Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus”—Philippians 4:6-7 (ESV).
Anxious (adjective) – full of mental distress or uneasiness because of fear of danger or misfortune; greatly worried; solicitous. Example used in a sentence: People are anxious (distressed, fearful, worried) about the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).
While we should be concerned about what is now being referred to as a pandemic (prevalent throughout an entire country, continent, or the whole world; epidemic over a large area), many are panicking. Stocking up on hand sanitizers and other cleaning products has left many store shelves empty. What I can’t understand is the need many feel to stock up on toilet paper.
I can understand anxiety about this deadly flu leading to purchasing large quantities of sanitizing products, and even food, but hoarding toilet paper leaves me baffled. How are the two connected? COVID-19 is a respiratory illness. Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath.
Symptoms of Anxiety and Fear
Evangelist Billy Graham made the following statement in 1965 but it’s still true today. “Historians will probably call our era ‘the age of anxiety.’ Anxiety is the natural result when our hopes are centered in anything short of God and His will for us.”
Graham adds, “At its best, anxiety distracts us from our relationship with God and the truth that He is ‘Lord of heaven and earth’ (Matthew 11:25). At its worst, anxiety is a crippling disease, taking over our minds and plunging our thoughts into darkness.”
God gives us wisdom and common sense. Allowing anxiety and fear to control our thoughts and actions can lead to irrational behavior and poor choices. God wants so much more for us. He doesn’t want us to walk through life filled with fear, worry and anxiety.
Do Not Be Anxious About Anything
In the Bible the book of Philippians, chapter 4, tells us, “Do not be anxious about anything but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
But Paul’s remedy for anxiety doesn’t stop there. He adds, in verses 8-9, the following: “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. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:8-9, ESV).
What steps do we need to take toward an anxiety-free mind? If you haven’t already, give your life to Jesus Christ. Fix your thoughts on Him and His promises.
Finding Comfort in His Promises
None can predict the future. We can’t depend on the government or political figures. Our trust needs to be in Jesus Christ. We can find freedom from anxiety and fear by staying focused on Him.
Below are some comforting scriptures to bring calm in times of trouble and chaos. Write them down and post them where you can see them throughout your day. Try memorizing them.
Impress them “on your heart and on your soul” (Deuteronomy 11:18 NASB).
Impress This Scripture on your Heart
- “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”
- “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.”
- “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”
- “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”
- “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”
- “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”
- “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
- “Sing for joy, O heavens, and exult, O earth; break forth, O mountains, into singing! For the Lord has comforted his people and will have compassion on his afflicted.”
- “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
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