Author Ava Pennington
Author Ava Pennington
Best Advice - Give it to God

Best Advice Ever

 

A friend recently gave me a Christmas gift with one of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever received. The wisdom that I intend to take with me into the new year is written on a sign that says:

Give it to God . . . and go to sleep.

Truth be told, the first half of the advice wasn’t new. Not only had I heard it before, I’ve given this advice to others.

“Give it to God.” Sound familiar? Maybe someone has told you something similar. It may have been “Give it to God” or perhaps “Let go and let God.”

There is no Bible verse written on my sign. Yet the concept of releasing our concerns to God is found throughout Scripture. For example:

  • Psalm 46:10 – “Be still, and know that I am God.”
  • Proverbs 16:9 – “The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.”
  • Isaiah 26:3 – “You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.”

Here’s the problem. It’s one thing to say I’ve released my worries to God. But it’s a whole ‘nother thing to actually do it. And the test to know if I’m really trusting God fully and completely?

The answer is simple: it’s when I can go to sleep.

That’s it. That’s the test. If I say I’ve given it to God, but I lie awake all night staring at the ceiling, thoughts racing, then I’m not being honest with myself.

Jesus in the boat

Remember the account of Jesus asleep in the boat in Matthew 8:23-26?

And when he got into the boat, his disciples followed him.
And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that
the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep.
And they went and woke him, saying, “Save us, Lord; we are perishing.”
And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?”
Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.

The ultimate sign of trust in the heavenly Father: Jesus asleep as violent wind and waves threatened to capsize the boat even as experienced fishermen cowered like little children fearing for their lives. Jesus knew there was no reason to worry.

What about you and me? Are we cowering in fear? Lying awake at night? Doubting God’s goodness and care?

Or do we have the same unshakeable assurance that the One who controlled the wind and waves 2,000 years ago is still sovereign today?

If I say I have that assurance, there’s one way to prove it. As the old year closes with all its heartache and the new year begins to unfold with all its uncertainty, I will choose daily to:

Give it to God . . . and go to sleep.

How about you?

 

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10 Comments

  1. Dave

    Several times, as I was driving on icy roads in Michigan, beside me, my wife would begin to fret about the danger of sliding into a tree or another car. Then she would say, “I can’t handle it.” And she would lie with her head in my lap and go to sleep.

  2. Ava Pennington

    What a beautiful illustration of trust, Dave!

  3. Barbara

    I love this Ava! Thanks so much for sharing this. Happy & Healthy 2022.

  4. Ava Pennington

    Happy & healthy 2022 to you, too, Barbara!

  5. Karen Friday

    Powerful advice indeed, Ava. I’ve often given “it” to God then returned to retrieve it. And that definitely heaps a heavy burden on my shoulders I was never meant to carry. So next time I lie awake at night, I know what I need to do.

  6. Christine olazagasti

    This is a wonderful way to start the new year and a true test for us!! Thank you for sharing this Ava. I pray God will bless the world this year with health and peace.

  7. Jessica Brodie

    So good! It’s true… if we take it to God in prayer, we can trust He hears us. We can rest in the secure knowledge it is handled, whatever way He plans. No more stress required! 🙂

  8. Melissa Henderson

    Amen. Give it to God. I admit sometimes I give things to God and take them right back. I am thankful He forgives me and helps me along the way.

  9. Melinda Viergever Inman

    A beautiful post, Ava! When multiple tragedies hit our family just as the pandemic took off in early 2020, I was unable to sleep for worrying and stewing and wrestling with God about it all. I had to pray for the Lord to enable me to truly let go and give Him have all of my cares and worries about the horrors that had occurred to members of our family. And, just as it was for you, the sign that I had let go and truly had given it over to God was that I fell asleep. Some of my kids even kept an eye on me at night. If they saw I was out looking at social media in the wee hours of the morning, they would tell me to pray. I would listen to them, give it to God, and go to sleep. Adult children are a blessing! I learned.

  10. Yvonne Morgan

    That is really great advice and a good way to test it. Sometimes, I think I give it to God but I continue to toss and turn instead of sleep. I will remember this advice. Thanks Ava.

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