Peter reminds his readers that God cares for them. No doubt he recalled the teaching of Jesus on anxiety as recorded in his Sermon the Mount. He would have remembered how Jesus used birds and flowers to illustrate God’s care, and since he cared for them he would certainly care for his people. We should learn from Jesus and deduce spiritual truths from everyday events. The sun rose this morning, a reminder that God cares about his creatures. His providence is everywhere.
In addition to God’s providences, we have his many promises. He has promised to be with us all the time, to work everything for our good, to lead us safely through this world to heaven, to provide for our daily needs, to strengthen us when we need it, and to protect us from our spiritual opponents. Of course, in order to have the comfort of the promises, we must know what they are. I suspect that one cause of anxiety among Christians is that we do not know our Bibles as well as we should. Therefore we are ignorant of its promises and of the stories of individuals whom God helped in remarkable ways. These details have to be in our memories and the best way to ensure that they will be there is by frequent meditation on them.
It is also important to keep reminding ourselves of who God is. He is the faithful God, the wise God, the loving God, the forgiving God, the prayer-hearing God, the present God, the God who has planned our days with great skill, the tender God. Think of what he has done for us in Christ: chosen us, adopted us, and promised us glory. At present he is sanctifying us, making us like his Son. Jesus remains our Shepherd, our Teacher, our Intercessor, and our Defender. And the Holy Spirit indwells us and wants to comfort us. Jesus gave instruction about the ministry of the heavenly Comforter when he was also aware that his disciples were going to face troubles and tribulations.
Peter stresses here that God cares for his people. He cares for them as a good father cares for his children, as a good doctor cares for his sick patient, as a good guide cares for those he is leading, as a good commander cares for his soldiers, as a good teacher cares for his pupils, as a good employer cares for his workers.
How can we know that God cares for us? Make a visit to the cross and see the suffering Saviour, and you will know that God cares for us. Go and take a look into the records of the heavenly councils and see the triune God deciding to save you from your sins, a reminder that God cares for us. Look ahead to the eternal world of glory that is to come, with a particular place assigned for us, and we will see that God cares for us.