“And when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” (1 Corinthians 11:24 ESV)
People often say we should “give it (our anxiety, stress or worry) to God.” A dear one recently asked me, “What does that even mean? How do I do that?” Her question has been on my mind. In the moment, we talked about how church can help us remember God’s presence in our lives, how worship can take the focus off our worries and put the spotlight on the One deserving of praise and glory. We talked about how certain traditions, like communion, can give us time to remember all the ways God has been present in our lives, all the gifts he has given us, all the trials he has brought us through. We didn’t talk about how heaven, the kingdom that cannot be shaken, gives us reason to keep plowing ahead and reason to hope both in the present and in eternal life, but Scripture reminded me.
The question sticks with me because there is more. Paul tells us that we should pray and humbly tell God all the things on our hearts, asking him for what we need. Peter tells us we can give God our anxieties as well, but he also tells us that we need to be watchful because our enemy prowls around, seeking to harm us. He tells us that we will suffer in the same ways that believers around the world suffer. I don’t think that means we all suffer the same way, but that others sometimes suffer in similar ways to what we experience. Maybe we could seek out some of those people and see what they did to make it through the tough times. Maybe others will have insight on what we can do to keep that lion prowling, rather than attacking.
Something C.S. Lewis said plays in my mind as well. He wrote in Mere Christianity that God the Father is over us, Jesus is beside us, and the Holy Spirit is in us. I love this explanation of the three persons of God, and when I remind myself of it, I feel completely covered in God’s love, protection, and promises. Sometimes I even picture him there with me, nail-torn hands and feet, wrapping me up in a big hug. I believe that so much of giving something to God is remembering who he is (God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), where he is (always with us, in three ways), and why he is with us (because he loves us). We can stand on the promise that God is with us, holding us in our toughest moments.
Lord, help us to stand on your promises, remembering that we can surrender all our cares to you. Amen.
Scriptures for Reflection
“Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe.” (Hebrews 12:28)
“The Lord is at hand. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:5-7 ESV)
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” (1 Peter 5:7-10 ESV)
Reach for More
Has there been a time in your life you remember “giving something to God?” Would you be willing to do a little sharing today? Would you comment below with a short story or pearl of wisdom about what that looked like for you? Or would you hop on over to The Glorious Table Community on Facebook and comment there? We would love to remember God at work in your lives along with you.
We would also love you to comment if you need prayer about something you are trying to release to God, either below or on the community page. We can learn so much from the experience of others. Maybe we will see the Holy Spirit working in our own lives more clearly. We can find so much solace, courage, and unexpected joy in community with people who are seeking the Lord. Let’s lift each other up!
Carla Clemens enjoys a crazy, beautiful life with her military husband and four sons. A baby and toddler interrupt her homeschool days in the best ways, and she is always attempting to live with mindfulness of each moment. She hopes to look at the world and each person in it in light of our amazing Creator and therefore, to see each moment presented as an opportunity to love and serve him more. Carla relishes time to ponder God’s Word and have quiet moments with him and her coffee. She loves doing life with other mamas and encouraging them to simply be who God has made them to be.
Photograph © Lina Trochez, used with permission