Broken relationships that cause an emotional shut down, excruciating losses, severe illness – I have been through it, and I am sure many of you have experienced the same maybe even to a greater extent. We have all heard Christians say “give it to God,” but do we really know how to do this, and if we do, then why is it so difficult?
We all desire it to some degree and it is necessary in our daily lives. Whether you are a manager looking over your employees or a mother raising and homeschooling her children, without control and discipline we rule out of chaos and the results are mayhem. We control so many areas of our lives that it becomes difficult when we need to release authority. Yet, that is just what Christ has called us to do – surrender our lives, including our burdens, to Him. In the gospels, Christ gave us a cure for worry and anxiety:
“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all of your worries add a single moment to your life? And why do you worry about clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their own clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear? These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows your needs. Seek the kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. So don’t worry about tomorrow , for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.” (Matthew 6:25-34 NLT)
The God of the Universe created you. Surely if He can do as little as produce food for the birds or clothe the flowers He can give you, who are created in His image, what you need. Be assured the Father knows what you require and His desire is to provide for His children. However, don’t miss the second half of what Jesus has to say here… “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness.” Jesus promises us that the more we focus on the kingdom, the less we will worry about our daily troubles and anxiety.
Here lies the difficulty for some of us. Would you trust your problems with an acquaintance? Would you feel confident that they could carry the burden for you? I certainly wouldn’t. As I was contemplating the difficulties of giving our troubles to the Lord, I looked back at my life and could see a progression. The more I grew in my relationship with Christ, the easier it was to trust Him with my problems. I had grown to know Him by spending time with Him. Praying, spending time in the Word, attending a healthy church and Bible studies all helped to bring me to the point where I could release control and trust in Him. Romans 10:17 promises just that, “faith come from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.” (NIV)
Jesus promised that the more we focus on the kingdom of God, the less we will worry about our daily troubles and anxiety. It is this true relationship that will enable us to give up control and leave our worries at the cross. This my friends is a remedy worth pursuing!
Humble yourselves, therefore under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.
(1 Peter 5:6 HCSB)
Do not be anxious about anything, but in prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy— think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. (Phillipians 4:6-9)
- Holman New Testament Commentary – Matthew, “Matthew 6,” accessed 8/1/2016 , http://www.mywsb.com/library/title/005447483