This post is a part of the 5-minute Friday link up. We write for just 5 minutes on a one-word prompt and see what happens. No heavy editing allowed. As today’s word is “carry,” I thought it would be appropriate to share an excerpt from my recently published book, Cast Your Cares: A 40-Day Journey to Find Rest for Your Soul, which released on March 8. This excerpt is from chapter 2, “The Practice of Casting Your Cares.”
Trying to cast your cares on God is like playing with a boomerang. You throw it as hard as you can only to have it come right back to you. That’s the object with a boomerang, but it’s frustrating when this happens with our cares and concerns. We want to throw them to God, and we don’t want them back.
First Peter 5:7 says, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” Just cast all the things you are worried about onto the strong shoulders of the almighty God. Sounds peaceful, relieving, and restful, doesn’t it? But what does it look like? How do we practice casting our cares on him?
When we give something over to someone else to take care of, we are saying that we give over control, that this is theirs now. Our cares are gone. Off our shoulders. There’s a prayer called the Serenity Prayer that asks God to grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change (to cast our cares on him), the courage to change the things we can (to do what we can to address the cares), and the wisdom to
know the difference.
It’s often this last part that causes the majority of our trouble. But we worry less when we seek God’s help, asking for his wisdom to reveal what we might do to change or accept the situation.
So when your teenager keeps making bad decisions, you pray and ask God to help you release that child to him. And when the desire overwhelms you to constantly check where they are, or to worry about who they’re with, or to question them when they get home, you take a deep breath and release that worry. They are in God’s hands. Ask God to give you wisdom for how to respond to your child. Ask that he bring friends into your teen’s life who will influence them to make better choices, who will build them up rather than tear them down. You might have to do this over and over again, but keep turning your worry over to God. As you do, his peace will fill your heart.
Or maybe you’re concerned about an aging parent’s health. Perhaps you see them struggling with memory issues or the ability to take care of themselves. Even as you might make decisions to get them the care they need, you find yourself burdened by the load of your care. And so you pray and give that care into the hands of not only your heavenly Father but also their heavenly Father. Each time the knot of
worry pulls tightly on your stomach, take a deep breath and remind yourself of how much their heavenly Father cares for them. The burden is not yours to carry.
Quite frankly, we can’t take care of everything by ourselves. We were never meant to do that. Instead, our loving God desires us to come to him with all our shattered dreams, disillusionment, dashed hopes, and fears. He waits for us.
Remember that what feels like such turmoil within you doesn’t even stir the waters of God’s great love for you. Your anxieties don’t faze him.
Because God is so big and so powerful, those concerns aren’t too heavy for him. Let God have them because he cares for you. Remember, he knows the future, including your future, and his plans for you are good. Cast those cares.
Excerpted from Cast Your Cares: A 40-Day Journey to Find Rest for Your Soul (Zondervan, 2022)