Are you familiar with the passage in James that talks about casting your care on God? I have often stumbled on this passage trying to understand it. As a Martha Do-It-All, I find that it is a constant struggle for me. I had always understood it to be a one-time event, and then it was done. Isaiah 40:31 talks about waiting on the Lord and not being weary. The tempter has often oppressed me with this passage condemning me and telling me that I was a failure because I was weary and impatient. But lately, I have come to a new understanding of casting.
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We are blessed to live on a lake, and my husband and sons love to fish. This has introduced me to a new meaning of “cast.” There is not much that they love more than sitting on the trunk of a dead tree, fishing pole in hand, throwing their line out, making sure they miss the branches and debris, and then just waiting for something to happen. Apparently in their minds, this is a great form of entertainment, relaxation, or something. For me, it has always been pure torture. But in the last year, I have started to understand the appeal, as well as it’s deeper meaning.
When I apply their version of “cast” to my cares, it takes on a whole new light. I am not trying to heave an ever-growing boulder over my head to try to throw it (and yes, that really has always been my visual image of what I was supposed to do!). I am supposed to take one almost invisible line with a problem attached, toss it as far away from me as I can and then wait. Not calculate how far it has traveled, not research what it might need once it gets to the water, or even prepare myself to have enough information to be able to anticipate what it is going to need when I bring the line back in. I am simply to wait.
It is easy for me to understand why women are not usually the ones to go out fishing on a Saturday morning. We tend to carry the weight of the world on our shoulders, thinking that we are doing our job and being responsible. But I cannot help but wonder what God really had in mind for those times. If I were not so busy building the framework for the boulder of things that I thought I would need later, then constantly researching them, would I have learned something new about my sons? Would we have had a better relationship? Or perhaps, I simply would have had more quiet in my soul and accomplished more of worth because my mind was on what God wanted me to do now instead of preparing for the future.
I find myself hesitating to write these thoughts, because in many ways, preparation is vital. But it is an act of submission and learned patience to be able to determine between properly preparing for the future, and taking no thought for the morrow.
When I began this journey of simplicity more than a year ago, I thought that it would be an easy task. More than 13 months into it, I find that I am learning more each day about how much I complicate things without even realizing it. I’m sure at this point, Greg is laughing his head off amazed that perhaps *something* is sinking into this thick skull of mine.
I cannot promise, or honestly even aspire, to have the level of simplicity that he has attained. It is truly a gift from God that he can live in the moment and not worry about what the future holds. But I can aspire to be intentional. To commit each activity and purpose to prayer before I decide to charge forward with it.
Do you struggle with this as well? Do you feel the burden of responsibility weighing you down so heavily that you do not see any way to accomplish everything that is required of you? Have you stepped back to see what it is that you are really doing? Where did the responsibility come from? Have you sincerely prayed about it’s place in your life? What would happen if you did not participate in the activity that was causing you tension and frustration? Would your future suffer because of it? How about your relationship with your family? Or is it possible that by letting go of the boulders, and casting them away, that you actually create more time with your family and accomplish more of the goals that Christ has given you, while at the same time being filled with more peace than you could even imagine?
Today, I challenge you to pause before you fret over a potentially problematic situation. Cast that one thing to God. Don’t try to fix it, solve it, or research it. Just spend a few moments turning it over to God. Then move on with the list that He has given you for the day. Then if you are willing, come back and share with us what you discovered.
- Abiding In God’s Word
- Beautifully Weak