Freedom From Anxiety
In the midst of this global pandemic, the world at large seems to be preaching the same message: Covid 19 is our new reality.
We are not safe, the future is uncertain, and we should be worried. Our economic stability, emotional and physical well-being are beyond our control.
It seems that we can’t escape this message. It’s everywhere.
In fact, many of us voluntarily start and end our days by catching up with the latest news, seeing what other surprises 2020 and the infamous corona virus have in store for us. Fixating our vision on these things, while it’s often beneficial to be well informed, will only result in fear and anxiety.
It’s not easy to be optimistic during these times, and it can be even more difficult to bring ourselves to a place of worship, offering up praise and thanksgivings in the midst of what feels like chaos all around us.
In the eyes of the world, this would be foolishness; giving praise to a supposedly omnipotent being who in his infinite wisdom and goodness allows his people to suffer. We, however; who are partakers in the life of The One who is restoring all things, are not persuaded by this line of thinking.
Let me offer two healing practices from this
01 We fight anxiety by praying.
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, who was imprisoned for his radical faith and willingness to unapologetically preach the good news, found himself writing a letter to the people of Philippi. Despite being bound by chains, this was his message: “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say rejoice.” That’s wild!
It would seem that Paul would have every right to be upset in his current situation. We too, likely find ourselves in a situation that’s less than ideal, potentially worried and unsure about how we’re going to get even our most basic needs met, but Paul has something to say about that too.
“The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”
When we do this, Paul says that “the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
02 Fixing our focus frees us from fear.
When we allow ourselves to focus on our fears, what tomorrow may or may not bring, and our thoughts become consumed with the newest headlines, I’m telling you; we are focusing on the wrong things. Instead, we ought to be fixating our eyes on the one who saves. The one who is perfect and blameless.
We need to gaze upon on the one who provides even for the birds in the air; for are we not of more value than they?
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Whatever you have learned and received and heard and seen in me — practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.”
In the midst of our current crisis, let us choose to fixate our vision on Jesus. May we rejoice in the only one who is truly true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and worthy of praise, and may the God of peace be with us.