Does worry overwhelm your life? It certainly does mine. As I sit here with my head spinning and fingers struggling to type, my mind has become completely unmanageable.
My son recently spent the night in our local children’s hospital. This was an exciting test to see if he has outgrown the seizures which have plagued him over the past 6 years. When the doctor called the day we were released to share the wonderful news that his test was normal, I should have been elated. Instead, I went immediately to thinking the test is wrong and the slow release of his medication would somehow prove disastrous.
I lay beside my son at night and watch him breathe, slipping more into the darkness with each of his tired twitches. My cell phone stays close by to dial 911 at any moment.
This is overwhelming, unnecessary, and incapacitating worry…
My daughter shared with me today over lunch the schools she’s recently applied to as she starts a new and exciting career path. Again, this should be a wonderful moment while I cheer her plans, ability, independence, and strength that make her the young women I’m so very proud of. Instead all I can think of is how long it will take me by airplane to reach her in an emergency at these far away schools she’s chosen.
Overwhelming. Unnecessary. Incapacitating worry…
We know all the verses by heart, the ones that share the incredible hope and peace promised by God. Here are just a couple we should keep close by in those moments of fear and anxiety.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
But the real issue is: How do we live them out? We need to personalize and pray them.
A dear friend recently introduced me to praying scripture. I love this concept although it has yet to become the automatic habit I hope it will soon grow into. This easily reminds us that His Word is not just empty promises meant for those people of long ago. We can rest assured He wants us to find emotional freedom as well.
So let’s try this simple prayer adapted from John 14:27…
Dear God, I know you give peace like no other. I do not need to live in fear and with a troubled heart as I’ve been doing for far too long. You promise freedom from this and I know I can trust You with the scary, overwhelming moments of my life. Your peace is bigger than my fears, anxiety, and unnecessary worries. In Jesus name I pray for Your Word to fill my mind and heart with Your special one-of-a-kind peace…
Now you can try personalizing the above verses from Philippians 4 or any others that come to mind. I would love to hear from you in the comments with your version or any tip on how you deal with worry and anxiety. This simple exercise has started healing my spinning mind already. I’m definitely a work in progress as I fight to walk away from fear and towards His beautiful promises.