“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” – Luke 12:25
Imagine this, four friends are flying together in a small single-engine plane headed on a weekend fishing trip. Suddenly, about half way to their destination the engine sputters and dies. After several failed attempts to restart the engine the pilot reaches under his seat and retrieves the plane’s one-and-only parachute which he then straps on. As he is pushing the door open to bail out he turns to his friends and announces, “You fellows stay here, I’m going to see if I can get some help.”
“I’ve had a lot of worries in my life,” Mark Twain once said, “most of which never happened.” Or as someone once put it, “Don’t tell me worrying doesn’t work. Everything I worry about never happens.”
My college years occurred during the very height of the Vietnam War, so except for college deferments which inevitably ended upon graduation young men my age faced a high probability of being drafted into the military — or such was the conventional fear. For those of us who got caught up in such beliefs it felt as if death had a noose around our necks. Worry!! And all that worry ever did for me was to change me, for a time, from being an excellent student with high ambitions to a fatalistic mediocre one — but only for a time. Eventually I did serve in the military, I’m proud to say, and lived to tell about it. And eventually my ambitions returned, most of which have come to fruition plus some. Most of the things I worried about never happened. And the time I spent worrying, all that did was to set me back from pursuing my ambitions.
“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” What about those three fishing buddies abandoned by their pilot friend (friend?!!)? What about me back in my college days? And what about you? How has worrying added to your life? How has it added to the quality of your life? How much of what you have worried about has ever even happened? “Do not be afraid, little flock,” Jesus assures us, “for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom.” What more can we ask for than that? And with that as a promise, what are we so worried about?