Did you really give it to Jesus?

Good morning everyone,
 
Our theme for this month: “The end of anxiety and despair”
 
Our Bible verse for today: “Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 (CSB)
 
Our thought for today: “Did you really give it to Jesus?
 
In her book, “The Christian’s Secret to a Happy Life” author Hannah Whitall Smith says that “Even more incompatible than oil and water is trust and worry.” She then goes on to ask us to consider the following scenario: If you entrust something to a friend for safekeeping, but then you stay up all night worrying about whether or not your friend is really safeguarding the thing you entrusted to them, are you really trusting your friend? Would you call that trust? Likewise, if you entrust something to God but then you continue worrying about it, do you really trust God?
 
In our sanctuary at Oak Hill Baptist, we keep a large wooden cross on the stage. The cross is mounted on a raised, 3×4 foot platform. Next to the cross is a bin of good-sized stones. Each stone is intended to be a symbol of a burden a person has been carrying and which is weighing them down. We encourage people to come to the cross, pray about the burden, and surrender it to Jesus. Then they take a stone from the bin and place it at the foot of the cross, symbolically giving that burden to the Lord and leaving it at the foot of the cross. But the caveat is that once they’ve done that, they have to leave the stone and the burden at the cross. They can’t have it back.  
 
This is what Paul is teaching in Philippians 4:6-7. There he instructs us to bring our burdens to the Lord, surrender them to Him, and in complete trust and with full assurance leave them with Him. If we will do that, Paul says, we will experience the peace of God flooding our mind and heart. And if you don’t experience that peace, you need to ask yourself whether or not you are really trusting the issue to God, or if perhaps you are doing what Hannah Whitall Smith described above, saying that you trust Him but then still worrying about the thing.
 
God is fully trustworthy. He gave us those instructions and the associated promise in Philippians 4:6-7 for a reason. The instructions are reliable and the promise is certain. Surrender it to the Lord and then enjoy the peace of God.
 
God bless,
Pastor Jim
Copyright © 2022 Oak Hill Baptist Church, All rights reserved.

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