The long, unusually cold winter in Montreal has been taking a toll on many people. I don’t know about you, but my mood tends to be affected by the weather (not so much when it’s cold but when it’s cloudly and overcast) so on those days I have to make an extra effort to remember that my joy comes from the Lord, and not the sunshine or the circumstances around me. I guess that when I look at it that way, the clouds are a blessing in disguise, since they make me depend more on God!
Life’s like that sometimes. We get discouraged, tired or overwhelmed and then anxiety begins to creep in. What’s going to happen? Why can’t I figure out this problem? How will this situation or relationship ever be made right? When will this sad time pass? Will I ever overcome this struggle?
While some people are careless or indifferent about the serious matters in life, others may go to the other extreme of becoming preoccupied and obsessive about difficult circumstances. Both are wrong. The Bible instructs us to bring our burdens to the Lord and commit all our ways to Him. Our peace shouldn’t come from being able to solve our problems, but rather from knowing that God is with us.
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”
Nothing escapes His notice. Nothing is too difficult or scary for Him to handle. No one is too hopeless for Him to be able to rescue and restore. (And here’s a thought: If there are shadows, that means light is present, too!)
Yes, we have to care and pray and intercede and work and obey and discipline and serve and change…but we can also rest! We can do all those things with joy and peace and courage in our hearts because we know our heavenly Father lovingly watches over us.
I encourage you to stop for a moment right now, take a breath, and give your burdens to the Lord. Tell Him what you’re worried about or afraid of. Recognize the distractions that may be robbing you of your joy and peace. What am I saying? The Apostle Paul put it so much more eloquently:
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” (Philippians 4:6-8)