"Therefore do not worry, saying 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear?'  For it is the Gentiles who strive for all these things; and indeed your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.  But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well."  Matthew 6:31-33

Our culture has set us up for worrying.  Do we look young enough?  Do we have enough protection in our homes, at work, in our car?  Do we have enough things?  This is the thing about Jesus' words today.  They bring us in direct conflict with the culture.  Don't worry about any of these things.  What we really need to worry about is the kingdom of God. 

Well, what is the kingdom of God?  In South Sudan the children and women were always singing.  The picture above is of Maura sweeping and as she swept there was always a song being sung.  Whether it was Araboya Jesu (Thank you Jesus) or something else singing was always a part of her work.  It was not worrisome work either.  Hurry and get this done so that you can get to the next thing on the list was not evident in her work.  It was always slow and careful.  Sweeping also involved tooth brushing with a stick.  Which means there were times when you halted all you were doing to push the stick along another line of your teeth and to chew on it. 

Now there is much that this young mother of two should have to worry about.  What does her family have to eat?  Who is taking care of the children while she is there in the compound?  Did they get to school safely?  Will there be yet another war?  Yet it seemed as if she worried about nothing except taking care of us all during the day. 

In our anxiety ridden society which seems to worry about so much, and so many of these things seem trivial in relation to our brothers and sisters a world away, Jesus' words should hit home.  We are supposed to be a counter cultural movement and we seem to forget this.  May we be able today to turn our worries and cares away and concentrate on kingdom things.  Things which will have us singing and working towards God's kingdom.  It will enrich the soil of our lives.