Tag Archives: anxiety

Psalms 55:1-57:3

But I will call on God, and the Lord will rescue me. Morning, noon, and night I cry out in my distress, and the Lord hears my voice. He ransoms me and keeps me safe from the battle waged against me, though many still oppose me. God, who has ruled forever, will hear me and humble them.” Psalms 55:16-19 NLT

David was in trouble and knew he could call on the Lord. Do I believe that God is working on my behalf like David did? He had the faith to keep praying.

“Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.” Psalms 55:22 NLT

Why is it so hard to give my burdens to the Lord? Or as the ESV translation says, ”Cast your burden on the Lord.” Throwing something forceable in a specified direction, like a fishing line (Webster’s). Throwing my anxiety onto Jesus is an action. Sometimes it might take all that I have, just like the following verse says…“But when I am afraid, I will put my trust in you. I praise God for what he has promised. I trust God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me?” Psalms 56:3&4 NLT

You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.” Psalms 56:8 NLT

I am thankful for a Father who is so personal that he collects my tears. His heart breaks for mine, so he can heal it. Nothing is wasted with him.

My enemies will retreat when I call to you for help. This I know. God is on my side! I praise God for what he has promised; yes, I praise the Lord for what he has promised. I trust in God so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me?” Psalms 56:9-11 NLT

Dear Father, thank you that you hear me when I call to you. That you are always near. I love you for who you are. Amen.

Amy(amyctanner)

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Proverbs 1-4; Matthew 6

Matthew 6 is the middle chapter in Jesus’ great Sermon on the Mount. There is almost too much to take in when reading through these three chapters. D Martyn Lloyd Jones, the British theologian, wrote a book on these three chapters. The book is over an inch thick. Just think about what is found in that book that we can’t even take the time here to contemplate.

So what do we take away from this reading today? And that doesn’t even take into account Proverbs 1-4. In fact while reading these passages this week, they sound eerily similar. Two passages of God’s Word separated by many years, yet many good admonitions in living a godly life in the here and now.

What is your daily routine? What’s the first thing you do when you get up in the morning? Do you check email first? Do you read the news? Or do you spend time in God’s Word and prayer? I was watching a video blog by a person I follow in the business world and I believe he is far from a Christ-follower. He let’s nothing from the outside into his mind till he has done his yoga and meditation in the morning. Yet many of us who are Christ-followers are reading our emails, watching/reading the news and then by the time we get around to reading the Bible and prayer we are so distracted we cannot hear what God has for us. Here in Matthew 6 we are told not to worry about tomorrow or one could say anything before spending time with our Lord.

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? 28 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, 29 yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.34“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” (Matthew 6:25-34 [ESV])

I have found that if the first thing I do in the morning is to spend time with God, almost everything else takes care of itself. Worrying and being anxious before your time with God limits His access to your life and mind. It’s like a haze or fog you have already put in front of you. Then you strain to see what He is trying to teach you about Himself and His plans for your life.

Father God thank you for the life-giving power of your Word and presence. Give us the discipline and power to focus on You and You alone at the beginning of each day. We pray this in the wonderful and strong name of Jesus, Amen.

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2 Kings 7-8; 2 Chronicles 21; Matthew 6

Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble (Matthew 6:34 [ESV])

This chapter of the New Testament is filled with many things of which we as Christ-followers need to be reminded. This chapter alone would be good subject matter for a week of devotions. Matthew covers the following topics in this chapter:

  • Giving to the poor
  • Prayer
  • Fasting
  • Worry
  • Doing good to others
  • Anxiety
  • Treasures in Heaven

And then he adds the concluding verse. If we focus on those things listed above we will have plenty of things to do to occupy our minds and lives for today. We won’t have time to put more worries in our little worry boxes. We will be so focused on what we need to do today that tomorrow will take care of itself.

How do you spend your days? Do you worry about what’s coming later in the week or next month or year? Do your thoughts go to issues you have no control over or ability to change. In reading through this chapter there is enough to occupy our minds and actions with for today. Let’s begin focusing in the here and now. Tomorrow comes way too soon.

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Psalm 107, 108; Romans 15:21-33

I’m so serious, so intense, and even uptight at times.  I can get in my head and ruminate or obsess on every little mistake; or I can project into the future disaster after tragedy after bereft. I fear persecution, embarrassment, failure; even worse, I fear success! I wake up in the middle of the night with nerves snapping and neck knotted from wearing an unidentified burden of doom.

Living like this has caused me to react in paranoid protection mode, shooting at others or shooting myself in the foot. So it was with great relief when I learned something about the redeemed life of living in relationship with Jesus Christ.  There is powerful peace in His Word.

