The Antidote for Anxiety and Worry

Well this is good news! How many of struggle with anxiety/worry at times? Or maybe even all the time? I know I have struggled with anxiety/worry at times when things feel they are out of control or I receive some very bad news. I am not always good at allowing prayer to be my first reaction to the worry or anxiety that I am feeling. My prayer and desire for others and myself is that prayer would become our first response to our worry or anxiety.

Anxiety is defined as intense, excessive, and persistent worry and fear about everyday situations. Some of us live in a state of anxiety everyday about situations that we really have no control over.

Recently, I have had a couple of situations where I have struggled with some anxiety/worry. Joel, my oldest son left on a mission trip to Mozambique. It is not a place of safe travels by any means. Immediately, I was faced with the fear of all the “what if’s.” All these scenarios from the moment I received the news he was going, to him actually getting on the plane to Mozambique, and up until one week into his 2 week trip I have struggled with worry and anxiety about his safety. Just yesterday I received some bad news from a very dear friend who was just diagnosed with cancer. I quickly went from utter shock to a state of worry, fear, anxiety. I had trouble staying in faith that afternoon after she had told me. My mind was going to and fro and never landing in a place of peace.

Both situations are so out of my control. I am in need of an antidote for my anxiety/worry. The definition of antidote is a medicine taken or given to counteract a particular poison. Wow! A particular poison. That is exactly what anxiety/worry is, a poison. I need a medicine to counteract that poison. That medicine is prayer. Just like certain medications that need to be taken several times a day to get better, we need to pray several times a day to receive peace, to receive hope. The Lord had given me a scripture several years ago that has helped me when those times of anxiety/worry want to consume every thought. It is my antidote when I have been poisoned with anxiety/worry. When I struggle with words to pray I just pray this scripture slowly and meditate on each word.

Philippians 4:6-8 “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication (to plead humbly your request before God-with expectation that He will answer them) with thanksgiving, let your requests be made know to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, bretheren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute. If there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.”

As we fight the battle of anxiety/worry I encourage you to reach for the antidote that will bring peace and hope into your situation. Even if you are reaching for it a hundred times a day, keep taking your medication of prayer. We can’t control people, situations and some days we can barely control ourselves. Find a place of peace and hope in prayer.

Karen Haler
Children’s Ministry Director
NCWC

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