Answering Anxiety

I often allow anxieties to accumulate in my mind and spirit. This steals my joy and energy, and warps my perception of reality. For that reason, I experience deep longing whenever I read “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you (1 Peter 5:7, NIV).”

Flickr/Creative Commons

Flickr/Creative Commons

This morning I went on to read the rest of the paragraph, which depicts the devil as an adversary who should be resisted and who can be defeated. We defeat the adversary by refusing to give up our faith and reminding ourselves that God’s authority is eternal (1 Peter 5:8-11).

“Casting” is a pleasant term; it reminds me of a lazy morning at the lake, fishing. “Resisting” is an aggressive term which is often used to describe warfare or athletic competition. Both are pictures of spiritual warfare.

When I sense anxiety approaching, I can quickly assign the worry to God, confident of the Lord’s help. However, I also need to resist the the sense that God is no longer in control. Today, that seems to be the spiritual battle revolving around anxiety: “Are my emotions fully responsive to my belief that God is in control?”

Here’s what I plan to do to help my emotions line up with God’s reality: I’m going to list each one of my fears and for each one, remind myself that God’s control is greater than that fear. This way I aggressively resist the fear and lovingly look to God’s assistance.

What a relief to remember that God is in control, and I do not need to be. What a relief to respond to the invitation to cast my anxieties upon him.

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