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The fearful unknowns, unending what-ifs, sleepless nights, and nervousness lead to a sense of impending doom. Then muscles tense, thoughts race, hearts pound, and breath is shortened—it’s anxiety. And it affects an estimated 40 million adults in the U.S. alone. Anxiety is complex and multifaceted, affecting every area of life. The good news is God invites you to bring your anxiety to Him. In these Keys for Living, learn the types of anxiety disorders, common characteristics and causes, and ways to manage anxiety. Discover how God’s Word can help calm the fearful, anxious heart.
The term anxiety covers a wide range of problems resulting from unfounded fears. Someone has said that the anxious person and the worrier are so preoccupied about what may happen in the future that they forget to cope with the present. It is characteristic of such a person to worry about anything. They build “mountains out of mole hills,” as insignificant matters assume great importance in their lives. They are anxious about imagined shortcomings, the future, their health, their families, and their work. They are often unable to pinpoint the reasons for their anxieties and fears. Many anxious people suffer physical difficulties such as nervousness, sleeplessness, headaches, difficulty in breathing, or excessive sweating.
Inability to find relief from the anxiety can lead to more serious consequences, such as a “nervous breakdown.” Obviously, such people need our sympathy, our prayers, and whatever help we are able to offer. The Lord can help! “Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him for the help of His countenance” (Psalm 42:5).
A genuine, healthy fear of God conquers all other fears!
“Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you”
1 Peter 5:7
“Did you receive the Spirit by observing the law, or by believing what you heard? Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort?”
“I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears”
“Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God”
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself”
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus”
Psalm 55:22, NIV