Monday, March 5, 2018

Keep Your Anxiety

Keep Your Anxiety
March 5, 2018
Philippians 4:6  "Do not be anxious about anything. . ."

Do not be anxious about anything but in everything present your requests to the Lord. Those are the instructions found in the Bible. Very specifically, it says we are not to be anxious. Seldom do any of us follow those orders. We like to keep our anxiety; it makes us feel alive. It makes us feel alive in pain, but alive nonetheless. If we aren't anxious anymore then what else is there for us to do when we are helpless? We cannot control the situation, we cannot fix it, hence the need to be anxious about it; it's the least we can do. But the Bible commands just the opposite. Furthermore, it says elsewhere that we are to cast our anxieties onto Him, throw them away like casting something into the ocean. It does not say we are to throw them away from ourselves but keep them on a string so we can reel them back in.  It says we are to throw them away from us; again, this is the opposite of keeping our anxieties.

According to science, the chemicals released in our bodies when we are anxious become toxic, causing harm internally, even altering our personalities over time. Anxiety can even cause a heart attack. No good thing has ever come from being anxious about something, not one thing. Nothing has ever been resolved through anxiety, and the problems have never been fixed by keeping anxiety close to the chest. The instructions in the Bible are to throw it away, but more importantly, let Jesus carry the weight of your anxiety.  Oftentimes, it is easier to deal with anxiety if there is someone else who will shoulder the responsibility. When was the last time a seven year old cared about where the money for the next mortgage payment would be coming from? Parents usually carry the weight of the responsibility and consequently the anxiety.

When we allow Jesus to take our anxiety, we are giving Him the shared responsibility for the situation. You cannot control it, you cannot fix it, and you may have zero ability to influence any potential outcome for the situation that you are anxious about. But Jesus, He has the ability to resolve it, to work it out how He sees fit. In fact, the Bible tells us that Jesus works EVERYTHING out as He sees fit, so He is already shouldering the weight of your situation. If He is already carrying the responsibility for it, then why carry the weight of the anxiety, too? Let Jesus take the anxiety, since He is ultimately responsible for the outcome. When things go well, do you not give glory to the Lord? Absolutely, we give glory to the Lord because EVERYTHING is under His care and His control and His dominion.  So, too, the problem you are anxious about today. It is all under His control and dominion and He is working everything out for your ultimate benefit, even if the short-term results do not look like it to our human eyes.

If you do not cast your anxieties onto Him, you are failing yourself. By keeping them all to yourself, you are telling Jesus that He is not really in control, not on His throne, and not truly Lord over your life. This may seem severe, but true nonetheless. The instructions are clear; cast your anxieties onto Him and then pray. Trust He will work it out as best for you in the long run, and pray and pray and pray. If you want something to do, when you can't do anything, being anxious isn't the key, praying is the only recommended course of action. Let the Lord be Lord of your life, and that includes taking your anxiety away. Or, if you want, keep your anxiety and reaffirm that you are Lord over your own life.

Don't take my word for it; look it up: Rom 8:28, Phil 4:6-7, 1 Peter 5:6-10

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