I talked with a good friend on the phone today. We talk on a regular basis – usually discussing our families, various issues we were struggling with, and sharing how God has delivered on our prayers. Over the years we have exchanged Bible verses, book recommendations, podcasts and blog posts. We have also yelled at each other, prayed for each other, held each other accountable and provided counseling where appropriate. He is truly my brother in Christ.
We are both driven type-A people who do a job that requires our constant attention and “shepherding”. We listen to our customer’s problems and then propose, build and deliver solutions that hopefully help their companies. It is a good job for both of us, but some times it drives us to wrong actions in our walk with the Lord. Couple our personalities with a job that demands that we “own” the entire sales and delivery process and I think you might see what problem can crop up. As you would expect, the theme between us continues to be how we need to give up our problems to the Lord.
6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
– Philippians 4:6-7
This is just so important. Whether you are in a job like ours or not – this is one of the most important Biblical concepts you can cultivate.
We all have struggles, fears, worries, anger, doubts and a hundred other names for the anxieties that this fallen world seems to breed like cockroaches. There are millions of them, when one is stamped out, 3 more pop up, and they will be around until Jesus returns and rids the world of them. And this is not just a problem for those “less-Godly” people – No matter how close you are to the Lord or how far along you are in your walk – you are wrestling with this issue.
Some people are absolutely better at turning things over to the Lord. I, myself, am no “letting go of problems ninja”, but I have found the more I practice, the better I get. It gets easier because we see what happens when we stop the worry – God delivers for us in amazing ways. Jesus drove this point home to his disciples in a great couple of parables in Matthew 6. He ended with this awesome promise:
33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. 34 “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
– Matthew 6:33-34
So Jesus made a promise that we have seen come true in our lives in many amazing ways – problem solved, right? Guess what – No. We still struggle with worry and anxiety because our memory stinks and the world is relentless. So what do we do?
Do it again – Give it to the Lord through prayer and petition with thanksgiving and then seek His kingdom and live righteously. And then do it again, and again.
Cody Carnes has a great song called “Run to the Father”. It contains so many good reminders – one that I will use here and many others that I will probably store up for later. The first part goes like this.
I’ve carried a burden for too long on my own
I wasn’t created to bear it alone
I hear Your invitation to let it all go
Yeah I see it now, I’m laying it down
And I know that I need You
I run to the Father
I fall into grace
I’m done with the hiding
No reason to wait
My heart needs a surgeon
My soul needs a friend
So I’ll run to the Father
Again and again
And again and again
– Cody Carnes – Run to the Father