Received: 2022-12-06 01:36:18

Please pray for Darlene Gesh's mom, for whom Darlene had to call an ambulance this week. She has very low blood pressure and now pneumonia. There is lots of testing coming up so they are praying for some answers.

We’re going to spend a couple of minutes in prayer right now, but we’re going to do it in a bit of a unique way. To participate, you’ll need to grab a few simple items (that hopefully aren’t too far away, but feel free to pause the video if you need to go hunting). You’ll want a bowl, a pen, and a few scraps of paper.

Not sure if you’ve noticed, but life is chocked full of hard situations, complicated relationships, often difficult feelings, and endless opportunities to worry and even feel overwhelmed. It’s a lot to hold and carry, to be honest. 

1 Peter 5:7 offers one of the best invitations in all of scripture, and I love it for its tenderness: 

“Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.” 

I don’t know how hard or easy it is for you to believe words like that, I know I struggle at times, but I wonder what it would look like for us to actually practice that together. You know, instead of letting whatever anxieties and fears you may be facing right now to take over, what would it look like, for us to practice letting God hold our cares instead? To believe that God is big enough and loving enough to handle whatever we’re facing these days. 

I asked you to grab a bowl, which might seem a little odd. But in the book of Revelation John tell us that the prayers of the saints are placed before God as bowls of sweet-smelling incense. 

So here’s what we’re gonna do. We’re going to make some time right now for you to name – by writing down – whatever anxieties and cares are weighing you down right now. And then we’re going to – symbolically and prayerfully – place those things before God by placing them into the bowl. Trusting Jesus to carry them for us. 

So set your bowl out on a table, or chair, or the floor near you. Grab your papers, and take a moment to get honest about the worries and concerns you’re carrying, that maybe need to be placed into bigger hands. 

What is weighing your heart down today? Write the things down, one by one, each on a separate scrap of paper. And then take a moment to hold each one up to God, before dropping it into the bowl. Let the drop into the bowl be a choice to release & entrust your cares to the One who loves you more than you can possibly comprehend. Try to feel it. 

This doesn’t have to be a one-time experience. Maybe you even want to leave this bowl somewhere where you’ll see it regularly and be reminded that God is actively holding you. And whenever you feel overwhelmed or anxious, just grab another piece of paper, write it down and place it in this bowl as a way of casting it onto God. 

Let’s pray: 

Jesus, would you receive our cares now, and all of the raw feelings that come with them. You see our hearts, you know our minds, you’re well-acquainted with the wrestle. And you tell us it’s ok. Would you show us how to walk in light and life. How to be Kingdom people full of love and hope and compassion and courage. And peace. Deep, soul-level peace. Would you make us strong where we are weak, and brave where we are afraid, would you help us to experience your love and care in ever-deepening ways. In You we pray, Amen

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