Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.
1 Peter 5:7
Recently during one of our meal community gatherings, a friend was talking about the exhausting and often frustrating world of parenting little ones. As a parent of a newly walking toddler, she was expressing a reality that every single parent has felt at one time or another. She also happens to be a “hands talker” (I can relate to that), so as she shared her thoughts, she expressed them visually. In one of those moments, she just kind of threw her hands up in the air as a way of mentioning how everything was just. too. much.
Oh, friend. I understand. Parents, do you remember those days of having a kid whose entire goal in life was to grab every breakable and dirty thing in the house and drop it on the ground or put it in their mouth? It’s as if they’re briefed every morning that they have one task in life: absolute destruction, but with a silly smile on their face so no one knows the truth.
Anyway, back to the point. The moment my friend threw her hands up in the air, it struck me as eerily similar to a posture of worship. Some of us have those personalities where when you’re singing and you sense the joy of God, you've just got to throw your hands in the air. And in that moment, it looked like my friend was worshipping.
And then I thought, well maybe she is.
It struck me, as my friend threw her hands up in the air with a laugh and mentioned how sometimes she just feels done… that hands up in worship isn’t so much different. Worship (whatever posture we take) is simply admitting that we’re done, but not in a defeatist way. It’s admitting that we’re in need and that we’re so full of thanks that we do not have to bear everything on our own. We walk through experiences that we simply don’t feel equipped for. Parenting. New jobs. Relational problems. Figuring out finances. Health crises. And we are overcome with moments of feeling like it’s too much for us to be the ones calling all the shots.
That’s because it is.
It’s too much to have the weight of the word on our shoulders. It’s just too much. It’s overwhelming to constantly draw on our own strength. We need something more. Someone more. We need someone beyond us, so that we can remember that we’re not the top of the food chain, and rest gratefully in that amazing fact. It’s not all up to us. And that freeing knowledge moves us toward worship.
So, what do we do in the moments that we feel overwhelmed? We throw our hands up in the air! In frustration. In surrender. In praise. All of it. Maybe we even raise the roof a little and dance. Because it’s not all on us. There is grace. So much grace, friends. Grace upon grace upon grace.
You might have a moment of throwing your hands up this week. In exhaustion, in frustration, in being overwhelmed, in feeling like you’ve just got nothing left. Go ahead and throw them. Let those hands remind you that that you have Jesus with you, and you don’t always have to have strength. You don’t have to have it all together to be loved. You are allowed to be overwhelmed. You’re allowed to be broken and messed up. And you can cast your cares on a loving father, who meets us where we are, walks with us, and leaves us changed every time. Your world doesn’t have to be peaceful to be given the peace of God. What incredibly good news that is.
Jesus, when I am overwhelmed today, give me a reminder of your grace and presence.