For weeks, I had tried keeping myself productive. Everything will be fine, I told myself. But deep in my heart, where no one could see, I didn’t feel fine. So much of life has changed in such a short period of time. There are no blueprints for what’s ahead, and everyday there are new uncertainties to shield my children from — as well as trying to process things for myself.
Stress and worries have a way of reappearing on our paths, don’t they? As I hiked up a trail one morning, I doubled up my powers of analysis to solve a dilemma I was stuck in. I figured if I circled around my problems long enough, I’d lasso them into submission and think my way out.
But all it did was fill my mind with more troubling thoughts. As I reached the top of the mountain and turned back to walk down, my heart felt paralyzed and torn, weighing the pros and cons of uncertainty.
Do you ever feel this way too — heart disconnected and longing for rest?
I don’t know what to do. Help me, God, I cried silently.
As I made my way down through tall grass growing unruly, I noticed something I didn’t see on my way up. Specks of orange poppies were blossoming, opening up under the sunlight breaking through the clouds.
How did I miss the poppies walking up?
It turns out poppies close tight as buds when it’s cold and windy. They’re so sensitive to the elements, folding in at night in the dark. Yet, when warmed by the sun in daylight, the petals open, releasing seeds to the wind.
Each of us is like that poppy. Our hearts can close up when we isolate ourselves with our worries, carrying our burdens alone. When we hide our hearts from God, we also end up feeling guilty because we don’t know what to do or how to pray.
But when we cast our cares into the warmth of God’s loving arms, the petals of our hearts open, and we can relax. Even when it might seem as though God is silent, He hears our prayers for help — even when they’re unspoken.
Perhaps you need to hear these truths as much as I do today, so here are three promises from God to help you rest and breathe in His love and peace:
1. When you don’t know what to do, God whispers, Cast your cares on Me.
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
1 Peter 5:7 (NIV)
Just like flowers opening by sunlight in the field, you can release your worries to God — not by ignoring them but by confiding in Him. He longs to help you.
2. When you don’t have words to pray, know that Jesus is praying for you and holds you close.
Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus . . . He is also interceding for us.
Romans 8:34 (NIV)
Jesus doesn’t require your prayers to love you. He knows what you need. He is praying for you and wants you to receive the love and peace He offers to you unconditionally. When you feel overwhelmed and alone (we all have these moments that hit us just when we thought we felt fine, right?), rest in this loving promise of God.
3. When you long for someone to hold you, Jesus reaches out His hand to help you.
Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 (NLT)
Jesus will never give up on you. He will never grow weary of you or your worries. He whispers, I see you. Rest in me. My love will strengthen you.
Picture Jesus with you now, standing in the midst of your troubles and anxieties. Ask yourself, What is it that He longs to give me? What does He want me to receive?
Whatever it is, open yourself to His loving care and let His whispers of rest bring peace to your soul.
What are the cares you can cast on Jesus?
Restore God’s peace to your soul: Listen to Bonnie’s uplifting podcast Lift the Burden of Anxiety & Busy, featuring Holley Gerth! Then, sign up for Bonnie’s Beloved Newsletter here for more reminders of God’s love and soul care tips to encourage your heart! Join Bonnie’s newsletter here.
Jesus will never give up on you. He will never grow weary of you or your worries. -@thebonniegray: Click To Tweet Leave a Comment
Bev @ Walking Well With God says
It is such a comfort to know that Jesus is interceding with prayers to the Father on my behalf – what an awesome gift as a believer. Also, the Holy Spirit interprets our groans that we can’t make into words and takes those to the Father as well. I can rest assured that when, like the poppies in the field, I open my petals and cast all my cares on Him, He hears, He sees, and He sees to it. What wonderful loving promises.
I know that I truly need to cast all my cares away. Like everyone, I am stressed/concerned about the long term impact of the pandemic. As a single momma, I am fearful of becoming ill and wondering who will care for my daughter.
I pray that God is with the scientists as they work on treatments and vaccines and that he is wrapping us all in a blanket of protection.
Bev @ Walking Well With God says
I wish I lived closer to you, I’d help you out in a heartbeat. Claiming God’s hedge of protection for all of us!
Pearl Allard says
This was beautiful! Thank you, Bonnie.
Gillian Mackenzie says
It’s reassuring to read that He hears us when we can’t find the words to pray. That’s been me for some weeks now. I already have Generalised Anxiety Disorder and depression, so the pandemic has made all of that so much worse. I just can’t pray at all, I’m so depressed and have been suicidal. Just feel completely lost. I’m in therapy, for past trauma. So much to cope with and I’m drowning. Please pray that I feel closer to Jesus as I am slipping away xx
God loves you. And you are needed here. I’m sorry you’ve been going through such a horrible time. Keep on fighting; keep on resting in God whenever you can.
Hugs to you!
Gillian Mackenzie says
Thank you for your kindness. Xxx
Claire meechan says
Gillian you sound like we could be twins ! I’m the same here ,going through trauma therapy is tough on the system and I know how hard it is to feel slipping away but I know Jesus is will us we will get through this and he hasn’t abandoned us he’s silently crying with us and holding us ,close your eyes and allow yourself to feel him near ,ask Jesus to show you little things each day like these poppies
Thankyou @thebonniegray you never fail to speak to my heart ) ,little bits of beauty to remind you to walk one day at a time with sweet Jesus
Gillian Mackenzie says
I’m sorry you’re going through the same! It really is just exhausting all the time and I think I’ve just become too tired to set aside time, alone, to pray. My daughter’s boyfriend of 4 years has just ended the relationship and my poor girl is just devastated and lost. So I’m summoning up all my strength for her right now. It’s so hard, because she and her sister leave for university in 2 weeks. So I’ve just started to pray in short bursts today to get through. Pandemic, trauma therapy, anxiety disorder, breakups and an empty nest. Too much all at once!
I hope you’re getting through ok and I do really appreciate you taking the time to share and reach out to me. I pray you are safe and well. Xx
Dawn Ferguson-Little says
Thank you for such a beautiful reading Bonnie. It reminds me a song of Jesus love to us. It is ” Jesus love me this I know for the Bible tells me so”. It is so great to that in his word the Bible Jesus loves us and we can through his word the Bible know we are loved and we can stand on so many of his lovely Promises to help us get through what ever we are going through. Jesus will be there to help us get through them along with Prayer and us standing on his word the Bible. One promise I love so much is Philippians 4 verse 19 which says “And this same God who takes care of me will supply all of your needs from his glorious riches which have been given to us in Christ Jesus”. How true is that for us who are his Children. There are many more lovely Promises as well for us to stand on. If we study the Bible. Like the song “Jesus Loves me this I know for the Bible tells me so” So he does. Jesus love me so much and you he went to Calvary for us. John 3 verse 16 tell us that. “For God so Loved the World he gave his only son so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life”. No greater love is this. So if we have problem we can take it Jesus. Xxx
Camilla Hubbard says
Dear Heavenly Father, Joining with Elizabeth in prayers for safely coming through the pandemic, and my prayer for Gillian is that You will make known to her that You are standing by her in her unspoken prayers, that You will not let her slip away from You, that You enfold her in Your loving arms and bring her peace. May You bless her abundantly in this time of trial, so she can know that You are the One True God who will be there for her, always. In Jesus’ Name.
Nancy Ruegg says
I love that visual of the poppies opening to the warmth of the sun, Bonnie. Might have to find a picture of poppies to remind me: with the petals of my heart open, I can cast my cares into the warmth of God’s loving arms and relax. I can open myself to His loving care and let His whispers of rest bring peace to my soul. Beautiful words and powerful truth. Thank you, Bonnie!