We all do it, worrying about work, bills, health issues, and family members. Worry and anxiety are a daily occurrence for so many people, even to the point of debilitating anxiety attacks, but why do we worry? We know God has our backs. Why are we stressing about the cares of this world and dwelling on circumstances that are out of our control? Why do we try to control situations and take them out of God’s hands? Too often I find myself stressing or feeling overwhelmed about circumstances in my life, and each time I have to remind myself that God is in control and my anxiety is the result of trying to handle situations on my own.
But how should we deal with that worry? Living by faith and spending time daily with God in prayer are crucial steps toward letting go of our cares and anxiety and having the peace of God.
In the moment of anxiety remember 1 Peter 5:7 says, “Cast all your cares on Him for He cares for you,” and trust that God is there for you in the midst your trials.
Trusting the Lord allows us to thank Him in the midst of trials because we have God’s peace protecting our hearts, as displayed by Jonah. Even through his weaknesses and despite his situation, Jonah’s prayer in the belly of the great fish was thankful because he was confident in God’s ability to deliver him if He chose.
His prayer in Jonah 2:1-9 said, “In my distress I called to the Lord and he answered me. From the depths of the grave I called for help, and you listened to my cry. You hurled me into the deep, into the very heart of the seas, and the currents swirled about me; all your waves and breakers swept over me. I said, ‘I have been banished from your sight; yet I will look again toward your holy temple.’ The engulfing waters threatened me, the deep surrounded me; seaweed was wrapped around my head. To the roots of the mountains I dank down; the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you brought my life up from the pit, O Lord my God. When my life was ebbing away, I remembered you, Lord, and my prayer rose to you, to your holy temple. Those who cling to worthless idols forfeit the grace that could be theirs. But I, with a song of thanksgiving, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. Salvation comes from the Lord.”
If we react to our circumstances with thankful prayer instead of anxiety or fear, this is where we will find the peace of God on our hearts.
John Macarthur reflected in his book Anxious for Nothing, “Know that all your difficulties are within God’s purpose, and thank Him for His available power and promises. Being thankful will release you from fear and worry. It is a tangible demonstration of trusting your situation to God’s sovereign control.”
We must let go and give our cares to Him through thankful prayer, focusing on God’s many blessings and provisions and remembering that we are asked to faithfully live our lives for Him and in Him. We can have peace knowing everything happens according to His plan alone, and He will sustain us. C.S. Lewis said, “Life with God is not immunity from difficulties, but peace within difficulties.”
How do you react to unexpected situations in your life that could cause anxiety?