ATTACKING ANXIETY

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Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God . . . (Philippians 4:6)

Cast all your anxieties on him because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7)

With the sole exception of the sinless humanity of our Lord Jesus Christ, anxiety is a human experience common to the Bible. Anxiety is refusing to trust God in all circumstances. In His Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 6:25-34), Jesus tells us not to be anxious (“Do not worry”) five times and provides the remedy for anxiety: trusting in the Lord.

This biblical admonition not to worry is more than good advice; it is a moral command. It is God’s preceptive will that we, His people, not be anxious about anything. Why? Because anxiety is sin! To be sure, there are many things in life that can open the door to anxiety. From deadlines at the office to difficulties at home, anxiety is always testing the outer edges of our emotional health. So what’s the cure? How does the Bible tell you to attack anxiety?

The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song.  (Psalm 28:7)

Here is just one of countless verses in sacred Scripture that offer the cure for conquering anxiety. Anxiety is to be met head-on, with the clear understanding that Jesus is both your strength and your shield. Jesus is your shield to protect you from the fiery “arrows of anxiety” that Satan shoots your way through every circumstance you face in life. And Jesus is your strength when these “arrows of anxiety” do find their mark. Anxiety is not to be attacked in your strength, but in the strength of the One who has nailed the sin of anxiety to the cross.

And what does this strength look like? The next few words in Psalm 28:7 provide the description:

My heart trusts in him, and I am helped.

We are to attack anxiety with a heart that trusts Jesus even when we cannot trace Him. When your sense of peace begins to turn into panic, turn your heart toward Jesus and trust in Him to get you safely to the other side of it. If God knows the number of hairs on your head (Matthew 10:29), you can be sure He knows exactly what you are going through. And the key to attacking anxiety is to always remember . . . You ARE going through it! Jesus will bring your through to the other side of every challenging circumstance you face.

Remember, anxiety is not God’s will for your life, no matter how frequently you have to deal with it. Satan wants you to distrust God and disdain His providence in your life. But this is not for you!!!

In the verses I cited at the beginning of this article, Paul says we are to attack anxiety with prayer. Is this the confession of your life today? When anxiety is attempting to overwhelm you, do you go to the throne of grace with it? The next time anxiety attacks, pray David’s prayer in Psalm 139:23, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.”

And in 1 Peter 5:7, we find both the motive and the motivation for casting our anxiety on Jesus . . .

BECAUSE HE CARES FOR YOU!

Your Savior . . . your Strength . . . your Shield cares for you so much that He took your nails, your crown of thorns, your cross, your death, and your tomb. Let that truth set you free from anxiety by attacking anxiety with the strength of your Shield. You will overcome, because greater is the power that is at work within you than any power that comes up against you!

This is the Gospel. This is grace for your race. NEVER FORGET THAT . . . AMEN!    

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