Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
So much is going on in the world our nation, our local communities and our personal lives that cause us to be anxious. I believe there is evidence to declare that we live in an age of anxiety. Everywhere we turn, people are worried about something. Whether it’s personal concerns, family matters, financial needs, health issues, governmental policies, or global conditions,we all have reasons to worry. It's not unusual to feel anxious, when you perceive there is a real threat to your or a loved one's safety, security and welfare.
We may feel nervous when faced with a problem at work, before taking a test, or before making an important decision. There are people who suffer with what is called socia lanxiety disorder. This is when people feel overwhelming worry and self-consciousness about everyday social situations. They fixate about others judging them or on being embarrassed or ridiculed. We take to bed with us, wake up with them, and carry them around with us all day. The truth is that Christians are not exempt or immune to anxiety.
A brief summation of the causes of anxiety are as follows:
Our attempt to change things we cannot control.
Our failure to trust God to provide our needs.
Trying to live tomorrow today.
The following questions may be used to test whether you anxiety and fear:
Do you worry and are fearful much of the time?
Do you feel anxious, wound up, tense and restless, easily fatigued and worn out, or have concentration and attention problems, or difficulty staying or falling sleep? Do you anticipate impending doom, even when there is little basis to your fears?
Do you struggle to regain control, or relax, or cope with your symptoms, but to no avail? Are your symptoms unrelated to another mental disorder?
Do your symptoms cause you significant distress or problems functioning in you relationships, job, and other areas of your life, and these symptoms are not due to a substance or medical issue?
Dr. Charles Stanley makes the following two points:
To overcome worry, we ought to adopt an attitude of joy and thankfulness.
There are so many things for which we can thank God. When we focus on these things, God’ s peace guards our hearts and minds no matter how difficult our circumstances may be.
The call of God never takes us where the grace of God cannot sustain us.
He has promised to meet all our needs and to guard us with His peace and joy. God wants to settle our hearts in such a way that we can live with the stresses of life yet still experience His peace and joy.
I offer to you the living words of Jesus: Peace I leave with you; My peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives, Do not let your hearts be troubled and Do Not Be Afraid.
Rev Dr Peter E. Grinion