“An anxious mind is a divided mind” Hakeem Bradley
The date was April 14, 2014. I had just finished sharing an inspiring testimony about my father’s journey of faith. During that morning’s sermon, I noticed my husband suddenly began to nervously text back and forth, and I was frankly annoyed that he would do this during service, which in all honesty is a big no-no for us. As soon as the service was dismissed, my husband grabbed my hand and we quickly ran out of the sanctuary. Once outside, he began to frantically look for a room. I had no idea what was going on and kept asking him why the rush? We climbed the same set of stairs repeatedly, trying to find what he was looking for. Finally, we ended up back in the sanctuary, where most everyone was gone now. Finally, he sat me down at the center of the auditorium, held my hands together and looking right into my eyes, said the words I will never forget as long as I live; “Beba, I’m sorry. He’s gone. Your dad is gone. I’m very sorry.” At that moment it felt as if the world had stopped spinning, and there was only me and the anxious beating of my heart.
Recently, as I listen to Hakeem Bradley preached a sermon on anxiety, he quoted David Lomas; “Be aware of what anxiety feels like in your body. Anxiety can be a servant to you. When you feel anxiety, use it as an alarm bell to turn to God in prayer.” I thought about that powerful statement for a while. Yes, anxiety can be a servant to you and me! We need to work hard to make it submit to Christ’s ruling in our lives. When we release our anxiety to God, it does not mean that it will disappear, however, God has a way of making His peace overwhelm us, bringing a strange sense of clarity to whatever situation we find ourselves in. I still haven’t figure out how He does it, but wow! It amazes me every. single. time.
I wish I had an answer on how to get rid of anxiety, especially in these very difficult times we are living, but what I do have is an echo of Philippians 4:5, “…The Lord is at hand.” It is simple, yet better than a bag of magic tricks. Right there, in the moment of utter despair, when anxiety shows its ugly face, God is near. On Page 41 of my book, Chasing Life: Lessons on Suffering Well, I wrote; “When we suffer and hurt, we lose sight of where God has been before in our time of need.” The thing is that more often than not, we tend to forget -regardless of how great the miracle, how vast the provision, or how timely the rescue. Today, I want to encourage you, “cast ALL your cares on Him.” In your moment of anxiety, go back and remember where God has been in your most difficult times before, and encourage yourself, because if He did it then, He will do it now.
You are not alone in this!