As believers in Christ, there are verses we turn to over and over again throughout our pilgrimage on this earth. The one I’m reminded of today is this:
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.*
Though you may think this title is a reflection of my present state of being, it’s not. I take it from a journal entry in July 1993. We were living in Damascus, Syria, a place that was not easy to live in back then, much less today.
My husband’s mother had just passed away in Egypt. Thankfully, he was able to fly over and be with his sisters and family for a few days after her death. As soon as he returned, he was gone again, this time to Jordan and then Lebanon, for conferences. I was home by myself, helping a new co-worker move in and get settled while preparing for another couple to arrive the next day.
I was still learning Arabic myself, and yet I was responsible for helping the new arrivals adjust and get started with language study. I prayed for God to calm my anxieties.
God has a way of reminding us of his goodness in the midst of struggles. The pages on which I was recording my thoughts turned out to be the last ones of my first journal used overseas. I realized that it was wonderful to fill those last lines with the blessing of the arrival of new laborers for the harvest.
What brought me anxiety was really an answer to prayer. That thought brought peace.
As we gathered with other workers in prayer, we talked about those floating anxiety levels that come with living in a closed country and the extra effort required to get through each day. That’s when that verse came to mind:
- Cast — throw the anxieties to the Lord
- All — not just some, but everything that’s bringing you worry
- Your — not other peoples’, but your own personal cares
- Anxiety — worries, cares, things that keep you from sleeping
- On Him — Jesus
- Because — there’s a reason we can do this
- He Cares for You
Jesus knows. He understands our weaknesses. He loves us. He really does care.
As I did this back in 1993, I felt such release. Then my eyes went down to the verse at the bottom of that last journal page:
In the multitude of my anxieties within me, Your comforts delight my soul.*
Don’t we serve an amazing God?
Did casting my cares on him, end the challenges in my life that day? No, I still was waiting on our crates to be released from the port (after nine months). We were still without a car. We still had new colleagues to get settled and supervise. There were still problems within the local church body, and … there was a dead bird in our water tank.
And yet…I accepted the reality of this verse:
Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.*
This lesson, that was repeated more than once in our twenty plus years overseas is one reason that this present crisis does not worry me as much. He, who was faithful then, is faithful now. He who cared for me then and helped me through, helps me now. The verses that held true then, hold true now.
Are you struggling with floating anxiety levels? Cast it ALL on Him.
He cares for you.
Grace and Peace
*1 Peter 5:7 (NIV)
*Psalm 94:19. (KJV)
*Matthew 6:34 (NIV)