Enough Already

Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

(So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own.)

Today’s trouble is enough for today.

Matthew 6:34

I ran across sufficient unto the day in a novel I read in high school. For whatever reason, the line stuck. It’s been a favorite verse of mine for over thirty years, and it has woven its King James wisdom into my life.

I’m a list maker, a planner, an arrive-ten-minutes-early-to-appointments person. In many ways, being like this serves me well. I have little trouble meeting deadlines, preparing Vacation Bible School in February, or getting my annual Christmas letter written by Thanksgiving. But there’s a shadow side to it: pre-worry. An anticipated difficulty can grow to a major problem in my mental landscape long before anything happens in real time, bringing a storm of worry along with it – worry about nothing that’s actually happened, is destined to happen, or even likely to happen. How is it possible, let alone helpful, to feel anxious over phantom troubles?

Usually, I can resist borrowing trouble from the future. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof, rises like the sun, chasing away the dreadful, anticipated projections. Difficulties do come, usually without anxiety tagging along. Each day brings enough strength and grace for its problems. To turn the phrase, sufficient unto the day is the grace therein.

And tomorrow? Tomorrow will bring its own worries. Just like today, tomorrow’s grace will be more than sufficient for them. But that’s not today’s agenda..

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Johnna

I am a Christian educator and writer.I have worked in churches, denominational offices, and seminaries. I have a PhD in Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary, with a focus on Practical Theology and educating in faith. In 2010, my book, "How the Other Half Lives: the challenges facing clergy spouses and partners," was published by Pilgrim Press. I believe that words can build doorways that lead to encounters with God through the Spirit.

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