Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress. Stress comes in all forms, from what to make for supper, to how will I perform in the job interview. Anxious thoughts or anxiety over issues we cannot control will ultimately result in health issues. While this is not a health-related post, I can point you in the right direction to get the victory over your anxiety.
Follow along with me as we study the words “anxiety” and “anxious” from a Biblical perspective. Hopefully, this study will help you to cast your cares on the One who cares for you.
The Starting Point
Matthew 11:28, 30 says Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light. (KJV)
This is the starting point, the place where you begin, the place where you will walk on solid foundation. You are heavy laden, not physically with work, but spiritually with the burdens of your loved ones. This is the place where you go to Jesus, let Him give you rest.
Learn from Him — did He ever worry about His mother, his father, his brothers? We see no evidence that He worried or had anxious thoughts.
He even taught the people about not worrying. Here’s what He said in Matthew 6:24-34, take note of the word ‘worry’ or ‘worrying.’
To sum this up, do not worry about your life, what you will wear or what you will eat.
The necessary thing to do is seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all the necessary things you need will be given to you.
Easy to say, I know, as it is harder to do. But let’s continue on.
Unpack Philippians 4:6-7
Paul reminds us in Philippians 4:6-7 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Let’s unpack this powerful verse. Be anxious for absolutely NOTHING! He doesn’t want you to live that way, full of anxious thoughts. Take those anxious thoughts and through prayer give them to Him.
- Give Him thanks that He has made a way for you to do this.
- Give Him thanks that He wants to take care of your concerns.
- Give Him thanks that He will accomplish His will in their lives.
- Give Him thanks.
Now, before we finish unpacking that verse, let’s look at this one in 1 Peter 5:6-8, Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, 7 casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. …
The definition of humility means
not proud or arrogant, being courteously respectful, a feeling of insignificance or inferiority.
So, under the mighty hand of God, go respectfully to Him knowing that you are inferior to Him. Be humble before Him and He is going to do something amazing! He will exalt you in due time.
Humility is being respectful, not arrogant or proud
In your humility before Him, cast your cares, your concerns, your anxious thoughts before Him, at His feet, in His hands.
He cares for you. He desires that you would trust Him to hold your concerns for you so that you can have the peace of God that passes all understanding, all comprehension. He loves you so much!
When Thoughts Return
You’re not out of the woods yet, you’ve given Him your concerns and anxious thoughts but what happens when they come back to your mind?
We know they will because your adversary the devil is seeking whom he may devour. He is looking for a weak spot in your armour. He’ll cause you to be anxious. When that happens, speak the Word of truth to him (the devil) telling him that he is mistaken, that you no longer have those concerns, they belong to Jesus.
James 4:7-8 says Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.
So now, submit yourself to God, resist satan and he has no choice but to flee. You may have to repeat this a few times but stay strong, keep repeating it and when he sees that you are not backing down, he will leave you alone.
Draw yourself closer to God and He is going to do something too. He is going to draw Himself closer to you. You press in to Him, He will press Himself closer to you. What a picture that is! What comfort!
Philippians 4:6-7 … and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Now back to unpacking that verse. We left off talking about the peace of God. Jesus said in John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
The world offers peace but it isn’t the same, it isn’t lasting and it doesn’t guard your heart. Jesus’ peace cannot be bought at any price. It isn’t for sale. It IS free though but you have to do something to get it.
You need to give Him all anxious thoughts through prayer and then and only then will you be able to experience that peace that everyone longs for. The peace that guards your heart and mind.
Paul was such a great writer. He led by example. He lived what he taught and preached. Since he did it, we can too.
Whatever are Good Thoughts
Now for the rest of Philippians 4:8-9, Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy, meditate on these things. 9 The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.
You’ve given your cares, concerns and anxious thoughts to Jesus. He gives you His peace that passes all comprehension, a peace that only He can give as the world cannot buy it. This Scripture tells us what we ought to be thinking about.
Safe thoughts are things that are:
- of good report
Paul said he has the peace of God and if you want it too, then the things that you learned from him, received, heard and saw in him, DO them, too, and you’ll also have that same peace that Paul had. Amazing, huh? Paul was a doer of the word.
Do as Paul and James Did
James 1:22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
Paul said to do the things he taught, James said to be doers of what has been taught. That is significant.
If we are only sponges who soak up the word by hearing it, our faith is increased (Romans 10.17) but we haven’t put faith into action. The danger of being a hearer only is we will fall prey to deception.
Still with me? How are you standing today?
Paul tells us how to stand in Ephesians 6:6-18 11 Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, …
We are to dress properly if we want to find ourselves still standing at the end of the day. How are you dressed today? Are you suited up for battle? Are you ready to stand firm?
Solid foundation, cement, bricks, boulders. All these things appear to be immovable but they have faults. They crack, chip, and eventually move but the Word of God is immovable. It doesn’t change, it is forever the same. Jesus is the Word. He is your Truth. He is your Peace. He is all in all.
Wrapping it Up
So now, my dear sister, it is your turn.
Stand on the solid foundation of His Word, His Truth and see what amazing things God will do for you. You will have a testimony to share with others, as I have. It will be amazing! I am waiting to hear your testimony. It may take a few months to materialize or just a few weeks but when you’re ready, you’ll know it and I’d love to hear your story of His faithfulness.
What did we learn from this?
- Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress but as daughters of the King, we don’t have to live with anxious thoughts or worry.
- Jesus taught us not to worry but to seek the kingdom of God and His righteousness.
- Paul taught us to cast our cares on the One who cares for us.
- James taught us to be doers of the Word and not hearers only.
- Paul taught us that having done all we can, to remain standing.
- Paul also told us what we should be thinking about.
So…after all that, can you grab your victory over anxious thoughts?
Please drop me a line and let me know how you are doing. I’d love to hear from you.