Casting your care upon the Lord
On Sundays we can forget about our cares for a few moments in the divine service. But God wants to do even more for us: He wants to liberate us from our cares altogether. What the Chief Apostle explained in a recent divine service was how believers can do their part in the process.
On 26 July 2020, Chief Apostle Jean-Luc Schneider conducted a divine service in Siegen (Germany), albeit with coronavirus protocols still in place. The Bible passage he used for this sermon was taken from 1 Peter 5: 7: “Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”
Worrying about our earthly existence
Naturally, the instruction to cast all cares related to our earthly existence upon Jesus Christ does not mean that we should stop performing our daily tasks. “We are not to be idle, but our earthly existence is not to worry us,” explained the Chief Apostle. Worries are something that trouble us and cause anxiety. The Lord's concern is that the worries over our earthly existence do not become so great that we run out of time and energy to care for our salvation, and thereby compromise our relationship with God. In order to prevent this from happening, we are to cast our cares upon Jesus Christ. On the one hand, this requires us to overcome ourselves. “We must humble ourselves before God, because we know that everything comes from God, and that everything is grace,” explained the Chief Apostle. He went on to add: “God knows what I need better than I do.” On the other hand, we also need trust in God: “I trust His love and His omnipotence, and I know that nothing is impossible for Him,” said the Chief Apostle. He went on to promise: “Nothing will prevent us from having fellowship with God.”
Worrying about our own salvation
Many ask themselves the question: “Can it be that God has elected me, but has not elected others?” or “Will I even be able to manage this?” Yet even if we do not understand God, we can still trust in Him. “Do not make unnecessary worries for yourself,” said the Chief Apostle. “You cannot earn your salvation. You can only attain it through grace.” He called upon the brothers and sisters to occupy themselves with their salvation, but not to let this endeavour turn into a worry.
Worrying about the salvation of those whom we love
Even the worries we have about brothers and sisters who no longer come to church should be cast upon God. Of course, this does not mean that we should become indifferent toward them. “That will not work, as we still love them,” said the Chief Apostle. However, “this concern should not become an obstacle to us. After all, it could rob us of our joy and ultimately affect our relationship with God.” These worries can be cast upon Jesus by trusting in Him and humbly
- acknowledging: “Even if we were perfect, we could not save them. Only God can do this.”
- accepting: “God has made His decision. Everyone has a free will. We cannot force our neighbour to attain salvation.”
- realising: “I love them, but God loves them even more.”
- trusting in His faithfulness: “Even when human beings are unfaithful, God remains faithful.”
Cares about the future of the church
These cares remind us of the storm on the sea (cf. Mark 4: 35–40). The disciples began to worry because the boat was filling with water and threatening to sink. And yet Jesus slept—and then even chastised the disciples for their little faith when they awakened Him. “Such cares with regard to the church can become very depressing and burdensome, and might well discourage us completely,” the Chief Apostle acknowledged. But here too, it is important to trust in God. “We may have had completely different ideas,” admitted the Chief Apostle. But now the time has come to say, “Dear God, you know better than I do. I do not understand anything, but I trust You. You will care for your people. I will carry on.”