Today I had to take Jesus serious on His offer to give me rest by casting my cares on Him and taking His yoke upon myself. I seem to be in a phase of life where I’ve got a lot of things weighing down on me over the course of a week. You know the drill, probably:

  • People I wish I could change but I can’t.
  • Circumstances I wish I could change but I can’t.
  • People I know need change in their lives but refuse to pursue it.
  • Circumstances I know need to change but my time to act has not yet come.
  • Changes in my own life I know need to happen but are hard, slow, and painful.
  • Things about my own life I wish I could change but frankly… can’t.

So that stuff builds up over time. It used to be over much longer periods of time… I’ve made a lot of progress in my life in this area, I think, but it still builds up; even if it’s just over the course of a week, a few days, or even a few crazy hours.

So today I unloaded on my Savior. I took Peter seriously when he said we should “cast all our cares on Him (Jesus), because He cares for you (me).” As I was sitting in church, I grabbed the nearest blank sheet of paper, and just started writing down names, circumstances, and stuff that came to mind that was either plain stressing me out of weighing me down. I let it kind of sit there on my lap throughout the service, adding something here, writing down a promise from God there. At the end of the service, which was not at all related to the subject of worry, I don’t think, I wadded it up, and put it in my pocket.

Two hours later it was still there. A wadded up piece of paper with my cares on it, not yet fully released from my life. Even after identifying the stuff getting me down and recognizing I couldn’t deal with it on my own, it’s still hard to let go.

I finally did. Tossed it in a trash can at Cracker Barrel.

The “stuff” isn’t all gone. The circumstances are still there. The people are too. The issues with self haven’t gone away. But they’ve once again been dealt with. I let them go. Cast them aside, reminded myself that I don’t have to carry them alone.

Peace is strange sometimes. It’s like you know the battle is still waging, and you may even take another beating, but you know you’ll live you. You will survive. You will even gain ground and conquer over time.

Another pile of rocks.

1 Peter 5:6-7: Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Matthew 11:28-30: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”