WRITTEN BY MICHAELA
This week I’ve been struggling with anxiety. It’s ranged from mild worry to occasional panic attacks. Now first, let me tell you that I’m not usually an anxious person; I tend to let things go and roll with the punches. But for some reason this week was rock bottom. On Thursday I had my first panic attack. I was laying in my bed trying to go to sleep when I started thinking about things in my life that were stressing me out. I know, not a great idea, but I couldn’t stop. Suddenly I felt sick. My chest tightened up, I got all warm and I couldn’t breathe. Gasping for air I leapt out of bed, scared for my life. I realized then that my worry had gone too far. I was trapped in my fear, and doom surrounded me. I had no hope. Immediately I began to pray.
“God, please take these feelings away. There are things in my life right now that I cannot control. I know that. I also know that YOU ARE IN CONTROL. Lord, take my stress, take it and use it. Use it to remind me that I can TRUST YOU. Help me to rely on You and remember that You are my Rock and will forever be certain.”
Praying that night helped. Listening to music helped, too. My go to song when I was feeling overwhelmed was Hills and Valleys by Tauren Wells. Dwelling on God’s control made my mind and body relax. I began to be okay with not knowing. I began to be okay with not being in control. I began to TRUST.
A few days later, at church of all places, I had another attack. This one came out of nowhere and I had to leave the sanctuary. As I was in the ladies’ room trying to calm down I had the idea to look up prayers about anxiety on Pinterest. 2 Timothy 1:7 popped up. WOW. Game changer.
For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of POWER and LOVE and SELF-CONTROL.
My fears were not only useless, but they were lies. Lies that Satan was using to distract me from focusing on God. 1 John 4:18 says that perfect loves drives out fear. When I am trusting in myself I can’t help but have panic attacks. My heart is full of fear and trusting that will lead me to destruction. BUT GOD IS LOVE. Trusting in Him and His perfect love will overcome my fears. In Christ I have VICTORY. Matthew 19:26 says that putting my trust in God will allow me to walk through life with confidence.
I wanted to talk about this because anxiety is real. For anyone else who is struggling with worry, I want to encourage you to focus on God, not your fears. If you do that, everything really will be okay.
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. -Philippians 4:8