There are two words that cause many problems for life. “What if” If we would be able to eliminate those words, our level of stress would decrease. I mean consider all of the ways this comes up: “What if I get sick and my family needs me? What if my car breaks down and I miss my important meeting? What if I get robbed while walking downtown?” There are so many possibilities out there that our mind, if allowed to run free with all the possibilities, will run us ragged. What does the Bible tells us about this?
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6
The cure for anxiety is prayer. God wants us to bring everything to Him in prayer and then leave it in His hands. He is the one who can actually do something about it anyway! God is so gracious to us in this because not only will He take our anxiety from us, but He will then replace it with His peace.
“And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:7
Are you feeling anxious today? Take it to the Lord in prayer and receive His perfect peace.
There are times I look at someone and I wish I had more to offer. I wish I had the words to make things better. As a parent, we try to make things better with our children. Comfort them, kiss the wound, and send them on their way. But in so many lives there is anxiety, depression or emotional scars that are far deeper than a band-aid and a kiss. They need God. I am so glad He is there. You see, the good news is that God is willing to go to all of those places!
No matter where you go, God is willing to go there with you.
In Genesis 39 there is a familiar story of Joseph and Potiphar’s wife. To make a long story short, she ends up accusing him of trying to assault her and Joseph ends up in jail. But do you know what it says? It says that while Joseph was in prison, God was with him. He was even in solitary confinement and God was with him. God showed kindness to him and watched over him even though he was suffering. He didn’t take the suffering away. He was there with him in it.
It is a healthy reminder for all of us that there is no limit to God’s presence in our life. If you are in prison, the hospital, or in your living room wondering how to navigate the pain of your life, God is with you! Sure the suffering might not just disappear, but knowing you are not alone should give you some hope.
So remember that no matter where you go in life, God is willing to go there with you.
I took my 6-year-old son fishing yesterday at a pond in town. The goal for him was to catch enough fish to have some sort of fish nuggets. We caught a handful of fish, but they were all too small to get any meat from. One of the joys in this for my son is to be able to cast. I have been trying for a long time to teach the boys how to cast into the water. The always manage to cast near the water, even if sometimes the hook goes backwards. This does create a lot of extra work for me, but I figure one day it will be worth it. Even with their shady casting record, I inevitably I hear “dad, let me cast.” I then hand the rod to them and get out of the way. Casting is a skill, a learned skill, and something that has inherent challenges to it. There are times when the wind is blowing too hard to cast with precision. There are other times when there are trees or other people around making it difficult to cast. Certain reels will get tangled up if you are not careful. Sometimes the location of your cast ends up being on top of lily pads or an unseen stump that will just get you hooked up to it.
In 1 Peter 5, Peter tells us to cast our anxiety on Jesus. We are called to cast our fears and heartaches on Him. Life is filled with unknowns. We live much healthier lives when we apply this truth daily.
“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7
The same way there are challenges to casting a fishing line in the water, there are also challenges to casting our anxiety on Jesus Christ. We are people who look around and see all the challenges with an increased sense of panic. That is when the “what if” scenarios start in. “What if I make the wrong choice?” “What if the test results show cancer?” “What if I am not happy?” Yet, what does it say? Are we supposed to cast our anxiety on him just because that seems like the logical thing to do? No, we are to cast our anxiety on him because he cares. The God of the entire universe cares for you!
Today might be a great day to start your casting lesson. Sure you might hit some unexpected obstacles and forget how to cast at times, but soon you will find the joy in resting in the one who cares for you.