In the Shinto religion of Japan, they have what they call a “god shelf.” It’s a shrine where they place offerings to their god. This is not what I am suggesting.
My God-shelf is not a tangible shelf at all. What it is, is a symbolic way to surrender our burdens to God.
Imagine installing a simple shelf in your home that is nearly out of reach when you raise your hand as high as you can. You can reach this shelf only by stretching just a little. Now imagine that you have been carrying your troubles and worries around with you as you move about your home.
What I am suggesting is that you mentally design and install a God-shelf as a place to deposit all these issues. You walk by your shelf and reach up and place your worries on that shelf for God to deal with, out of sight and slightly out of reach so you can’t easily take them back.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful to be able to leave all your cares on your God-shelf where He is able to deal with everything and you can trust that He will? As you walk by, you simply reach up and say, “Lord, here is my marriage, I trust You to heal it.” Or, “Lord, here is my wayward child, I trust him into Your hands.” Or perhaps, “Lord, here is this difficult diagnosis, I give it to You and ask You to take care of it.”
In every home I’ve every lived, there has always been a small cabinet over the refrigerator. The things I store in that cabinet are usually things I don’t use often. Because they are out of sight, I often forget what I have put there. I think this is what God truly wants us to do with the things we put on our God-shelf. Just put it up there, and then allow God to replace your worries with His peace.
“Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.” – Psalm 55:22 (ESV)