I’m an organized person. “A place for everything and everything in its place” is my motto. Even as a little girl I don’t remember my mom constantly nagging me to tidy my room. Tidy and uncluttered came naturally. Of course, when I got older, a busier schedule and other priorities kept me from color-coding by category all my files in my three-drawer filing cabinet. Ah, the bliss of being a teenager without a job and a husband.
This I’ve found to be true as well. Everyone – whether organized or unorganized by nature – tends to categorize, organize, and overall classify their problems into two groups – big and small. A small problem might be a water leak under the sink, while a larger problem might be a loss of a job. Then an even larger problem might by a sudden diagnosis from the doctor. Whatever the issue, we send them off to the “big problem” file or the “small problem” file. Or, if we’re really organized, we toss them into the “medium problem” file. There they stay until we finally figure out how to solve them.
Here is where we differ from God. To God, all these problems are the same. He doesn’t see one issue as more important or more difficult than the other. They are all “cares” that effect our lives, and He has asked us to cast them all on Him: “Casting all your care upon him; for he cares for you.” I Peter 5:7
Unfortunately for us, we like to ignore the simplicity of the word “all,” and insist on dividing up our issues into categories. It doesn’t take much convincing to cast our big issues on God – because, after all, we can’t quite figure out how to solve them. However, we’ll take the small ones and dutifully and heroically conquer them with our meager power, all the while ignoring the word “all.” This attitude brings us all back to the matter of humility found in I Peter 5:6: “Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time . . .”
Whether the problem is big or small, true humility acknowledges that God is the Lord of all of them. It takes faith in God’s integrity that He will not let us down – even when the issue seems too minute to catch His attention. That’s when God is truly able to work on our behalf, regardless of what is going on around us. This is when God has the most fun because He can exercise His power for us, blessing us every step of the way.
Once we allow God to handle every situation, we have yet another challenge. That is to refuse to take the problem back. If God doesn’t come through for us in the time we think He should, the human thing to do is to panic and snatch back the issue. Of course, that never accomplishes anything but to slow God’s plan down. It’s reversing our faith from believing to doubt. There’s nothing humble about doubt as it stops believing that God cares and is able to fix our situation. That’s when we need to get back on track and fix our trusting.
The wonderful thing about God is that He is gracious and patient. He always keeps His Word. When we get passed our doubts and pride, He is faithful to fulfill His promises to reward our faith by exalting us in “due time.” Regardless of the problem, we can be at peace knowing that He is “a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6b) That’s the beauty of opening our file drawers and dumping out their contents on God. They were never meant to be so organized, anyway.