I am an arrogant man. I do not say this because I brag about myself, nor do I say this because I think that I am better than anyone else. My parents were right in teaching me that in every area there will always be someone who can do things better. No, I know too well that I am not the best. So how can I say that I am an arrogant man? I can say that about myself because I do not pray as unceasingly as God commands.
I know the words of Peter. I heard them all the time growing up. “Casting all your care on Him, for He careth for you.” That was the King James rendering that I memorized. But it was not until much later that God exposed me. “Casting” is a participle. 1 Peter 5:7 is a dependent clause. In order to understand the verse, you have to look at the verse before it. Since I was by that time reading ESV, I read, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you”. Of course, “therefore” is another connecting term. So I also have to look at the previous verse to get what Peter is saying. “Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”
To reconstruct Peter’s exhortation, consider the following. 1) Peter wants his saints to experience the grace of God on their lives. 2) God will not give grace to the proud, but to the humble. 3) Thus, Peter exhorts the saints to be humble toward one another. 4) Humility is not just toward others, but also toward God. 5) Thus, Peter also exhorts his saints to humility under God to receive His exalting grace.
Now comes the question. What is the connection between these verses and verse 7? “Casting” is showing us how we are to humble ourselves under God. We humble ourselves by casting our anxieties on Him who loves us. And with that, God exposed my sin.
The reason why I would rather stress than pray is that I am a prideful man. I think that I can fix things better than God. I think that I care more about myself than God does. I think that I can carry my anxieties better than God. In short, when I choose not to cast my worries on Him, I am proclaiming that I do a better job at being God than God himself.
This is such a subtle pride. It does not come with the bells and whistles of other forms of pride. This one slips in undetected. But just like the pride that it is, it erodes my confidence in the God who loves me and is strong to deliver me.
I humbly confess my sin. I am a prideful man. May God grant me grace as I cast my all on Him. And may He astound me with His power to carry my burdens and care to keep me unto the day of salvation.