In a terrifying situation, God promises to be a refuge. In the Bible, that is, His Word that He left us, we find a way to be truly delivered from our worries and fears. So let’s get our strength back!
Frightening circumstances, world fears, have always been. In 2020, the whole world was shaken by a virus, but the previous century had experienced its turmoil with two world wars. Epidemics, conflicts, earthquakes … there is nothing new under the sun. The early Christians also faced a terrifying threat. Every day, they risked being arrested and put to death in the most horrible ways: eaten by lions in the arena, stoned, burned alive, and even sawed in two! (Hebrews 11:37) It was to these Christians that Peter wrote. “Give all your worries to him, because he cares about you” (1 Peter 5:7 NCV). What an encouraging verse … if we know how to apply it!
God knows that this world is wicked and that life is threatened in all kinds of ways. But He still encourages us not to worry. As the verse says, worries are a mental burden too heavy to bear. It is a burden that paralyzes us, crushes us, and it is not God’s will for His children. “Come to me, all of you who are tired and have heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Accept my teachings and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble in spirit, and you will find rest for your lives. The burden that I ask you to accept is easy; the load I give you to carry is light ”(Matthew 11:28-30 NCV).
Transferring our worries to God takes effort on our part. The word “cast” is the translation of the Greek word “epirrhipto” which is also used when people threw their clothes on the ground for Jesus to step on with His donkey (Luke 19:35). It is also the same idea described when Jesus asked the fishermen to cast their nets (John 21:6). To get rid of our worries is not to mourn in prayer. It is to make the voluntary decision to get rid of them, to no longer have them. It is to realize that these anxious thoughts are a poison that stifles our faith (Matthew 13:22) and choose to remove them from our heads. It’s to mention them to God and end our prayer in victory knowing that we no longer have them.
How do we do this? The secret is in the previous verse. “Be humble under God’s powerful hand so he will lift you up when the right time comes” (1 Peter 5:6 NCV). To be able to cast our burdens, we must first put God back on His throne. We are not the savior of our situation, God is. And He is all-powerful. To humble ourselves is also to put ourselves in our place, that is to acknowledge that we are human with a limited time on earth, but an eternity that awaits. It is to recognize our limits and to raise God as the master of everything, capable of controlling everything. When we humble ourselves and put God back on His throne, we find hope and peace (Matthew 6:31-32).
Getting rid of our fears is not only comforting, but it is also essential and vital. Maintaining stressful thoughts weakens our immune system and makes our heartbeat race, accelerating its degeneration. Getting rid of our worries is not only a good recommendation, but it is also a commandment to prolong our life. Worry is a door that the enemy uses to destroy us: the following verse confirms it! “Be sober, stay vigilant: your adversary, the devil, prowls like a roaring lion, seeking who to devour. Resist him with unshakable faith, knowing that the same sufferings are imposed on your brothers and sisters in the world” (1 Peter 5:8-9 NCV). It is when we are in the right place, that is at the feet of our master, that we can have victory over our worries and the devil. It is when we feed ourselves more with the Word of God than on what is written in the media (social or conventional) that our faith becomes unshakeable.
Today, choose to refuse worry. Cast your worries on God and rest in His peace, at His feet (Luke 10:41-42). Then, the devil will no longer have access to your life (Psalms 91).