Anxiety is the undisciplined first cousin of depression. It is estimated that (before COVID) more than 40 million Americans suffered from life-altering anxiety, with many more suffering from occasional bouts of anxiety. Post-COVID (are we there yet?!), the numbers are surely higher. Allow me to briefly summarize a Biblical prescription for anxiety from the apostle Paul’s letter to the Philippians. I strongly encourage you to read and pray upon Philippians 4:4-9. In summary:
- Focus on the joy of your relationship with Christ (and not the transitory and often fleeting and depressing things of this world) and his declaration of his unconditional love for you, to never to leave or forget you. As a Christian, God in the form of the Holy Spirit dwells within you! He is your best, always dependable and eternal friend!
- Pray about your anxieties, turning your burdens over to Christ. Pray without ceasing.
- Fill your mind with edifying, spiritually positive thoughts. If we are what we eat, we mentally and spiritually are what we spend our limited hours dwelling upon. If we dwell excessively upon social media’s ups and downs and the daily news of our chaotic and depraved world, how can we expect our thoughts to be any different? As our pastor recently said, if we dine on cotton candy and energy drinks, can we expect a healthy physical body? Garbage in, garbage results in our minds and hearts.
Again, I strongly encourage you to carefully read, pray and reflect upon the words of God as transmitted through the apostle Paul in Philippians 4:4-9. As you practice (over and over again) these positive habits, “the God of peace shall be with you.” And if you recall your English grammar, “shall” in this case connotes certainty. God’s promise. You can take his promise to your spiritual bank!