First, I am so thankful for the many responses I’ve received from my friends who are watching my programs or reading my letters and emails. I read and appreciate every comment.
I know the year has only just begun, but it’s important that we have in place the equipment from the Spirit of God that will help us in these times we’re facing. When problems and cares come, we need to know how to give those cares to God.
If you’re worried or anxious, that’s a heavy load or burden you’re carrying from day to day. So this month, I’m going to talk to you about how to cast your cares on the Lord.
First Peter 5:6 and 7 says, “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for he cares for you.” As I studied the word “casting,” I learned that in this verse, it means throwing or tossing your cares on the Lord — all of them.
This word “casting” pictures the action of throwing something away from yourself and onto someone or something else. For example, in Luke 19:35, it says the people cast — or threw — their clothes on that donkey for Jesus to ride on it. In much the same way, casting your cares on the Lord is not going to happen by accident. You’re going to have to cast them on purpose!
Casting your cares is not going to happen just because you go to church. It’s not going to happen just because you read your Bible, give your tithes, or because you’re nice to your children. Casting your cares on the Lord is only going to happen as a direct action of using your faith — of taking those cares that are trying to “strangle” your peace and throwing them on the Lord.
What does casting your cares on the Lord look like? It is a picture of a Christ-like attitude that’s not negative, fretful, or filled with regret or resignation. It is an expression of self-humbling and of abandoning trust in self to instead entrust oneself and his troubles to God.
To cast our cares on the Lord, there are two things we need to trust to God. First, we need to trust ourselves to Him. We need to recognize that He is powerful and able to take care of us in any situation. And we must be assured that He is not going to abandon us.
Second, we need to trust our problems to Him. We can trust God so much that whatever problem confronts us, we can let it go — in the same way we took hold of it to begin with. A problem or care may have pushed its way into your mind and emotions, but you can push it back out and cast it upon the Lord! By faith, you can choose to release that problem and trust it to the Lord.
‘My Own Victory Over Worry’
Many years ago, the Lord really dealt with me to trust Him about something that was tempting me to be anxious. Honestly, I was already in such a habit of worrying about this problem that when I heard Him say, “Trust Me,” I said to myself, Trust You with that? I wondered if He was powerful enough to help me let go of that problem and give it to Him. But to the best of my ability, I did trust Him.
And do you know what happened? I began to think differently about that problem, and I actually began to get victory over it. What do I mean by “victory”? I stopped worrying about it! The habitual way I had been acting for years was being broken by my act of trusting Him. But I had to humble myself before the Lord. I had to ask Him to forgive me for not believing Him. Of course, I know there is no condemnation in Christ Jesus (see Romans 8:1). So when I confessed my lack of trust to Him, I was not condemned by Him. But in humbling myself, I received the power to begin trusting Him. And He took care of that situation wonderfully. Friend, that is powerful!
I don’t know if you have any habitual behaviors, like worrying, that you fall into every time something bad happens or someone says something negative to you. But if you do, I’m telling you, those habits can be broken — shattered — by humbling yourself before the Lord and taking that very thing you’ve been holding so tightly to and casting it upon Him.
Look at the Birds!
I want to share with you one of the greatest examples in the Bible of trusting the Lord and not worrying. It’s found in Matthew 6:25 and 26: “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?”
Oh, friend, this is an amazing example of trusting the Lord. First, how many of us are really looking at birds? When the Bible says to “look” at the birds, it means look at, consider, think about, and pay attention to the birds.
You might be thinking, What’s so powerful about looking at the birds? It is so easy to just read these verses and think, Oh, well, that’s nice. Look at the birds. But that’s not how Jesus sees it. He really wants us to look at the birds. Why? Because His great love and care for them are a great example for us — especially if we are worrying.
You may know someone who is so filled with joy that he or she isn’t weighed down with worry and care. But if you don’t know anyone like that as an example who you can look to, I recommend that you look at the birds!
