Mason Harris
Newbern, Tennessee

An old European proverb says, "If you can swallow a toad every morning before breakfast, you have conditioned yourself for the troubles of the day." We live in a world of frustration and despair whose greatest problem seems to be that of security, or rather the lack of it. The history of man is a history of combat and a struggle to survive. And even now the possibility of a nuclear war or some other cataclysmic event dims our hope for survival.

Added to this is a future threatened by inflation, higher taxes, and the snare of easy credit. With all this it is difficult not to worry, - to be anxious about the outcome of it all. But Jesus said, "Do not be anxious, saying: What shall we eat? or, what shall we drink? or, With what shall we clothe ourselves? . . . But seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own" (Mt. 6:31-34).

Engineers, in planning a structure, make provision for an ample reserve factor (or safety factor); they design it to be able to withstand a strain ten to fifteen times as large as anything to which they expect it to be subjected in the ordinary course of its existence. Man also needs a reserve factor that he might keep from reaching a breaking point. He has a tremendous need for courage, patience, and faith. Such strength is available in God. Peter said, "Humble yourselves therefore tinder the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you at the proper time, casting all our anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you" (1 Peter 5: 6-7).

God heard the ancient Israelites when they cried front Egyptian bondage-and delivered them. He heard them again when they cried to Him because of their oppression by the pagans in the land of Canaan - and He sent men like Gideon, Samson, and Samuel and delivered them. God delivered the three Hebrew children from the fiery furnace and Daniel from the Lion's den. Do you serve the same God? Then what greater security do you need?

August 2, 1973