Turning Cares into Prayers

All block quotes are from “Prayer, the Cure for Care” by Charles Spurgeon

Turn everything that is a care into a prayer. Let your cares be the raw material of your prayers, and as the alchemists hoped to turn dross into gold, so do you, by a holy alchemy, actually turn what naturally would have been a care into spiritual treasure in the form of prayer. Baptize every anxiety into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and so make it into a blessing.

Although I thoroughly enjoyed reading this sermon on Philippians 4:6-7 by Charles Spurgeon, I initially thought that the phrase “turn your cares into prayers” sounded a little corny. Evidently, in some strange way, this is what it took for the concept to stick in my mind; it has been foremost in my thoughts frequently since.

My tendency is to get caught up in the “what ifs” of life as I’m doing my daily tasks and allow them to spiral into anxieties. “What if my husband’s medical issues are more serious than we realize; what happens if our family ends up financially dependent on me while I am mostly homebound; what if my physical pain never stops; what if I go to bed tonight and wake up with vertigo or am unable to go back to sleep as sometimes happens; what if my pain causes me to have to cancel a meeting with friends or family who were looking forward to our reunion; what if our children turn away from Christ as they leave our nest?” Before I know what has happened, my mind goes down one of these trails, leaving me feeling unsettled and, at times, fearful.

Instead of worrying, God desires for us to come to Him through prayer regarding everything (Phil. 4:6). It is sometimes hard to remember to pray when my mind starts thinking, but I have found that the more I pray and meditate on Scripture, the more I am aware of the Holy Spirit’s prompts for additional prayer.

What is the good of it, then, to keep gnawing at your own heart, when you can get nothing by it? Besides, it weakens our power to help ourselves and especially our power to glorify God. A care-full heart hinders us from judging rightly in many things. I have often used the illustration (I do not know a better) of taking a telescope, breathing on it with the hot breath of our anxiety, putting it to our eye and then saying that we cannot see anything but clouds. Of course we cannot, and we never shall while we breathe upon it. If we were but calm, quiet, self-possessed, and God-possessed, we should do the right thing.

Coming to God in prayer is one thing, but, sometimes, knowing how to pray is another. Mid-sentence, I sometimes stop, realizing that what I was about to pray might not be pleasing to God.

Do not desire to have what you dare not ask God to give you. Measure your desires by a spiritual standard and you will thus be kept from anything like covetousness.

Sometimes, when you have gone on praying for what God does not give you, it may be that there will steal over your mind the conviction that you are not on the right track and that result of your prayer will in itself do you good, and be a blessing to you.

Other times, when it seems that I have repeatedly prayed for the same thing without obvious response, I have to consider that God’s ways are not my own.

He may keep you waiting for a while, but delays are not denials, and He has often answered a prayer that asked for silver by giving gold. He may have denied earthly treasure, but He has given heavenly riches of ten thousand times the worth and the suppliant has been more than satisfied with the exchange.

I am increasingly finding that prayer has an incredibly calming effect, and I turn to it throughout my day. I now desire communion with God so much that I find myself eager to go to bed at night simply because this is one time that I specifically dedicate to prayer. I imagine myself resting in His loving arms; protected by my Father, I peacefully go to sleep. My cares are in His Hands, giving me a peace that I cannot describe.

Other people will not understand it. They will not be able to make out how you can be so quiet. What is more, you will not be able to tell them, for if it surpasses all understanding, it certainly passes all expression. And what is even more wonderful, you will not understand it yourself.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7

2 thoughts on “Turning Cares into Prayers

  1. Great post, Kim. Prayer does have a calming effect on us, but also praise and Thanksgiving. Turn our cares into prayers and then into praise and Thanksgiving. We know He hears our prayers, so, after taking our needs to God, don’t pick them up again, when we begin to worry about the things we’ve prayed about, start praising and thanking Him for working on our need.

    Liked by 1 person

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