with the rest of it. You are not alone.