“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
1 Peter 5:8
When I was coaching young girls in basketball, I could see the biggest problem for them was the fear of getting trapped with the ball and not being able to find anyone to help. Feeling alone and isolated, they would panic. Anxiety would grip them and the result would almost always be a double dribble, a walk, a bad pass, or the dreaded jump ball.
So, I taught our team to always keep one girl behind our player with the ball, providing an easy outlet pass in case of trouble and to always run to our player if she was in trouble. The peace this brought to our young girls was immediate. They rarely panicked. Instead, they could now see the court clearly and therefore make wise choices.
Their perspective was improved radically just by knowing there was always someone behind them, ready to take the pressure off of them. They thrived, they enjoyed the games, and they achieved their very best. The A+ life in sports!
This is what Jesus can and wants to do for you. I love the way Oswald Chambers puts it: “Fill your mind with the thought that God is there. And once your mind is truly filled with that thought, when you experience difficulties it will be as easy as breathing for you to remember, ‘My heavenly Father knows all about this!’”
How would it change your life, your day to day decisions, if you knew you had someone always looking out for you? Times get tough and your anxiety is mounting. You are feeling trapped. The pressure is coming, and it’s hard to “see the court clearly.” How great would it be to know, with full and complete confidence, there is someone behind you waiting to take that ball of anxiety from you?
We humans have devised a multitude of safety valves that are poor substitutes for the real thing. They are not all necessarily evil, but they are always second rate. What do you rely on to give you this sense that you’ll be taken care of?
Let me guess a few: your parents, your money, your job, your image, your stuff, your goodness, or your good works? Maybe it’s keeping everything the same: your safe, but C- routine?
These may give us a sense of security, but they will always fail us when the press gets really tight. They will slip and slide beneath us. They are a sandy, not a solid foundation. That is why Jesus said, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand” (Matt. 7:24-27).
You are never alone when you have placed your trust in Jesus. He is always standing beside you saying, “Just relax. Hand those troubles over to me. I can take it. I got your back.”
Sam Hunter is the author of The Putting Green Blog and host of South Carolina’s Christian radio talk show, 721 Live, which helps people to apply the Bible to their everyday lives. He has produced two DVD curriculum series: Contentment: The Path to Peace and Fear: Do you React in Fear or Respond in Faith? In addition to speaking to men’s groups weekly as the director of 721 Ministries, Sam is invited frequently to speak to groups at churches, retreats, high schools, and colleges.