Friday, September 27, 2019

But for a little while

Casting our cares is a choice. It means consciously handing over our anxiety to Christ and allowing Him to carry the weight of our problems. At times this is the most difficult part of trusting God! We don’t like turning over the responsibility for our problems. We have been taught that self-reliance is good and praiseworthy. We may even enjoy worrying. Yet if we are to be freed from the burden of our concerns, we must choose to cast them into the strong hands of our Father. Peter does not distinguish between little cares and big cares. God does not differentiate between problems we should handle on our own and God-sized needs. He asks us to turn them all over to Him. One of our greatest errors is to assume we can deal with something ourselves, only to discover that we really can’t. God sees you as His frail child, burdened with a load that surpasses your strength. He stands prepared to take your load and to carry it for you. Will you let Him? - Blackaby Experiencing God Day by Day

"After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you."  1 Peter 5:10 NASB

How many readers can relate to the fact that growing up hurts?  It does!  And the greatest lie we tell ourselves is that what we go through is unique to ourselves!

"Oh I have messed up so much that God's having nothing to do with me!" - wrong.

"I have been so consumed with negative thoughts that it seems like God is so far from me" - wrong.

"I have nothing good to offer God. My life is a slow motion train wreck." - wrong.

"Why is my life filled with so much pain and trouble?" - again, wrong.

My dear reader, you are by no means alone in all that you are going through.

As Blackaby points out, casting our cares upon Jesus requires us to make a choice.

Over and over again in Scripture Jesus says He is God, that He will never leave us nor forsake us.  That He loves you and I.

Oh if I but had the time this morning to find all those passages to show you!

The truth is, we who are saved by His Grace, will indeed suffer in this life.  We will be the people who rejoice in adversity.  When things get most others down, we should be lifted up.  Why the opposite?

Our enemy and God's would like nothing more than to silence the Christian.  To shut them up.  The more we share what Jesus is doing in our lives the harder it is for him to keep people from God.

He tries to discourage us in ever increasing ways to take our eyes off Jesus and put them on our problems. 

Look what that got Peter, and he was standing WITH Jesus on the water!  Right next to Him!

We shouldn't allow our circumstances the time of day to drag us down.  A long time ago now, I used to not realize that truth. 

I was so convinced that I was doing God's work that I was drowning in negativity.  Not my own, but everyone else's.  I was trying to counsel people and wasn't experienced at it.  Online at that, people would unload onto me, at my urging, and in a click they were on their way, and I had all their emotional baggage heaped on me.

It was so bad that I began believing the lies that Satan was telling me.  I despaired of waking up every day.  I went through the motions at work.  Went home and not knowing what else to do went back online taking in more of others problems.

I felt very lost and distant from God.  Yet He never left me.  He was quietly waiting for me. I got to the point where I felt completely cut off from God.  That my life wasn't worth anything and I had messed up so badly that even God had rejected me.  Lies! Lies! Lies!  Yet I bought into them.  It came to a head one day in May of 1999.  Before me were 3 options.  The first was to end it all, which I was prepared to do.  The second was to stop fighting it and live my miserable existence until I died.  The third was to try one last time to seek God. To throw everything on the table. My sin my shame my hurts my pain. Everything about me. Every last shred of the mess that was me. To ask Jesus for help, whatever the cost.  No strings, no more of the conditions that I had been holding onto for my life.  Whatever He wanted I would do.  Wherever He wanted me to go, I would go.  I was done. My life wasn't worth anything and if He would take me back I was His to do with as He saw fit. My misery hit a wall.

As you might have guessed, I chose door number three.  Jesus spoke up.  Reminded me that I was still His. That He was waiting for that day.  Healing would come.  Now the real work in my life could begin. 

My life hasn't been the same since.  I have no more regrets.  I have had other Spiritual surgeries in the last 20 years but He has seen me through them.  As it is in the physical world sometimes surgeons do work in stages so that the patient can handle the whole process.  Jesus is the great physician.  He was doing that kind of thing long before man figured it out.

You too have choices to make.  You too must choose each day whom you will lean on.  You too must choose to include Jesus in your life.   Will you be giving up things in your life?  Yes. I won't lie to you.

I have given up many things, but discovered that I really didn't need them.  They consumed my mind, my energy, my efforts with no real benefit to my life or those around me. 

We do do much to try to find peace on our own.  Yet, Jesus says if you want it, He has it to spare.  Peter wanted that peace and thrill of standing on the water with Jesus again after he began sinking.  We all want that exhilaration of rejoicing because of what God is doing...but it's us who take our eyes off Jesus and put them back onto the storm.  We forget who lifted us up and made the things possible that were impossible and we begin to sink.

Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face, and the things of Earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.

Trust and Obey for there's no other way to be happy in Jesus but to trust and obey.

Praise Him! Praise Him! Jesus our blessed Redeemer sing oh Earth his wonderful love proclaim!

My dear reader you can either live with worries, regrets or anxiety or you can believe the truth of Jesus.  Life is going to be life.  It going to have trouble and it's going to have problems.  Who you choose to go through it with daily is up to you.

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