Casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7 ESV
“Smile! God Loves You!” This is a truth as old as the ages. I believe it became a catchy slogan in the 1970s. Iron-on transfers made their way onto t-shirts. It was printed on bumper stickers. Coffee drinkers were encouraged daily to remember this as their mugs included a yellow smiley face.
Two years ago, I was assigned as the emcee for our yearly women’s conference. My favorite job! I get to welcome ladies who have traveled representing various churches in the county and surrounding counties. I get to see faces of those of different ages, different stages of life, different sizes and shapes, and different life situations. As I looked out from behind that pulpit, I saw that sea of faces. And it was a beautiful sea.
Thirty days before that conference, a prayer team and I prayed for those attending. Using a prayer calendar with prayer prompts, we tried to cover every situation that the women may be facing.
As I was praying one day, a gentle voice spoke to my heart, “Tell them I care.” Ok. I thought that was a given. But I will obey.
When I stood before those precious ladies, I welcomed them warmly. I encouraged them to put their mental to-do list on the back-burner and press into God for a few hours. I mentioned the prayer list our team uses. I’m sure if I asked if they knew that God loved them, I would see a sea of nodding heads. Then I repeated what I had heard during my prayer time. “Ladies, whatever you’re facing today know that God cares.” I trust the Holy Spirit touched the heart(s) of those who may be wondering if God actually cared.
It became clearer to me that we are the matters of God’s heart. There is nothing that touches us that doesn’t touch Him. We know that He loves us unconditionally and perfectly. That’s the easy part. But by knowing He cares, we can be assured He can and will do something in answer to our prayers with whatever we are facing. It will be in His time and His way.
The scripture used above is sandwiched within a passage in 1 Peter 5. Take a look at verses 5-11. I have often quoted verse 7 when faced with a difficult situation. But there is some action on our part. Before the casting is done, we need to humble ourselves.
I used to think of casting in fishing terms. However, when a line is cast and a fish takes the bait the fisherman reels it back in. If I am to cast my anxieties (KJV says “cares”), I need to leave it alone and not try to reel it back in. Easier said than done, but I must, we must do that.
So, “Mary, you matter to God!” “Cathy, you matter to God!” “Jennifer, you matter to God!” “__________ (fill in your name), you matter to God!”
Knowing God loves us should definitely bring a huge smile to our faces. Knowing God cares brings peace and assurance that He will act on our behalf.
Heavenly Father, thank You for Your unfailing love! It makes me smile knowing You love me unconditionally and perfectly. I am also grateful to know You care enough to hear and answer my prayers according to Your will. Help me to cast my cares at Your feet and leave them there. Amen!