How to Biblically Fight Anxiety
What is anxiety? I mean we hear the word, we say the word, we claim it for ourselves, but do we really know what anxiety is? Anxiety is a feeling of worry, nervousness, uncertainty or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome. A feeling of apprehension or distress in view of possible danger or misfortune. (Dictionary) So, are you feeling some of these feels? Are you experiencing anxiety somewhat? If so, seek out why. Maybe there is a day or event approaching that may be causing these feelings. Are you anxious about an up and coming test, a business venture, your wedding, the anniversary of a loved ones death, or an soon due bill? Maybe you are anxious about not being able to fulfill a promise, losing your job because it has been slow, or not being "accomplished" before a certain age. Whatever it may be find the source, know that you are not alone, and you are able to fight this.
During my last spring semester, and some of the summer I had been completed overwhelmed by anxiety. In the beginning, I did not understand why, but I knew my anxiety had been crippling me from doing anything productive. I believe it started when I was not approved for a scholarship last semester. I had been dependent on scholarship funding since I started seminary, although I still pay something out of pocket, but what will I do without ANY funding. Like any normal person, we try to take control, and solve the immediate problem the best way we know how. So, I started searching for part-time jobs, driving Uber to make extra money, and trying to come up with business schemes. Forgetting school, and all of my responsibilities for classes, I chased and pursued ways to cover my tuition, so I wouldn't fall behind on bills. However, the more I pursued the money for my tuition, it seemed like the further I was from achieving the goal. Furthermore, the more I focused my attention on the problem, the more anxious I became, and I began to lack in school because of it. After working day and night to pay the tuition, I would not have any energy left to dedicate to my school work. When I got behind on school work, the thought of a test gave me even more anxiety. Because I was worried about the test, when I sat down to study my mind would be heavy with fear and defeat that I could not even focus my attention properly on the info. As a result of everything, I craved sleep more than ever because sleeping was the only way I could escape my racing and distressed mind. In the end, my grades were very poor, and nothing like I had done in previous semesters. Do you see how my fear of being unable to afford my tuition cause a ripple effect? Anxiety is damaging like that.
Here are a list of people in the Bible who also struggled with anxiety: David (Psalm 42 defeated and troubled by his enemies), Elijah (1 Kings 19:3-9 discouraged and afraid), Jeremiah (Jeremiah 20:14-18 loneliness, insecurity, and defeat). Everyone in some form of fashion has dealt with anxiety in some form or fashion. Your worries and fear may be accurate feelings, but praise be to God that you do not have to stay in the state of uncertainty. You cannot operate in joy, peace, and faith when you are living in anxiety which is why you must fight our way out. Anxiety can negatively affect your health, cause the object of your worry to consume your thoughts, disrupt your productivity, negatively affect the way you treat others, and reduce your trust in God. Are you experiencing any of these ill effects?
Here are some ways you can fight back from a biblical standpoint:
1. Humility- Humble yourself by simply submitting to God, accept the fact that whatever you are anxious about is out of your control because if the problem was something you could control you would not be anxious. Pride will keep you anxious.(1 Peter 5:5-7)
2. Pray about EVERYTHING- Bring it to God in prayer and in faith, then release it. You will find peace. (Philippians 4:6-7)
3. Read your Bible- Renew your mind and reflect on the promises of God. (Romans 12:1-2, Proverbs 12:25)
4. Trust that God truly loves you, cares, and has a plan for you. (Romans 8:28, Matthew 6:25:33)
Now, I am in my fall semester, and I am in a much better mental state by applying these simple steps to my life. Though, the enemy has tried to cause me to be anxious as I prepared to launch this business. However, I do only what I am able to do and what is in my power to do, and I trust God with the rest. I get up every morning and read my Bible, make a to-do list, tackle it, and have faith that God will provide my needs for each day. Every day he has fulfilled that promise, so I have no need to worry about tomorrow. I no longer live in anxiety, I just recently moved to peace, and I pray this help you to do the same.
- Beautiful Survivor