My 18-year-old niece, Tereza, had just left to go back home. We’d spent a few days together and my heart really went out to her. Her mom has a very difficult progressive disability; she is bedridden and needs a lot of assistance. She’s been sick for about six years now, and it has taken a toll on the whole family. I felt so burdened for all of them!
Before Tereza left, while reading together an article which referenced the scripture “casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you” 1, an intriguing picture came to mind of Jesus dressed in a sports uniform and me holding a ball. The ball represented my worries. The impression I got was that all I had to do was pass that ball to Jesus and He would take care of it. So, I did, and it was such a relief. Only Jesus can take that ball and shoot it into the basket for the win!
I told my niece about this. I explained how she could imagine each family member that she worries about as a ball that she could pass on to Jesus, one by one. Mom-ball—to Jesus. Dad-ball—to Jesus. Her brother-ball—again to Jesus. And yet another ball, her graduation from high school this year and going to university—to Jesus.
I explained that there is no other way that she can carry the weight of all that pressure and stress on an ongoing basis. I believe it helped her. Thankfully, she has a wonderful close relationship with Jesus, which, I believe, is partly due to the difficulties she’s been facing.
Then I reflected on my own life and tried to apply this lesson to myself. My daughter and her future—another ball. I imagined shooting it straight back to Jesus, it’s His concern. My relationships, my work, my Bible study group, ongoing problems or unresolved issues, each of them is a ball. Over and over again, I concentrated on the mental picture—I am passing each ball on to Jesus!
I made a resolution, by God’s grace, that when I encounter any worry, stress, pressure, discomfort, pain, sickness, frustration, or anger, I’ll make a conscious effort to immediately pass that ball to Jesus. I don’t want to carry any of those burdens, not even for one minute! It’s not my problem, it’s His, and He is waaaaay more capable of handling them than I am!
As Rick Warren says: “A worrying Christian is an oxymoron.” So, I refuse to worry! And I am looking forward to all the baskets Jesus will shoot for me and my loved ones!
- 1 Peter 5:7 NKJV