We’re living through extremely difficult times. The headlines, of the day, spill over with continual bad news. This can leave us wondering – what’s next? Pandemic? Fires? Floods? Economic Crash? War?
That doesn’t even take into account the daily stress we experience in our personal lives. What a sobering reminder that we are not. in. control. In fact, SO much is OUT of our control!
For many, feeling in control provides a sense of peace. As long as our bank accounts stay out of the red and our family seems okay, we’re good, right?!
The truth is, nothing is ever really within our control. Hard times remind us of this.
Is it possible to obtain, and live, a life of peace during difficult times? I believe the answer is a resounding YES! One simple strategy that can help usher in peace is the practice of being more self-aware. Let’s talk about it….
Become more self-aware. I know it may sound counter intuitive to think of yourself more during a difficult time. The advice of many is to get your mind off of yourself by doing for others. I agree 100% that we should be doing more for others! But if you use busy-ness as a means of distracting yourself, that’s only a temporary”fix”.
Wouldn’t it profit everyone if we slowed down long enough to do the hard work of addressing what’s causing anxiety and then decide to lean into peace?
Once the work is done, you’ll be able to accomplish even more to help others – and do it in the spirit of peace rather than in the spirit of fear!
So how should we go about becoming more self-aware? I’m glad you asked! Here are a few ideas:
1) Name It: When anxiety begins to well up, sometimes we aren’t even sure what’s causing it…of course, other times we know exactly what it is. Either way, search your heart before anxiety completely takes a hold and ask yourself what exactly you are stressing over. Name the anxiety. Maybe its name is “financial struggles”, “uncertain future” or “health scare”.
The thought of naming the specific anxiety, felt in the moment, may scare some into thinking that will give the fear more “power”. However, I believe that this specific exercise gives the power back to you!
If you can name it, then you can stand over it.
2) Find Out How GOD Feels About What You’re Afraid Of: Once you realize what you are dealing with, open your Bible, a Bible concordance, or a Bible website online and find a verse that tells how GOD feels about this issue.
For example, if you are afraid of what the future holds then Jeremiah 29:11 is an excellent verse:
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
If a general feeling of anxiety is what you’re experiencing (and you’re not sure of specifics), then Isaiah 41:10 is a good one: “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”
3) Get the Truth Deep Down in Your Spirit: I’m sure you see where I’m going with this. Once you’ve found out, via Bible verse, how GOD feels about your specific anxiety inducing fear, get His truth about the issue into your heart and mind! Write the verse down in your journal. Write it on cards and place it around your house or office. Memorize it. That way, the next time anxiety begins to whisper fearful thoughts, into your ear, you can remind it that you are not afraid because you know how GOD feels about it!
4) Get Vocal!: If anxiety begins to well up, don’t hold back from speaking your verse OUT LOUD! It may even be appropriate to tell fear to leave in the Name of Jesus/Yeshua!
Spend time in praise and worship. This changes the atmosphere. It’s a powerful weapon against fear and anxiety.
Take back your peace in the mighty Name that is above ALL names!…and then ask GOD to send the Holy Spirit (and His holy angels) to come protect and comfort you.
I pray these words are not only a comfort to you but give you a game plan to put in place when you find yourself combating fear and anything that would seek to steal your peace!
May your home, and heart, be a place of peace…full of the Holy Spirit…full of GOD’s love…and free from fear! May the strength of GOD be upon you as you trust in Him more and more. You are so very loved now and always! We’re in this together.
Shalom to you,