Whether you’ve stopped by because of the carnival or because you joined me on Andrea Ingram on WordNet Talk radio in North Carolina at 1:00-2:00pm this afternoon, welcome!!
Nothing makes us want to live safe in God’s love and protection than when we are plagued by fear and anxiety. The million dollar question is..
How do we get to a safe place in God where we run free and leave our anxious cares with Him? We follow the advice of Peter in I Peter 5:7. He knew we would be concerned about the necessities of life. Even the most mature Christians today are apt to labor under the burden of anxious and excessive care such as personal concerns, family woes, cares for the present, cares for the future, cares for themselves, for others, and for the church. Peter saw this anxious care as a heavy burden and he gave us some wise counsel for dealing with it. Peter’s advice is to cast all our cares upon God. We are to throw the cares that distract us, wound our bodies and souls, and lay heavy on our hearts, upon the wise and gracious providence of God. You can do that because “he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7) Isn’t that amazing? You and I don’t have to carry the burden of our worries. God is willing to release us from our cares, and take our concerns upon Himself.
Let me be honest. It’s easy to cast my cares upon God. The hard part is not taking them back. When it appears to me that God is not paying attention to my needs, worry returns and I feel the need to do something about it.
For example… after I lost my husband, I suffered with colon attacks. It was how my body dealt with the stress. (If this is ‘TMI—too much information’ for you, skip to the next paragraph) I don’t know if you’ve ever experienced a colon attack or have known someone who has, but they are agonizing. If you don’t know any better, and I didn’t, you’d think you were dying with colon cancer. The excruciating cramping in your stomach last for hours until it gives way to—well, let’s just say more unbearable pain in the bathroom until sweet relief is achieved. Even though it’s a painful experience, the worst part is not knowing where you’ll be when the next attack occurs.
I assumed by casting my situation on God and asking him to carry the burden meant that my stomach troubles would go away. The burden of not going to counseling once a week and not having that extra bill to pay was expected when I gave it over to God. But none of that ceased. I kept having colon attacks which meant I still needed counseling for my grief. And while I hoped that the counselor would at least ease my debt, instead, she went up on her prices. What was the point of giving my burden to God in the first place if he wasn’t going to make it all go away? I wondered.
The point is this. When you and I cast our cares on God we are acknowledging and recognizing that it’s His responsibility to care for us—not ours. At first the weight is lifted until God doesn’t respond to our need like we think He should. Then, we are quick to retrieve the burden. We forget that God is painting on a large canvas. He sees the big picture. We only see what’s happening to us at the moment. God may allow events to come into our lives—good things and bad things; things that make sense and things that don’t. Every one of these incidents serves as part of his plan for our lives. What you and I may think is harmful and destructive God is using for our good—to bring us to completion in godly conduct and character. He will allow nothing to happen to us that isn’t first filtered through his screen of protection. In other words, what won’t destroy us God uses to better us. Ultimate harm would be if God left us in the state we are in.
You and I have this promise in hard times. “We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed” ( 2 Corinthians 4: 8,9, NIV).
God will not let our hardships destroy us. Though they may be tragic in and of themselves, He will use them for our good. You and I cast our worries on God because it’s His responsibility to give us what we need. As we trust him with the bigger picture of our lives, the weight is lifted and peace washes over our anxieties. (Excerpt taken from my book, An Untroubled Heart)
One of my favorite books to read that helps me stay in God’s love is “His Princess…Love Letter From Your King” by Sheri Rose Shepherd. Today, I’m giving away a copy!! To enter to win, leave your name and email address in the commit section. Good-luck!