Lord, when my mind is troubled, help me fix my eyes upon You.
You are my deliverer, the One who cares for me.
Father, please take my burdens and my anxious thoughts.
You are the Prince of Peace and I rest in You!
Series Focus: “Resurrecting Hope in the Midst of Life’s Storms”
When I encountered the thief, I didn’t know it was him at first, and I definitely didn’t realize the impact he would have on me. I was just living my life, enjoying the experience of raising my daughters and creating a loving home. How he crept in and what triggered his decision to torment me remain a mystery. While his arrival went seemingly unnoticed, the affects of his presence did not. He set up camp in my unsaved soul, and for several years he had a grip on me that would rival the jaws of a great white shark upon his prey. If only I had known about this brutal enemy sooner.
While confidence wasn’t my strongest quality as a young mom, I thought I had a pretty good handle on things. Clean clothes, food in the fridge, educational shows on television, proper bedtimes and age appropriate activities were all priorities. Then “it” hit. I was driving, running errands as usual, when my heart began pounding so hard in my chest it caused me to pull over. I remember trying to catch my breath and all I could think about was “what if”. What if something happens to me and I don’t get to see them grow up? What if I am doing this all wrong? What if I mess them up? The stream of what if’s beat on me like a hailstorm. And it wouldn’t stop.
Have you ever felt this way? Like a foreign object has implanted itself in your soul and nothing you do can remove it? Do chest pains, racing thoughts, stomach aches, comparing how you do things with every other woman on the planet become a daily occurrence? Nothing stops the mind games from playing over and over within you. Good days are sprinkled in among the hard ones so at times you feel relief but never cured. Countless doctor appointments, medication, EKG’s, you name it we get it. Needing answers as we float deeper and deeper into the far end of the worry pool.
My diagnosis was anxiety and panic attacks. I had become an expert at worrying about everything. In fact, to this day my youngest daughter, now in her early twenties, has made mention more than once at how I never let her “run” – Yep…the ripple affect of my worry that somehow she would fall and not recover. Have you been there? Too worried to live life well? Consumed with the heaviness that comes from uncertainty? The thief comes to steal, kill and destroy. We can’t forget that he is real and he is out to take our peace. It is time to eliminate him.
So, how do we battle this storm of worry? How do we overcome it? Drawing close to our Savior and allowing Him to fight for us is where we start! God’s word is alive and powerful. His word can defeat the stronghold of worry and anxiety, and He will help us as we fight. For some of us, the battle is quick and painless, but for others it can linger and torment us for years. As we cling to scripture and truth we are strengthened and we can burn down the enemy’s camp one thought at a time. Just because it takes time doesn’t mean we aren’t victorious! We are children of God. We do not have to own the anxiousness we feel. We can release these labels to God because as His children we are healed. We must fight against calling ourselves these things. Speak life over yourself and those you love. I may feel anxious, but I will not be filled with anxiety. I may have worries, but I will turn those thoughts over to Him to release me. We must breathe in scriptures that speak directly to this area of hardship in our lives. This is a real battle ladies. I am not discounting it. I fought it. I know how debilitating it is. Soak in these scriptures:
‘Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.’ (1 Peter 5:6-8 ESV)
‘do not be anxious about anything, 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 your minds in Christ Jesus.’ (Philippians 4:6-7 ESV)
‘When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.’ (Psalm 94:19 NIV)
Do you believe God’s word to be true for you? He promises to satisfy our weary soul, and He will replenish us. We must seek Him in order to be released from this stronghold. Knowing the power of Christ and the word of God is our finest weapon against the one who seeks to destroy us. God may take this worry away in an instant, or it may be a process – possibly including medical providers to aid us. We must allow Him to come into our healing process. He is the answer to every anxious moment. If you have given your life to Jesus, He promised to carry your burden. Turn them over to Him today.
Holding Fast to Hope,
Scripture References: John 10:10; 1 Peter 5:6-8; Philippians 4:6-7; Psalm 94:19; Jeremiah 31:25; Psalm 147:3; Matthew 6:25-34;