Just like today when I read out loud (oh, you have to try this, especially the psalms that were written to be sung by a choir!), Psalm 107.  I’m singing the blues there in the stanzas that repeat four times, “Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and He delivered them out of their distresses (Psalm 107: 6, 13, 19, 28). But it’s the refrain in this song (also sung four times) that must have been a crescendo of musical instruments, altos, sopranos, tenors, and bass singers ripping loose in colossal harmony, “Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!” Psalm 107: 8, 15, 21, 31.

This is like one of those songs in church that requires clapping to the Lord and some shouted Amens!  Out go my foolish worries, replaced by the joy of being in God’s care. Then I settle down and read the sermon in Romans. It falls tenderly on my heart when I realize that the Apostle Paul may have had a similar personality as me.  He uses words like “beg” and “strive” to ask his friends in Rome to pray with him (just a little intense, there, Paul?) His prayers are even about the same things that I am concerned.  For instance, I ask God to protect me from those who do not know Him.  Paul, too, prays that he may be delivered from unbelievers. I worry that my service to the church is inadequate; Paul asks that his service to the church would be acceptable. I hope that God will bring joy to my family and that I will gather with them. Paul prays that God would allow him to joyfully visit his Roman brethren. And I cannot tell you how much I desire to just have a time when I am not obligated to do one thing; and there is Paul, asking others to join him in prayer just to get a vacation and some needed R&R. (Very loosely paraphrased from Romans 15:30-32.)

Support straight from the heart of God.  I know this is where my peace will come from; for God is quoted in Psalm 108:7 as saying, “I will rejoice…”(indicating His pleasure) to deliver us, show His glory in His deliverance, andto  shower us with loving-kindness and mercy.

Just breathe in – -breathe out, Janet!

All Scriptures are from the Nelson Study Bible, New King James Version, Trinity Fellowship Church 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition.

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Numbers 7; Mark 4:21-41

And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?” Mark 4:37-40

More often than I’d like to admit, when in the midst of a crisis my faith wanes. Like the disciples, I become fearful, overwhelmed, and full of anxiety. I begin to feel hopeless. I know in the deep recesses of my brain that Jesus will never leave me nor forsake me, but I can’t always see the calm through the storm. I begin believing the lies of the enemy more than I trust Christ in me. It breaks in over me and negative circumstances fill up my boat like water. I feel like I might drown in the turmoil of the squall; I wonder how I will survive.

My current storm is one I think most mothers (and fathers) experience: the chaotic, all-consuming task of parenting small children while juggling life. I am stress out and exhausted, physically and emotionally.

On top of that, I am struggling with finding ways to keep my children occupied so that I can manage my house, and struggling to keep the to-do list small enough so I can focus on my kids. I am fraught with the frustrations of conquering one task only to find three more tasks have taken its place. I am still shocked at how quickly the girls can demolish a room – laundry I spent the morning folding but didn’t have a chance to get put away strewn across the bedroom , toys littering the play room floor, yet another wall covered in crayon mural (how did she get the crayons off the top shelf anyway!?)…Not to mention the fighting, the biting, the temper tantrums at full blast on and off all day long, the bed time resistance, the climbing all over mommy…Mommy…MOMMY!

This storm frequently feels like more than I can handle. It seems too big and some days, I am slow to remember that God is with me in the boat. I try to manage things by myself, but I am quickly overcome. I don’t feel peace. I don’t experience joy. I struggle to stay afloat. I am terrified. I am anxious. I am angry. I am impatient. I lose control and yell. “Mean mommy” rears her ugly head, producing fear and confusion, and in turn, my behavior becomes a storm for my children.

At times, when I finally do ask Jesus for help, I ask out of fear – “Don’t you care that I am overwhelmed by this storm? Don’t you care that I am afraid of drowning in it? Don’t you see I need help?”

Of course He cares. Of course He sees. He calms the storm and I am given a (temporary) breather.

However, I am learning that when I ask Him for help out of a place of faith, even when I am afraid, the storm is calmed and peace is restored in my home, and also in in my heart. He protects me. He gives me strength. He gives me wisdom. He shows me the best path to take. His love casts out my fear and I am able to lay my head in the cushion of His shoulder and rest, though other storms may come.

 Yesappa, I know you’re always there. Thank You for being with me in the midst of the storms I experience in life. Thank You for casting out fear and replacing anxiety with peace that surpasses understanding. Help me hold onto faith even when I am feeling overwhelmed. Help me trust You in all circumstances. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Blessings – Julie (writing from Sholavandan)

Unless otherwise indicated, all scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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