The Weight of Anxiety

1478771966941

In order to cast ALL your anxiety on Him, you have to move your focus from your anxiety to your Savior.

You are focused on what you’re worried about, what you can’t control, what you are not strong enough to carry. You are focused on the problem and how heavy it weighs upon your shoulders. You are focused on your own hands when God is asking you to focus on His heart. 

He cares for you.

He cares for more than you can comprehend. 

When you are in the middle of a fierce storm feeling out of control and tossed around, you ask Jesus, like the disciples did in Mark 4:38, “Do you even care that I’m in this storm? I didn’t see it coming, I didn’t cause it to happen and I’m not sure if I’m going to make it through.” 

The answer is yesHe cares. 

Yes, He knows.

Yes, He can handle it.

In fact, the Hebrew word used for “care” in both the above passages is the SAME word used in 1 Peter 5:7 (NIV):

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭5:7‬ ‭NIV‬‬

The word “cast” is a word picture of throwing something very heavy and getting it out of your hands.

Jesus can handle whatever you are carrying. He who carried the weight of your sin can carry the weight of your fears.

Does God care? 

Yes, He absolutely does.

Delight, Desires

Psalm_37-4_v5_Photo5_Web_2000x

“Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”‭‭

Psalm‬ ‭37:4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Which side of the comma are you living in?

Take delight in the Lord,

or

And he will give you the desires of your heart?

Delight, desires.

What you focus on determines how you experience Him.

When you are focusing your life on delighting (joy, great enjoyment, and pleasure) in the Lord, the world seems like a wide open space for you to experience with someone you love.

When you focus on the desires of your heart, the world seems a small closed space in which you can only see what you don’t have and experience and envy what everyone else seems to have.

I’ve learned that my desires are not good taskmasters but they do make great idols.  They also make flawed foundations for a relationship with God or anyone else.

I’m not saying that your desires are bad, in fact, I believe that the Lord puts loads of good desires in your heart: the desire to love and be loved, to connect and be connected to,  to cherish and to be cherished.  What I am saying is that if the focus of your life is getting your desires met that you will be miserable and probably not even know why.

Living on the delight side of the comma means that your focus is on your relationship with God and being delighted in Him, by Him and with Him and trusting Him with the rest.

There is sweet freedom found in delighting in your relationship with God while letting Him hold all your desires to do what He may. He is a good Father and knows you more than you know yourself.

How are you delighting yourself in the Lord?

What is making you miserable?

What side of the comma are you living on?

Learn to Say No

leadership-quotes-the-art-of-leadership-is-saying-no-not-yes-it-is-very-easy-to-say-yes-tony-blair-wisdom-quotes

“Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ be ‘No.”’

Matthew 5:37 NKJV

No.

A simple answer but rarely an easy one.

At some point, you will need to say NO to good things so you can say YES to the things God is calling you to.

For those who are challenged by saying “NO”, here are ten different ways to say it:

1. I would prefer another option.

2. I would love to say yes to everything, but that would be stupid.

3. Someone would be awesome at this, I am not that person.

4. Some things have come up that need my attention.

5. We should rethink this.

6. My instincts tell me I’m just not suitable for this.

7. It would cause the slow withering death of my soul.

8. Um, no.

9. My plate is already full but I will be happy to suggest somebody else’s plate to put it on.

10. No, I’m doing all I can right now but thank you for giving me the opportunity.

What do you need to say “NO” to in order to make room for the right “Yes”?

Impossibility

img_4991-1

In Exodus 14 the Israelites were stuck between the sea before them and their former slave masters coming to recapture them. It was an impossible situation.

“But Moses told the people,

‘Don’t be afraid.

Just stand still and watch the LORD rescue you today.

The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again.

The LORD himself will fight for you.

Just stay calm.”’

‭‭Exodus‬ ‭14:13-14‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Hemmed in by the mountains on both sides,  they had no way out and no way forward. Their new found freedom seemed fleetingly short and ultimately doomed.

They knew that God had delivered them from slavery but little more. They had not been free long enough to learn how powerful He is. They didn’t know that He would fight for them, split the sea before them and rescue them from an impossible situation.

They did not know God…yet.

When you don’t want to go back but don’t know how you are going to go forward, trust God and:

1. Don’t be afraid (don’t let fear dictate your decisions).

2. Stand still and watch the LORD rescue you (stop trying to fix the situation yourself. Let God work).

The LORD Himself will fight for you. 