You see, looking at the birds is like a visual lesson. Birds are a great example of how not to worry. They don’t “sow or reap, nor gather into barns” (see Matthew 6:26). They don’t even labor for their next meal.
Lately I’ve been thinking about these carefree birds. They perch themselves on tree limbs, electrical wires, roofs, and windowsills. They sleep so peacefully, completely at rest and secure in the fact that God is going to take care of them. There are no anxious birds — it’s amazing!
Jesus knows that you and I are tempted to worry, and He knows we may be tempted to be fearful and anxious as well. So He says, “I’ve got the answer for you. Look at the birds!” He is saying, “Dear children, here is an object lesson for you. I want you to look at the birds. They are not stressed out, and they are not full of fear, because I feed them and watch over them.”
God cares so much more for us than He cares for the birds. Jesus did not come to save the birds, but He gave His life and His blood, suffering a horrendous death on the Cross, because He loves and cares for us. How much more should we be at rest in His everlasting arms that we can trust to hold us and care for us? We can live just as carefree as those birds!
You might be saying, “Oh, Denise. That’s ridiculous. I’m a responsible person, so I need to worry.” But do you need to worry? Jesus doesn’t think you do! After He said, “Look at the birds,” (see Matthew 6:26), He went on to say, “Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?” (v. 27).
Worry Won’t Produce the Right Results
To put this in perspective, one cubit is about 18 inches. It was as if Jesus was saying, “Your worry is in vain. You can stand around all day and worry, wishing to be taller, but it’s not going to do you any good. You will be the same height at the end of the day as you were at the beginning of the day. You won’t get taller by worrying.”
Jesus wants us to be productive in life. He’s helping us tear away from things that steal from us — such as worry — and he’s redirecting us by telling us to look at the birds and at their example. We can rest in the Lord because we are in His loving, watchful care even more so than the birds.
Jesus continued, “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?” (Matthew 6:28-30).
Jesus is the One who clothes the lilies of the field, which are only here “a day or two” compared to our life. And He said their clothing is more beautiful than that of kings! Once again, Jesus is asking us to trust Him for our every need. Since He feeds the birds of the air and clothes the flowers in the fields, how much more will He feed, clothe, and care for us, His own children?
Then in verse 31, Jesus says, “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’” If we are going to maintain our peace — especially in difficult times — we must take on the characteristics of the birds of the air and the lilies of the field: They simply do not worry. They trust their Creator for their every need.
Can you see the heart of God in these Scriptures? He is warning us to not be burdened with worry and anxiety and sleepless nights. He wants us to experience His perfect peace and to cast our cares on Him, and He will help us maintain peace and will care for us, even in the most difficult times.
I trust that these words from Matthew 6 have been an encouragement to you. They definitely encourage me! We know that this is how Jesus lived — without worry and care. Think about all the things He could have worried about, but He chose to look at the birds and note how God cared for them.
The Bible says that Jesus was tempted in all the ways you and I are tempted, so Jesus was absolutely tempted to worry. He was tempted in every way we are, yet He never gave in to temptation. Hebrews 4:15 says, “For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.” And then in verse 16, He extends the most gracious invitation to us: “…Come boldly to the throne of grace, that we will obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
There is power offered to you at the throne of grace! The Lord will absolutely empower you and encourage you to cast your care on Him so He can help you and lift you up.
Thank you for spending this time with me! And if you need prayer, please be sure to let us know how we can pray for you. You can call us at 1.800.742.5593 or email email@example.com. I’d also like to invite you to join me on my program, TIME With Denise Renner. It now airs on Wednesdays at 11:00 a.m. CT on YouTube and Facebook — it’s a podcast as well on Spotify, Apple, and Google! And you also can find me Saturdays at 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. CT on GospelTruthTV, and Saturdays at 3:30 p.m. CT on PTL. We always have such a rich time in the Word of God, and I know you will too!
Friend, I want to encourage you to cast your cares on the Lord in this new year and let Him lift you up!
We are moving forward together,