Tyranny. Merriam-Webster simply defines Tyranny as “oppressive power”. Charles E. Hummel insightfully used this word to describe the things we see as urgent by coining the phrase “tyranny of the urgent”. This phrase could be rephrased to say, the oppressive power of the things we perceive as most needing of our attention.
I was reminded the other day of how this power works. There was an issue I needed to settle with my neighbor (a man in need of God’s saving). The matter I needed to address with him was on my mind and kept coming to my mind in an unhealthy, worrying, manner. I was running through the scenarios and how the conversation could or should go. Thankfully, I had the opportunity to talk with him and things resolved quite well. I came inside to see a note reminding me of some medical bills that we needed to settle. The next thing had caught my attention and I found myself obsessing over this new matter that needed my ‘urgent’ attention.
This small snippet of my life reveals a titanic issue. I do not trust God. I allow the tyranny of what is in front of me to blot out the truth - God is sovereign.
“31 So don’t worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’... 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.” - Matthew 6:31 & 33
A disciple, someone submitted to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, is not called to worry. A disciple of Jesus is someone who not only increasingly knows that God is sovereign, but proves this belief by what they think, say and do. Additionally, as we grow as dependant Jesus-followers we will disciple others to fully embrace a trust filled life, uninhibited by the urgent.
God please help us to seek You first in all things and to let go of worry.
By Harlie Raethel
Read the previous Lent devotional here.