When going forward looks like an impossibility, God is not punishing you, He is teaching you more about Himself. 

Trust Him and watch what He is about to do.

Your Way

aaf9a83b26486dd7e4754c88d247b819
“Commit your way to the Lord,
Trust also in Him,
And He shall bring it to pass.”
Psalm 37:5  NKJV
Commit your way. 
To commit is an action, not a choice.
When I commit to a diet, I’m making a decision.
When I mail a letter, I’m taking action.
You can’t mail a letter if you hold onto to the edge of it. It will never get to where it needs to go and you are not trusting the postman or woman to do their job.
To commit your way to the Lord is the same thing- you need to give your way to Him. You are putting the direction, the journey, the destination into His care. The word for commit here means to “roll away”. 
To the Lord.
Give your future to God.
Let God have it.
Pry your fingers off the fears you have for your future and give it to Jesus.
Lay down the cherished dreams of a perfect life and roll those over to Jesus as well. Your expectation of a perfect life without pain or heartache is not reality and doesn’t help you deal with it. Those expectations actually trip you up more than your fears do.
Let go and let God.
Trust also in Him. 
Focus on your relationship with Jesus and let Jesus focus on your future.
And He shall bring it to pass.
The phrase in English “He shall bring it to pass” is actually just one word in Hebrew, asa.  It means He shall assemble, accomplish, create, produce it. He shall attend to it, bring it about and ordain it. He will bring it to pass.
“And then finally, when you’ve gotten to the place where you can commit your life and the affairs of your life into God’s hands, then you have arrived at the place of that glorious resting in the Lord. ‘God, I’m just resting in You. Whatever comes, Lord. However. It’s in Your hands.”’
Chuck Smith
It is only when I commit my journey (and re-commit it hourly) to the Lord and trust Him to bring it to pass in my life that I am truly free to rest. I am free to discover delight. I am free to focus on doing good where I am instead of carrying the weight of the uncertainty of the unseen future on my shoulders and give it all to God.
I roll it over to Jesus and say, “Here, this is yours. You can take care of it.  I’m Yours and so is my future. Thank you that I don’t have to carry it, worry about it, fret and fight to make it happen. You already have a plan and a purpose for me. Help me to discover it step by step with You.”
How do you deal with an uncertain future?

Desires, Delight

take-delight

“Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”‭‭        Psalm‬ ‭37:4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Which side of the comma are you living in?

Take delight in the Lord,

or

And he will give you the desires of your heart?

Delight, desires.

What you focus on determines how you experience Him.

When you are focusing your life on delighting (joy, great enjoyment, and pleasure) in the Lord, the world seems like a wide open space for you to experience with someone you love.

When you focus on the desires of your heart, the world seems a small closed space in which you can only see what you don’t have and experience envy what everyone else seems to have.

I’ve learned that my desires are not good taskmasters but they do make great idols.  They also make flawed foundations for a relationship with God or anyone else.

I’m not saying that your desires are bad, in fact, I believe that the Lord puts loads of good desires in your heart: the desire to love and be loved, to connect and be connected to,  to cherish and to be cherished.  What I am saying is that if the focus of your life is getting your desires met that you will be miserable and probably not even know why.

Living on the delight side of the comma means that your focus is on your relationship with God and being delighted in Him, by Him and with Him and trusting Him with the rest.

There is a sweet freedom found in delighting in your relationship with God while letting Him hold all your desires to do what He may. He is a good Father and knows you more than you know yourself.

How are you delighting yourself in the Lord?

What is making you miserable?

What side of the comma are you living on?

No

on-saying-no

“Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ be ‘No.”’

Matthew 5:37 NKJV

No.

A simple answer but rarely an easy one.

At some point, you will need to say NO to good things so you can say YES to the God things.

For those who are challenged with saying “NO”, here are ten different ways to say it:

1. I would prefer another option.

2. I would love to say yes to everything, but that would be stupid.

3. Someone would be awesome at this, I am not that person.

4. Some things have come up that need my attention.

5. We should rethink this.

6. My instincts tell me I’m just not suitable for this.

7. It would cause the slow withering death of my soul.

8. Um, no.

9. My plate is already full but I will be happy to suggest somebody else’s plate to put it on.

10. No, I’m doing all I can right now but thank you for giving me the opportunity.

What do you need to say “NO” to in order to make room for the right “Yes”?