Most, if not all of us today suffer from some kind of anxiety or fear. It could be related to your job, your health, your family or friends, finances and even your faith. Some of us suffer from panic attacks that come out of nowhere. They all begin as something very small but if left unmanaged, they can grow to the point where it impacts every part of your life. A few years ago, as a student I suffered the fear of writing assignments and essays. Despite studying for at least 10 years in higher education, I still hadn’t learnt how to deal with the fear of a pending deadline or the pressure of achieving the best mark. Is it the right format? Did I actual answer the question that was asked?
I came across a really helpful booklet called Anxiety and Panic Attacks: Trusting God when you’re afraidby Jocelyn Wallace (pictured). She is a Christian counsellor who has worked in residential treatment centres for girls in the USA. In this booklet, Wallace defines Anxiety as being “…fearful or apprehensive of something bad happening that it affects you physically.”(p5) It is something that your body begins to suffer after your mind has processed your thoughts and feelings that you might have. I am no expert on how to deal with Anxiety but through my biblical studies, I was able to uncover the truth about how the Lord understands anxiety and fear.
The most related verse to anxiety is Proverbs 12:25 which reads:
“Anxiety weighs down the heart,but a kind word cheers it up.”
God understands anxiety as the weighing down of your heart, our heart full of worry, not knowing what is happening or if anyone can control what is going on. It feels like we are being brought to the ground under the burden of fear. When we live without a relationship with God, our lives feel out of control – we are fearful about what will happen because we live in a world where bad things do happen, when reality hurts us. God designed the cure for anxiety to be found in Jesus. Through Jesus we can come to the Father and find comfort and strength. The Lord will never abandon us in what we are facing. We might feel that the only person we can trust is ourselves and we want to be safe from other people.
Peter wrote to his fellow Christians who themselves were suffering the reality of this world and he instructs them:
“Cast all your anxiety on him (God) because he cares for you” 1 Peter 5:7
Peter tells them and us today to cast or throw your anxiety to God because he cares and loves you. It is like throwing a bag full of books to a friend – the worries and fears that weigh your heart down, throw them to the Lord, and trust that he will catch them, hold them and deal with them. Even if we haven’t believed in Jesus; God is still there for us to come back to him. Come and receive his care, his love by completely trusting in him. It sounds easy to say trust in God, but without giving it a go how will we know?
What is the thing that causes anxiety or fear in your life? Throw it to the Lord because he cares and loves you. He loves you so much that he sent Jesus, his only son to die on the cross for you, so you can throw your fear of work, of health, of life to him and receive the hope and joy of eternal life.