If you’re like me, you have often found yourself buried under some emotional rubble. Some situation that you have allowed to, piece by piece, completely consume your focus. And, like me, you have often (at least subconsciously) viewed yourself as somewhat of a victim in that situation. We feel as though we need out of our worry-filled predicament and no matter how hard we try to focus on the Lord, He seems distant, and our problems (real or imagined) are the only thing in our focus. Sound familiar? If you are human, I know it does.
Why Do I Worry?
I have found that in walking with the Lord, one of the most freeing things in any area is to realize that I am expected to take responsibility. Certain aspects of life can often feel out of control and overpowering. So when I realize that God actually expects a certain reaction from me, there is freedom. After all, He wouldn’t expect a certain response, if I were incapable of giving it. Most of us are somewhat familiar with the scripture to “cast your cares on Him, because He cares for you” 1 Peter 5:7. It is also mentioned in James, and of course Jesus Himself said “do not worry about your life”. Anybody that grew up in or has been acquainted with Christianity for any time knows that they aren’t supposed to worry. So why do we? Well, I think it goes back to my first thought; that we view ourselves as a victim in those situations and view a worry-free life as some unattainable Christian standard that we would like to achieve one day. But for now, we have things to worry about. After all, if we don’t take care of this situation, who will? But if we go a couple verses back from the care casting verse, we find a verse about pride. Specifically “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble”. In fact the instruction before being told to cast your cares on Him is “humble yourselves”. When you think of someone who is weighed down by the burdens of life, completely consumed with worry and care, you usually don’t associate that with a proud person. But God does. The truth is, when we think that it is our responsibility to take care of our finances, care of our families, care of our health and so on; we are in pride. I don’t know about you, but there is actually something freeing in that for me. When I know that God loves me and doesn’t condemn me even a little, but that I actually have an obligation to walk humbly and cast my cares on Him, I feel empowered to do it. I don’t want to be proud! I don’t want to be my own God and take care of myself. You don’t either.
Staying Humble and Resisting Worry
So step one in resisting worry and care is to keep our hearts in a humble place. We are not our own provider. We are not our own healer. We are not in charge of making sure everything works out in our life. But isn’t that a strange thought compared to this world’s way of thinking? Everywhere we look, we are being encouraged to take care of our own life. Every tv commercial, every Facebook ad, every conversation we have, basically every influence we are exposed to in this natural world is encouraging us to “take care” of our own life. After all, if you don’t, who will? Well, He will. The whole of 1 Peter 5:7 is “Cast all your cares on Him, BECAUSE He cares for you.” Its doesn’t just say cast your cares on Him and then not give a reason. The reason is that the caring for us is supposed to be His job. How often have we tied His hands from handling a situation for us, because we handled it for ourselves. I know I have done that countless times. I am a doer. I like to get things done and make things happen. But I have often (out of concern or fear) rushed into a situation to “handle” it, only to realize later that God had another path that would have been a lot smoother and a lot more care free.
Grace to be care free
Wherever you are today, there are certainly things in your life that are pressuring you to “take care” of them. I would encourage you not to. There may be natural things you need to do, but doing allow the burden of the situation to become yours. We have a Father who is our care taker. And while pride says “If I just give it to God, nothing will happen, how’s He gonna fix it?” Humility says “I don’t know how, and I don’t need to know how, I trust Him and he said this care is His, not mine”. When we do that, there is a grace and a wisdom to deal with life’s situations that surpasses anything we could muster up.