Don't Worry- Pray
Eleven ‘easy’ words, we usually make complicated. Probably without years of experience trusting and receiving God’s love, we can’t fully overcome our habits of worry, anxiety and fear. In some bible translations, it says, ‘cast all your cares.’ Whether we are using the word worry, anxiety or care, the message remains, what we put into our soul shapes us. What we think about during our waking hours is basic to prayer. Prayer intends to immerse us in the thoughts of God.
We are called to develop habits of peace, rest and hope, as God builds in us patience and endurance. Hopefully, if you are walking with the Lord awhile, you have expectant and confident hope that God is always in control and we can trust what we cannot ‘yet’ see. The definition of anxiety – painful or apprehensive uneasiness of mind over an impending or anticipated ill; fearful concern or interest; characterized by, resulting from or causing anxiety: worrying. If anxiety is your usual go to, you can break this habit and choose to pray and stay at peace.
As we know, caretaking situations and emergencies arise all the time. Continually ‘casting’ strengthens our awareness of God’s presence and unconditional love. “Casting’ is a decisive act, it means to take the load we have been carrying and literally throw to the Lord. What a relief when we do and realize He is willing to be responsible for the things we are anxious about.” (Bible Reader’s Companion, Lawrence O. Richards) The immediate demands of our situations won’t be able to overpower us because our prayer is steeping us in God’s thoughts and enabling us to love as God loves.
Staying peaceful is proof that we are trusting God to do what needs to be done. In the following psalm and many others, the power of God’s word comforts, heals and encourages us. (The Everyday Life Bible – Amplified Version in parenthesis,) Psalm 55:22 “Cast your burden on the Lord (releasing the weight of it) and He will sustain you; He will never allow the (consistently) righteous to be moved (made to slip, fall or fail.)”
Do you wonder where does worry ever get us? Like a rocking chair, it doesn’t get us anywhere. Direction comes from two verses in the gospel of Matthew 6:25, 34 “Therefore, I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat (or drink) or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself. Sufficient for a day is its own evil.”
Prayer holds us in the hope that comes from God’s steadfast love. “Prayer is sitting in silence until it silences us, choosing gratitude until we are grateful, and praising God until we ourselves are an act of praise.” (Richard Rohr) As we pray and depend on our Higher Power we are convinced we cannot fail. Cast your care, don’t worry, pray!