Psalm 55:22 Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you.
Life is seldom carefree this side of Eden. We have cares about money, marriage, kids, health, work, parents, aging, war, death and more. Too many cares weigh us down, and will break us if we let them. Instead of carrying the burdens of life ourselves, God invites us to cast our cares on him.
A man bought several sheets of plywood, and stacked them on his car. At first there was no problem; the car seemed to handle it fine. But after the fortieth sheet, the roof caved in, and his car was completely destroyed.
We can handle most of our problems, one at a time, but if they are stacked high enough, they will crush us. Casting our cares on the Lord is not just good advice; it may be the only way to survive. Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you.
Psalm 56:3 When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.
If David’s enemies had their way, his life would soon be over. David was rightly afraid, but he refused to let fear overwhelm him. Instead, he simply put his trust in God.
Trusting God is easy when the bills are paid, our job is secure, and our health is holding up. But we know from Scripture, and experience, that terrible things can happen to God’s holy people. Trusting God is not believing nothing bad will ever happen, but that God is in control and is up to something good (Romans 8:28).
Imagine a veterinarian who wants to free a bear caught in a trap. First he has to shoot it with a tranquilizer, which the bear perceives as an attack. The bear thrashes violently, but only hurts itself more. If it only knew the veterinarian was trying to do it good, the bear could relax. That is what David did whenever he was afraid. When I am afraid, I put my trust in you, he said.
Psalm 65:3 When we were overwhelmed by sins, you forgave our transgressions.
Everyone sins, every single day, but some days are worse than others. If the world, the flesh and the devil conspire together, we can find ourselves doing things we never imagined.
Many years ago I went for a swim in the ocean, and tried to body surf. I wanted to ride on top of the wave, but it dragged me along the bottom. I was absolutely powerless, and came up a bloody mess. That is what overwhelming sin is like. It drags us along the murky bottom and makes a mess of us.
Thankfully, God’s answer to overwhelming sin is overwhelming forgiveness. We come to him in terrible shape, and he makes us new again. [H]e does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities (Psalm 103:10). Instead, he gives us what we need the most through his Son Jesus Christ. Your sins are forgiven. . . . Your faith has saved you; go in peace (Luke 7:48-50), he said.
Psalm 69:14 Rescue me from the mire, do not let me sink.
David was having a terrible time and feared for his life. Do not let the floodwaters engulf me or the depths swallow me up or the pit close its mouth over me (Psalm 69:15), he wrote. There are times when death comes near, and only God can save us.
Two men were walking an Alaskan shoreline when one stepped into quicksand. A helicopter was sent to lift him out, but the pain was so intense that they had to stop. Soon he was up to his armpits and the tide was coming in. They had no choice but to make a final attempt, and thankfully, it worked. When life threatens to swallow us up, we can call to God for help. Our God is a God who saves; from the Sovereign Lord comes escape from death (Psalm 68:20).
Psalm 73:25 Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you.
One of the first and favorite words that children learn is, mine. From childhood we love our stuff, and spend our lives trying to get more. This makes us happy for awhile, but not for very long.
A minister was having lunch with a wealthy man who was feeling very troubled. I have everything I need to be happy but I am miserable as hell, he said. Later that day the same minister sat with a man who lost his wife, and was caring for his ailing sister. I don’t have two nickels to rub together, but I am the happiest person I know, he said.
No one in the Bible was happy all the time, but if there is a secret to happiness it could be this: Delight yourself in God, for he gives or withholds the ability to enjoy everything else. If you don’t delight in God, you might get lot’s of stuff, but not the ability to enjoy it. If you do delight in God, you might get very little, but enjoy it very much. Which would you prefer?
Psalm 73:26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
Many have gathered a fortune only to lose it later on. Some have gathered another fortune only to lose that as well. But whoever has God has an eternal treasure that can never be lost. He is our portion forever.
A wealthy and powerful prince disguised himself, and went on a journey to find a bride who would love him for who he was. His disguise was so convincing that most wanted nothing to do with him. Then at last, he found the one he was looking for. When they returned to his kingdom, she was amazed by his power, privilege and possessions—which now belonged to her as well. This is the future of all who belong to Jesus Christ. Whoever loves Christ for his own sake, will have everything else thrown in.
Reflection and Review
How does faith overcome fear?
Is there a secret to happiness?
What is the best part of heaven?