I’m still speaking about Pauline’s comment. She asked, “Would [commonsense and God’s care] include taking care of others — would it be better to just give them over to our Shepherd and pray for/with them?” This is such a good question. Remember in the post My Body is His Body how I gave this aside, “I wonder which was more challenging, being sick or watching someone I love be sick?” I think witnessing someone I love go through an illness is often more difficult. You feel utterly powerless in caring and in fact, you are. The only power we have is to go to the Shepherd in prayer.
Caring for Another
Yet I can’t tell you how painful it can be when someone tries to care for or help you in willful, even well-intending flesh. It sucks life rather than gives it. But when we simply surrender to the Shepherd, and follow His lead, giving even a cup of cool water can be eternal. Our Shepherd cares for us and through us for others.
If you remember back to my example of going numb, if Martha had responded in logic, it would have perpetuated fear in me. Christ’s stability in her ministered the Father’s mind about the scenario. The fact will always remain, we don’t know His mind about our care unless we seek His face. I have personally been the sole support of another, as well as relegating my care to prayer alone.
The Crux of Caring
Pauline’s comment is the crux of the issue. There is no commonsense to our care; there is only His mind and Will. I can’t say this is not a difficult reality because it will rub against every fearful, self-preserving bone in our bodies. Utter dependence on God tests our actual faith in God—and our belief in who He is.
The practical working out of caring for self is that we are kept. Daily or moment-by-moment, surrender is the only way we can live this out. This is not uncommon to other areas of the Christian life. We were made to be dependent on a loving Shepherd and an Abba Father.
From day one, our design was for reliance not independence. This covers every base and every aspect of our lives.
You can throw the whole weight of your anxieties upon Him, for you are His personal concern.
1 Peter 5:7 PHILLIPS