“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?
and one of them shall not fall to the ground
without your Father.”
Two of the more common ideas that run through people’s minds when tragedy strikes are; 1. What did I do wrong to deserve this? 2. Does God really care for me?
Some people get the notion that God immediately makes people suffer when they step out of line with His will. Other people wonder where God is when tragedy strikes. Two opposite reactions but both are common.
Recently I was seeking to help a family where one of the children was diagnosed with cancer. The young person was fearful and wondered what they had done wrong that God sent along cancer as punishment. Another family member in this situation wondered where God was just when He was needed. So one thought God was there and the other was thinking God had left them just when He was needed most.
Well, both reactions cannot be right. Either God is there or He is not. What do we make of such a situation? How are we to respond to these ideas about tragedy and the place of God in it all?
Well, we cannot determine all the answers to our questions, especially at such an emotional time as learning about a difficult medical issue. If possible we need to come at the matter bit by bit through identifying things we do know for certain.
Well, what do we know for sure as we try to work our way through such turmoil in our lives? Jesus gives us one answer in our verse for today. We are first to understand that even when such a comparatively insignificant creature as a bird falls from a tree God is there and pays attention to the event. God sees sparrows, the least of birds, fall from the tree. Jesus then says, “So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” Matthew 10:31 (NIV)
In the same context Jesus says that God is so attentive to the detail concerning us that He knows how many hairs we have on our heads. We may think that Jesus is using hyperbole, that is exaggerating to make a point, but most of us accept the idea that God’s knowledge of us even extends to such a minute detail. No, we cannot say that God does not attend us in our trials of life. God most certainly does notice and He does care very much.
A truly remarkable illustration of how our Creator tends to the smallest detail of our lives can be seen in John 13 where it is recorded that Jesus washed the disciples’ feet as was the custom. Servants were usually the members of a household in Jesus’ day who performed this humble task. But Jesus served such a small need for His followers just prior to the cross where He would die for their eternal salvation which was their greatest need.
Whatever your issue, however burdened in life you happen to be, look at the smallest of birds and realise that your Father in heaven not only sees them but is attentive to them. Then believe Jesus when He says that the Father is much more attentive to you. Come to this wonderful God and pour out your heart to Him concerning your issues and you will find a ready ear to listen.