Anxiety. It creeps in – usually silently in the night for me. I’ll lie down in bed to sleep and then all of a sudden I find my mind racing in a million different directions spiraling in to worry over things that I can’t control. It’s destructive. It cripples our ambitions. It saps our strength. It steals our passions and purpose. It’s like clipping a bird’s wings.

But you know what I’ve learned to do? I’ve learned to recognize it for what it is. It’s the enemy at work. As 2 Timothy says… God does NOT give us the spirit of fear. So… what have I been DOING about it?

the spirit of fear overcoming anxiety

  1. Recognize those thoughts are NOT from God.

Fear, anxiety, worry… NONE of these are from God. These are all some of the most powerful weapons of the enemy. The enemy gives us those thoughts to distract us from God and his work. To turn us away from our goals and what God intends.

2. Don’t think about it.

We have a CHOICE on what we think about. Trust me, I know that’s easier said than done. Perhaps, you are worrying about something with one of your children. Perhaps, you are facing fear over an ongoing health issue. I’m not just preaching to you my friends. I can truly write behind this screen and tell you, “I GET IT.” Following my stroke I was debilitated by fear. It had taken over my mind. And so that’s why I just stopped writing about it.

When the anxiety begins to overtake you – stop thinking about it. This doesn’t mean don’t address issues that need to be addressed but you don’t need to sit in anxiousness for hour upon hour. Do something to get your mind off of it. Read a book. Watch a movie. Go outdoors. Sometimes if I can’t sleep then I know I need a reset. I’ll go work a bit more or perhaps take a bath and read a book.

It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed. – Deuteronomy 31:8

3. Give it to God.

When I’m starting to worry about something I literally just tell the Lord what it is and say, “I’m giving this to you.” We do not have to live with an anxious heart. We are not in control but God certainly is. Allow that to sooth your soul and calm your spirits.

“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.” Psalm 56:3

4. Guard your heart.

Choose to guard your heart from those fears and focus on the truth. My aunt gave me some great scripture that we can repeat daily or when we feel those anxious thoughts coming.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7

“But now, this is what the Lord says…Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.” Isaiah 43:1

the spirit of fear overcoming anxiety

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I wrote a post following my stroke called, “Breath in Peace and Exhale Worry.” I still say that to myself when I feel the anxiety coming. I will literally picture myself in my mind’s eye breathing in God’s peace and exhaling all the negative. Try it next time. 😉

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2 Responses

  1. Matt

    Great article!
    Just wanted to five my top 3 stress-busting tips!
    1 – Meditate – as much or as little as you have time for. It has helped me through some tough times.
    2 – Yoga & Cardio Exercise – I can’t think straight without raising my heart rate for at least 30 mins per day.
    3 – Avoid Social Media – You know it’s true…haha! Living your life waiting for “likes” is the best way to increase stress IMO!!!
    Hope this helps some of your readers.
    Keep up the great work!
    Matt recently posted…A cure for stress? – Are there really any benefits of weighted blankets???My Profile

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