If you humble yourself in God’s awesome presence, he will eventually exalt you as you leave the timing in his hands. Pour out all your worries and stress upon him and leave them there, for he always tenderly cares for you. Be well balanced and always alert, because your enemy, the devil, roams around incessantly, like a roaring lion looking for its prey to devour. Take a decisive stand against him and resist his every attack with strong, vigorous faith. For you know that your believing brothers and sisters around the world are experiencing the same kinds of troubles you endure. And then, after your brief suffering, the God of all loving grace, who has called you to share in his eternal glory in Christ, will personally and powerfully restore you and make you stronger than ever. Yes, he will set you firmly in place and build you up. And he has all the power needed to do this—forever! Amen. 1 Peter 5:6-11
We usually read these verses with some emphasis put on not being anxious. Other translations say “be anxious for nothing, cast your cares upon Him…” I read this the other day and what struck me in a fresh way was that casting our cares and worries upon Him is right in the middle of being humble and resisting the enemy! Permit me to explain how the Lord revealed His truth.
I believe one way to humble ourselves before the Lord is to be perfectly honest with Him about how we feel, what’s going on in our lives, all that worries us, all that puts fear in our hearts, every little detail for nothing escapes Him anyhow. He sees right through us but that seeing is to help us and show us how much He can help us. Pour out your worries! I like that because it tells me we never need to hold back with Him. We don’t need to be polite or pretend in His presence. He tenderly cares for us! He knows how hard life can be and knows what stresses us out and causes anxiety in our hearts and souls.
Right after Peter tells us to pour out your worries to the Lord he talks about being aware of the devil’s ways. When we hold things in I think it gives the enemy an avenue to attack us. When we aren’t honest with ourselves the devil can attack us in many ways. He tells us we can “handle it” or that “we don’t need to let anyone know how we really feel” but that’s all a fear-based way of seeing God. We are always exposed to Him and I’m glad we are because He knows us better than we know ourselves. (See Psalm 139.) He never rejects us for struggling, for hurting, for fearing or for doubting. It’s when we hold back, hide from Him that the enemy has an inroad.
See the promise there at the end of that passage – of lifting up, of restoration, or powerful transformation. When we cast our cares upon Him, it’s almost like a powerful protective bubble goes out around us. Part of trust is to confide in another. When we open our hearts honestly before Him, we are trusting Him. It’s too bad the devil has so marred God’s image – making us feel afraid to tell Him how we are for fear of repercussion or rejection or some judgment. A thousand times no – God isn’t out to judge us! All judgment was spent on Jesus at the cross on your behalf! He is not angry with us because He sees us in Christ – blameless and perfect in Christ.
So pour out your heart to Him and leave your worries at His feet. His is perfectly able to handle everything going on in your life. Escape the snare of the devil by being honest with the Lord! Amen.