Monday, August 9, 2010

Worry and Prayer Can't Coexist

Dear Friends,

One paraphrase of 1 Peter 5:8 says “You can throw the whole weight of your anxieties upon Him for you are His personal concern.”

Prayer and worry cannot live together. You cannot worry and pray at the same time. Prayer is the place to let your anxieties go – to hand them off to someone else, someone well able to carry them for you. God!

It’s hard to throw the whole weight of our anxiety upon Him isn’t it? How do we do that?

When I’m traveling, which seems to be constantly, I carry a briefcase full of files and books with me. It’s heavy. When I’m on the road alone my back hurts by the end of the day. Often I’m with my husband, Stuart, or daughter, Judy, who hurry to take my briefcase to lift the load. I want to help so it’s not an extra burden for them. Sometimes I say, “Let’s both carry it. Let’s share it.” But the handle isn’t big enough and it doesn’t work. I’ve even been tempted to open the bag and take out some of the books to carry myself so it’s lighter for them! But their backs are strong and well able to carry the case while my back is hurting, unable to carry it. So I throw my burden gratefully into their hands! They always smile at me because they love me and are concerned.

Occasionally I refuse their kind offer of help. Why? For all sorts of reasons. I get to thinking they have their own burdens, and I should be able to carry a little briefcase filled with a few books. Or I begin to worry that they’ll dread having me along because I’m such a nuisance with my moving library! I always reap the consequences of carrying the stuff myself, when guilt, self-effort, pride, or stupidity lead me to refuse their helping hand.

I’m sure Stuart and Judy consider me very foolish when they are walking right beside me and are willing and able to help, but I insist on going it alone. I think God thinks we are very foolish, too, when He has told us to hand off our heavy issues to Him and we don’t. So don’t forget: God is your constant travel companion along life’s road. His back is big enough and strong enough for your case load of worries. And don’t be opening the bag and keeping a few books to carry for yourself to make it easier on Him. Throw the whole weight of your anxieties upon Him for you are His personal concern.

In His Love,

Jill Briscoe
Executive Editor
Just Between Us Magazine

7 comments:

  1. The timing of this message is perfect. I am laying here, awake, unsuccessful in letting go of the issues at hand. I will attempt again, with the knowledge of this blog - thank you.

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  2. Ditto for me, Anonymous. The timing couldn't be better. The weight of anxiety over issues I can't control--or don't know what to do about--is crushing. I just read Jeremiah 32:27: "Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for Me?" Besides "throwing the whole weight of my anxieties upon Him" as Jill suggests, I will exercise my faith and believe Jeremiah's words.

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  3. I definitely can relate, as I deal with chronic back issues. The guilt associated with constantly asking others for help can creep in quickly. God has used this physical ailment to show me many of His characteristics. Thank you for adding to that list. :-)

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  4. Love it. Thank you!

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  5. Thank you for the reminder, Jill. I'm also reminded that instead of being anxious about the burden, I should be extremely thankful as I present my load to the One Who desires to take it all; and then look forward to the inexplainable peace that He gives when I obediently do that.

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  6. I lay my worry down. Again. Again. Why do I pick it up when I know Jesus has my best interest in mind? Take it Jesus, One more time...carry my loved one for me. And all his mistakes, and doubt, and unbelief. Stop the pain. Stop the bleeding one more time. I rest in you.

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