Wednesday, August 1, 2018

CAST YOUR BURDENS

Have you ever gone fishing? My first experiences were with my dad when I was a little girl. I had my own pole which was shorter that an adult size. My dad was a wonderful fisherman. I loved to watch him stand at the edge of the ocean with this huge pole and reel. He would cast way out over the closest waves. To me it looked like miles. He would fish out of rivers and streams in southern California, catching trout and other species. He began to teach me to cast. Some of you can relate. With me there were the "two foot casts"; there were the "tree branch casts"; there were the "caught in your sweater" casts... all a part of learning. There were the "release the thingamajig too soon casts". Those were the frustrating kind. Determined as I was, I continued to learn so I could please my dad by catching a fish! Through the years I got pretty good at casting and even catching. I fished from piers and used  the "drop cast"... no skills required. Sometimes in our prayer life as in fishing, all we can accomplish is the "drop cast". And that works because God is that close. The scriptures I am thinking of are: "Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved." Psalm 55:22 and "...casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you." 1 Peter 5:7. When you have experienced a devastating trial such as the loss of your loved ones, your home and belongings as well, having happened to one Husband and Grandpa most recently in California, sometimes all you can do is "drop" that prayer line over the side of the boat or off the pier. At times like that you can feel drained of all spiritual, mental and physical strength and you use what little faith you think you have  and you drop that burden down. Why? Because that God given faith causes you to believe God cares. And he does. When fishing from the shore, I was taught that the farther you could cast, the deeper the waters and the bigger the fish. I became quite proud when I was able to really "get it out there". When casting my burdens on the Lord, I always imagine flinging them as far away from me as possible!  Out into the deepest waters... so far that I can no longer see what is on the end of the line. Luke 5:4 is where Jesus told his disciples to "put out into the deep" and to let down their nets. Whether you are casting from the shore with all your strength or in your wounded state, doing all you can do to just drop it off the pier of your circumstances, the results are still the same... God cares for you and he WILL sustain you. That is His promise to you. The Grandpa I spoke of earlier, in the midst of his great loss, said that he was going to spend his time helping other victims of the horrendous fire that swept through his neighborhood. He cannot help the entire city but he can help those in his personal sphere. There is no way but by the Grace of God that we can cast our own burdens on Him and then turn around and lift the burdens of our neighbor. I will end with this: Isaiah 43:1-3 teaches us that no matter what we go through in the physical, no matter how impacting the trial, we will not be destroyed Spiritually. Whether we pass through the fires or the rivers... he is our Savior and he tells us "not to fear" for he is with us and will bring us through to the end. So we must cast our burdens on Him, "So that we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal." 2 Corinthians 4:16-18. We may lose all we have in this life but another life is coming and if we will but look to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our Faith, he understands and will, at times, give us a glimpse of what's ahead as we "Cast our Care on Him". Look up and be encouraged today my Friends!

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