If I'm filled with anxiety, my mind is on myself constantly. I'm wrapped up in my own little world. I can't be sensitive to others because I'm not thinking about others. I can turn my attention to loving other people only after I obey 1 Peter 5 verse 7:

Cast all of your cares upon Him for He cares for you.


Play It Again, Mark

In college I had a Christian friend named Mark--a superb piano player. One night as Mark played for a group of students in a dining hall, he suddenly said, "I won't play anymore." The students urged him to continue, but he stood and repeated, "I won't play anymore." Then he left. Because of the strange abruptness of his departure, I followed him out and asked if anything was wrong. "I became the center of attention," Mark replied, "and I don't want to become proud."

Actually, being the center of attention is not necessarily wrong. Jesus was the center of attention almost constantly. The key difference is that Jesus wasn't the center of his own attention. He wasn't thinking about Himself; He was thinking about helping those around Him.

Mark became proud, not by becoming the center of people's attention, but by becoming the center of his own attention. Mark received an anxious thought, and anxiety always turns our focus inward. If Mark had cast his anxiety upon the Lord, he would have been free to continue playing the piano for the benefit of the students.

Have Another Worry

Once when my wife Marcy and I were in graduate school, a friend named Vicky knocked on our apartment door. As I opened the door, Vicky burst into tears. We invited her in for lunch, and she began to share her worries about a possible breakup with her boyfriend. She was anxious about facing the future without him. After listening to Vicky's story, Marcy and I shared with her about casting her cares upon the Lord. She did. Boyfriend or no boyfriend, she put herself and her future in the hands of a wise and loving Father. Her countenance immediately changed.

She laughed and talked with us for another hour or so. However, when she picked up her books to leave, I noticed her countenance fall again. Stopping her, I asked what thought had just entered her mind. "I'm suddenly afraid the peace I have now won't last," she replied. Do you see what the enemy was trying to do? Even before she got out of our apartment, he was saying to her, "Here, have another worry."

Anxiety is never justified in God's sight. Cares about our love life, our future, our work, our finances, our marriages, our kids, etc. must all be cast upon the Lord. When we hold onto a care, we take the problem out of God's hands. Consciously or subconsciously, we are choosing to handle that matter on our own.

If you have difficulty casting your anxieties upon the Lord, finding it hard to relinquish control, the cause might be that you don't trust Him. If you fear God's will in an area, you will not entrust that area to Him. Lack of trust grieves God and greatly hinders Christian growth. Behind the lack of trust is a lie which denies God's goodness. The truth is that God is more ambitious for your fulfillment than you are. He knows what's best for you, and He wants what's best for you. You must come to grips with the last part of 1 Peter 5:6-7: "Humble yourselves... casting all your cares upon Him BECAUSE HE CARES FOR YOU." He really does! As you realize the truth about God's love for you, your trust will grow, and you will become delighted to put your anxieties and yourself in God's hands.

Jamie Lash                     

(assisted by Brent Wallace)






 Jamie Lash    LifeGivingWords
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