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Friday, July 11, 2008

Cast Your Cares

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. (1 Pet 5:7)

Often it's the little words which hide the greatest meaning. In this verse it's the word, "all." Paul makes a similar statement when he says, "do not be anxious about anything," (Phil 4:6).

Anxiety
I do not know a single person who has not experienced anxiety at some time. Even my 10 year old son recently showed symptoms of anxiety when he was faced with a science test at school. But a close friend of mine, who's family situation has given her more reason than most to be experiencing anxiety and stress at the moment, has been telling me how the experience has changed the way she prays.

While I, with a bit more emotional distance, can pray about the details of the situation, she is so closely involved that it is hard for her to know how or what to pray. It is when we reach this point that casting all our anxieties on the Lord Jesus becomes the only way in which we can pray.

Casting It All On Him
My friend has found that simply offering the situation to God and trusting Him with her family has brought her a great peace that she did not have whilst struggling to pray considered prayers. It doesn't matter that she hasn't known what else to pray, the Lord has taken control of the circumstances and has moved to bring about change and positive outcomes.

All and Nothing
We will all reach that point at some time when we know there is no alternative but to cast our cares on the Lord Jesus. When I recently underwent surgery there was nothing I could do to influence the outcome. All I could do, as I succumbed to the general anaesthetic, was pray, "Lord Jesus, I trust You."

But we shouldn't wait until we find ourselves in extremis before taking on board this concept of casting our cares on Jesus. Peter says, "cast ALL your anxiety on him." Paul says, "do not be anxious about ANYTHING." We should be practising this with every little concern we have so that when the really big test comes we have learned how to trust Jesus completely in the trial.

That's not to say we should neglect praying where we are able, or acting where we have responsibility. But we have to learn that ultimately everything is in the Lord's hands and that trusting Him rather than being confidently self-reliant should be our goal.

Prayer College Assignment
Jesus Himself said, "do not worry," (Matt 6:26). I am by nature a worrier. My husband has joked that I would worry if I found I had nothing to worry about. I have decided to give up my addiction to worry. It is a decision any Christian can make because we have a place to take our worries where we can leave them in trustworthy hands. We have a responsibility, not just to ourselves but to the lost around us, to accept the peace that Jesus offers. People are only going to be interested in Jesus if they see He makes a difference. Determine today that you are going to show the world that Jesus can bring peace where there is fear and anxiety.

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