Dealing With Anxiety From A Christian Perspective

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How Can Dealing With Anxiety From A Christian Perspective Help You?

Understanding anxiety is the start in dealing with anxiety from a Christian perspective.  Charles Stanley has a great message on this that I think might be helpful. God’s word tells us frequently, not to be afraid.  God knows we would have anxiety or at the least, anxious moments in our lives.

 

2 Timothy 1:7

7 For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.

 

Read on with Charles …

Throughout scripture, the Lord gives us evidence that many people deal with anxiety—even those considered pillars of faith. For example, we can deduce that the apostle Paul must have felt fear, since God instructed Him not to be afraid “any longer” (Acts 18:9).

 

The fact that fear is common, however, does not mean it is from the Lord (2 Timothy 1:7). Of course, certain situations—like hearing a loud noise when we are alone—will trigger a frightened response. But God doesn’t want us to live with ongoing anxiety.

 

Common worries include the fear of death, poverty, illness, old age, criticism, and the loss of a loved one or something cherished. Why do we find it so hard to let go of our concerns, even when God clearly states, “Do not fear” (Luke 12:7)? The reason is that worry can become deeply ingrained in the way we think. Sometimes we have unhealthy thought patterns that stem from feelings of inadequacy, a sense of guilt, or a mistaken view of the Lord. It’s not uncommon for insecurity in childhood to develop into a lack of confidence later on. Life experiences can be another factor. For instance, a person who has lost a parent suddenly in a car accident is likely to struggle with worry.

 

Regardless of the cause, anxiety will take our eyes off our omnipotent, loving heavenly Father and focus our attention on our circumstances. No wonder God repeatedly reminds us not to fear—He wants His children to feel secure in His capability and trustworthiness.

When anxiety strikes

Philippians 4:6-7

6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 

If you needed a consultant, would you hire just anyone? Of course not. You’d want to be sure your advisor had experience to back up his or her suggestions. The apostle Paul was certainly qualified to teach on the value of contentment—he wrote on the subject while under confinement by Roman authorities.

 

In today’s passage, Paul says that prayer safeguards the believer’s heart from anxiety. Praying appropriately will result in protection, so we are wise to follow the pattern Jesus gave us. The Lord’s Prayer underscores adoration of the Father and de-emphasizes focusing on oneself (Matt. 6:9-13). God does desire to hear our concerns (Phil. 4:6). But if problems are all that keep us on our knees, then we have missed the main point of our relationship with Him.

 

Why does the Lord expect us to honor Him when what we really want is immediate help for our problems? Because where the mind dwells, the heart follows. Focusing on His greatness puts our needs in perspective and encourages us to rest easy. He is in charge and at work (Rom. 8:28).

 

Consider Jesus’ prayer in Gethsemane (Matt. 26:36-46). Even as the Lord was crying out for relief, He nevertheless submitted to the Father’s greater will (Matt. 26:39). As a result, a supernatural peace fortified the Savior and enabled Him to face His executioners.

 

In today’s reading, Paul offered a radical peace plan: Praise the Lord while suffering persecution; thank Him when facing trials; pray about everything. Each prayer braces your heart against anxiety. That’s solid advice from a man who practiced what he preached.

 

Dealing with Anxiety Summary

We live in an age of anxiety. Whether it’s personal concerns, family matters, financial needs, health issues, governmental policies, or global conditions, we all have reasons to worry and fret. We take our worries to bed with us, wake up with them, and carry them around with us all day. This is not how God wants us to live.

 

Sermon Points

Anxiety is not just a contemporary problem. It was also an issue for those who lived in Old Testament times. By the time the Roman Empire ruled the world, there were plenty of reasons for anxiety. Jesus’ solutions sound so simple, yet we still struggle to apply them.

 

The Causes of Anxiety

  • Feelings of inadequacy.
  • Our attempt to change things we cannot control.
  • Our failure to trust God to provide our needs.
  • Misplaced priorities.
  • Trying to live tomorrow today.

To overcome worry, we ought to adopt an attitude of joy and thankfulness.
There are so many things for which we can thank God. When we focus on these things, God’s peace guards our hearts and minds no matter how difficult our circumstances may be.

 

The call of God never takes us where the grace of God cannot sustain us.
He has promised to meet all our needs and to guard us with His peace and joy. The choice is ours.

 

Summary

Anxiety is a problem that has troubled us through the ages. Fear in the face of critical situations is natural. However, much of our anxiety is associated with everyday problems. God wants to settle our hearts in such a way that we can live with the stresses of life yet still experience His peace and joy.


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