How would you like to begin the new school year with a loan this big?

How would you like to begin the new school year with a loan this big? If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed with your higher education expenses right now, you might find a small measure of comfort in meeting somebody who owes a bit more than you do—the United States. Today’s headline was an eye-catcher: “U.S. is facing tidal wave of red ink.” And underneath it followed these words: “In a chilling forecast, the White House is predicting a 10-year federal deficit of $9 trillion—more than the sum of all previous deficits since America’s founding. And it says by the next decade’s end the national debt will equal three-quarters of the entire U.S. economy” (South Bend Tribune 8-26-09). I’m not very good with big numbers, but does 9,000 billions of dollars strike you as a bit excessive? And what kind of monthly payment plan do you suppose they’ll need in order to make up that staggering deficit and pay off the resultant debt? “Tidal wave” seems an appropriate metaphor, doesn’t it? But never mind the government right now. Think kingdom instead. For once upon a faraway time in a faraway kingdom, the God who still rules it made a promise that, while it wouldn’t solve our national deficit or debt, is the solution to your own new year worries. Tapping into the latent fears of us all, he spoke this quiet but profound reassurance when he was here among us: “‘Not even a sparrow, worth only half a penny, can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don't be afraid; you are more valuable to him than a whole flock of sparrows’” (Matthew 10:29-31 NLT). Did you catch that? “Don’t be afraid—you are more valuable to him.” More valuable than a flock of sparrows, more valuable than the tidal wave deficit and debt of this nation, or of all the world—truth be known (and it is), you and I are more valuable to him than even his own life. Just look at the cross! So if you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed (or even underwhelmed) just hours into the new university year, cheer up and take heart. There is Someone in “The Temple” who will take care of you. In the words of that old gospel song—“I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free—for His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.”