We’re busy looking through psalm 23 which is a famous Psalm, and we're still in verse 1! It says, “the Lord is my Shepherd, I have everything I need,” and the point I want to just bring out again today is that because God is our Shepherd we never lack anything! That is such an encouraging thought! God is leading us because he is our best friend; he's looking after us therefore, as Jesus said, we don't have to worry about what we are going to eat or drink, or about our bodies and what we’re going to wear, because we've got a father in heaven who loves us and delights in providing for us! Your Father’s supply is not based on the world's economy, it's based on heaven's economy!
Philippians 4:19 says, “and my God will supply all your need according to his riches in glory.” That is saying that our supply isn't based on what the world's economy is doing, it's based on what heaven's economy is doing, and heaven's economy is always doing well! We've got to realize that God is not “El Cheapo”, he's “El Shaddai” which means, the God of more than enough! He's not stingy, he wants to lavishly provide for you. He wants to look after you so that you can be a blessing to many not just for you to have your needs met! Many people have this mentality of just wanting to have enough so that they can look after themselves and their family. But that is selfish! We should be wanting to have so much money that we can be a blessing to others, so that we can help provide for others! That's God's will for us! God's definition of prosperity is not having enough for you but having enough for you and enough to be able to be a blessing! Generosity is not even defined by what you have. Generosity is about the heart and even giving when you don't have enough; you're giving because you love someone and you want to help them; You’re giving because you love God and you want to see his Kingdom advance, and so you're giving even out of lack sometimes! When we just start to see things differently, see things as God sees them, then our lives will radically change! He's our shepherd; our leader; our caretaker and he has more than enough to look after you! And if you will allow him to bless you, then you will have more than enough to be a blessing to other people!
Psalm 35:27 says, “let them shout for joy and be glad that favor my righteous cause yea let them say continually, let the Lord be magnified which has pleasure in the prosperity of his servants.” God delights in your prosperity! We're not just talking about having stuff here, although it is included, but we are talking about having more than enough so that we can abound to every good work (2 Corinthians 9:8). God wants you to be so blessed that you can be a blessing on every occasion, every opportunity.
It all comes back to relationship with God. I know that some of you, listening to this podcast would be struggling financially right now, and when you’re lacking it's so easy to get self-focused and focusing on the problem and worried about where we are going to get an income from or where is our miracle going to come from, and you're so focused on your situation that you forget that it's so small compared to God! God is bigger than your problems! God is bigger than your financial debt! The provision that was provided for you through Christ far outweighs your debt; far outweighs your lack; far outweighs your need and before you ever had a need God already provided for it. You should not be worried about your finances, but you should be trusting God! There is a place for wise stewardship, and I'm not encouraging people to be reckless with their finances, but what I am saying is that because God is leading you and if you're following his lead, he will never lead you into lack and will always provide for you, even when you make mistakes with your finances!
Matthew 6: 25, “therefore I sound to you, take no thought for your life what you shall eat or what you shall drink, or for your body, what you should put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothes? Behold the birds of the air, they do not Sow nor reap, nor did they gather into barns, and yet your heavenly father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than the birds?” This is saying that we shouldn't be worrying about how our needs are going to be met. You don't see birds worrying. You don't see birds sowing to reap. You don't see birds saving up for a rainy day. And yet your father feeds them – he's your father but he's their creator – you are much more valuable than the birds and so God will look after you!
If your heart is troubled with regards to provision and finances today, for those who are worried about where your next meal is coming from or how you’re going to pay the bills, I want to encourage you to take that burden and give it to Jesus! Take that burden and let it go! Let him carry your burden. The Bible says (1 Peter 5:7) to cast your cares on Jesus because he cares for you! It's his job to carry your cares and it's your job to cast your cares onto him. If you're carrying your cares and your worries, and you're trying to sort them out, then you're taking Jesus’ job away from him. So, help Jesus do his job, today, by giving your burdens and your worries and your cares to him, and trust in him to provide your every need.