Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Cast All Your Anxieties On Him

We've all experienced anxiety in one form or another. Flying can cause anxiety. Losing your cell phone can cause anxiety. Even worrying about your child can cause anxiety. It's a normal human emotion. Some might even call it nervousness. You might experience it if you're having a problem at work, before taking a test or worrying about making an important decision. I'm deathly afraid of snakes. That's a form of anxiety.

There are many forms of anxiety: Anxiety Disorders such as Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Specific Phobias, and Generalized Anxiety Disorder. For people suffering from these conditions the worrying and fear can sometimes lead to an agonizing life. You can seek medical attention or the help of a therapist to help you deal with your anxiety and worry issues. You can also seek the guidance and counseling of your local church minister. They understand how worry and anxiety can cause pain and suffering in a person's life. The jumbled thoughts, sleepless nights, and run-on list of worry that fills your mind are only part of what occurs when suffering from anxiety and worry.

According to James P. Gills, M.D., who wrote Exceeding Gratitude for the Creator's Plan, "the presence in our lives of the sin of commission - worry - can also be a result of failing to appreciate God. To worry is to not view life in relation to God's sovereignty, design, and faithfulness. Worry emanates from a life that is distracted and diverted into a self-centered perspective that is self-destructive, unproductive, and joyless."

Anxiety and worry are not uncommon in biblical times and are referenced quite thoroughly in the Bible. In the book of Deuteronomy, we see the Israelites hearing Moses' final words before they enter the promised land. He challenged them to obey the Lord faithfully and reject all forms of idolatry. Much is written in Deuteronomy about what would happen to the people for not obeying and how they would receive blessings if they did so. The Lord promised to give the people "an anxious mind, eyes weary with longing, and a despairing heart." (Deuteronomy 28:65)

God wants us to understand something about Him, and He works in ways so that we might know. But He wants us to repent so He can offer even greater insight to us when we believe by faith. The Israelites had seen many miracles and had been delivered miraculously from Egypt. Even so, their hearts remained unrepentant so that they could not understand or appreciate what God had done for them. Though God offered them understanding, He never gave it because of their stubbornness. Now Moses urged them to accept God's covenant and choose life.

Many of God's chosen people wrestled with anxiety and worry. Job suffered extreme loss which was humiliating and caused him great pain. "The churning inside me never stops, days of suffering confront me." Job 30:27

But, there is great comfort to find in God's words as well to ease the anxiety and worry in your life. In 1 Peter 5:7 we find the verse, "Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you." God knows you better than you know yourself. He suffers with you and wants to care for you.

Believing in God can help ease your anxiety. In John 14:1, the verse states "Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me." 

Talking to God about your troubles that cause you anxiety and worry can help. It doesn't have to be anything formal, the most fervent and heartfelt prayers are those spoken spontaneously from the heart. Remember this, "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 understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6,7

I have suffered from anxiety disorders and worry for many, many years. It's not a personal weakness, a character flaw, or brought on by poor upbringing. They are real issues that need a combination of care, strength, and faith.

I have persevered through many battles in my life, leaving me scarred, wounded, but not down. I draw on God's love and His son, Jesus Christ's support.

I'll leave you with this, "Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." John 14:27

God has great plans for you and your life. He does not want to see you suffering. Find a way to open your heart and let Him in and bring you joy, peace and happiness.

Your Sister in Christ,