Anxiety and God

Are you facing an impossible situation? Perhaps you lost your home, you wrecked your car, you were fired from your job, or your spouse left. Suddenly, it seems that your entire world is collapsing, and you have no idea how to face tomorrow.

Anxiety is an emotion that arises when we fear the unknown. It comes upon us suddenly when we hear devastating news. Biologically, anxiety serves a problem-solving function. The stress of a difficult situation causes anxiety, and in turn, we try to solve the problem to reduce our anxiety.

For example, you might experience a low level of anxiety when you can’t find a missing sock. Oh no! you think to yourself. If I can’t find this missing sock soon, I am going to be late for work! The stress in your body begins to rise, and your heart begins to beat faster. You begin looking everywhere: in the dryer, in the bathroom, under the bed.

As you search for that missing sock, you begin to have other thoughts. I could pick out a different color of socks, but they won’t match the rest of my outfit. Can I handle the embarrassment? Do I have time to stop by the store and buy some new socks on the way to work? But if I do that, I might have to put on my shoes without any socks. Maybe I can wear sandals.

Most of us feel that we can handle the problem of a missing sock. However, there are times in life when we face problems that we have no idea how to solve. For example: How can I help my child who is addicted to drugs?How can I make my spouse fall in love with me again? How can I provide for my family when I have been diagnosed with a terminal illness?

Some problems, like missing socks, are very small. Other problems, like death, are much greater. The problem with anxiety is that God has allowed us to experience this emotion to help us face small problems, but we don’t know how to rid ourselves of this feeling when we face impossible problems.

Because we are made in the image of God, we have been blessed with the ability to solve problems. However, God has not put all things under our control. We may do our best to prepare for the worst, but there are some problems that we will never be able to solve.

This is where God steps in.

When crippling anxiety arises, it is because you are facing a problem you cannot solve. In times like these, we have no other option but to turn to the only person in the universe who is capable of solving every problem we will ever face. His name is Jesus Christ. God has given him authority over every problem in the universe, including all of my problems and all of your problems.

If you are facing a problem that you cannot solve, I invite you to take these steps:

First, name your problem. Try to reduce your problem to a single word or phrase such as job, child, money, housing, divorce, disease, death, loneliness, or addiction.

Second, imagine placing that problem in one of your hands, and take a moment to look at that problem as it rests in the opened palm of your hand.

Next, as you hold that problem in your hand, look up to God, and say this prayer:

God, I know you are good. I can’t solve this problem, but you can.

Finally, lift your hand that is holding that problem, and give the problem to God.

[Are you facing a problem you cannot solve? God wants you to find support in a loving community. You don’t have to face uncertainty alone. Click here to set up an appointment with a Christian counselor].

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