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In Luke 12, Jesus is speaking to a crowd as well as to his disciples, and he addresses them ALL as dear friends. He tells the gathered group of thousands that God knows the number of hairs on every head in the crowd. Then he says, “So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.” (Luke 12:7 NLT)
Of all the hurtful things people may say, I can testify to the fact that cruel words attacking our worth, by belittling our value, wound deeply and often leave lasting scars. Words that beat us down like sticks and stones may not break our bones, but they break our hearts and crush our spirits. But we can begin to heal from cruel words when we believe and speak words like the ones in today’s declaration.
Luke 12:6-7 isn’t the only place where Jesus directs our attention to the birds. A little further on in the chapter, in verse 24, he says, “Look at the ravens. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for God feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than any birds!”
Yes we are! You and I are valuable to God.
I can’t close this episode without mentioning what I saw from my kitchen window last week. My circumstances could easily have convinced me that God had forgotten me. I longed to hear from him and was praying earnestly for him to rescue me from a desperate situation. Standing at the window lost in thought, I saw a bird land on the branches of the peach tree outside, pluck a peach, and fly away with it firmly in its beak. Just like that, a bird feasted on God’s provision. Don’t I know that God cares so much more for me? In Luke 12:32, Jesus encourages us to trust and not be afraid. He says, “So don’t be afraid, little flock. For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom.” Don’t be afraid. Don’t think for a minute that you’ve been overlooked or cast aside. Don’t forget that God’s eye is on the sparrow, and he certainly has his eye on you.
Download graphics with the weekly declarations by visiting the Believe & Speak podcast page on my website: shawnamariebryant.com.
This week’s scripture: Luke 12:6-7