I was briefly reading Psalm 55 before a meeting this morning, and as I came across verses four and five I realized it described how anxiety feels. I am grateful that David was able to share his heart with God and thousands of years later, many us, if not all, can relate.
Anxiety can be felt in your chest as it pounds to the beat of stress and sorrow. Anxiety can be a lump in the throat making it hard to swallow the fear that does not want to submit and go away. Anxiety can be sweat and chills with tension and rapid eye blinks. Anxiety can be in the trembles of the body and the mind wandering a mile a minute with a plague of worries and thoughts. Anxiety can be in the avoidance of necessary activities in life to social and step out on faith moments as well as a desire to run and hide, costing you freedom and joy. Anxiety can be the mind stuck in the past or stuck in the future. Anxiety can feel like death is following and no one can help or understand. Anxiety can feel like a death sentence as well as a life sentence. But God…
There is hope. And we are anxiety fighters. Thanks to God we can take one day at a time and fight through. We can develop courage and joy because the joy of the Lord will be our strength. We can learn about ourselves, how to endure, and learn to see ourselves the way God does. We can heal and grow, and many of us will receive the deliverance from the spirit of fear because God did not give us a spirit of fear, but that of power, love and a sound mind.
But I will call on God, and the Lord will rescue me. Morning, noon, and night I cry out in my distress, and the Lord hears my voice. He ransoms me and keeps me safe from the battle waged against me, though many still oppose me. Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall. Psalms 55:16-18, 22 NLT https://bible.com/bible/116/psa.55.16-22.NLT
God is our safe place. God can and will sustain us. God cares about us and is concerned about everything that concerns us. God hears our cries and collects our tears. He is the answer to our problems. He loves us greater than anyone ever can. Jesus is a testament to His love for us. God reminds us to not fear. He is with us and He will never leave us nor forsake us. He is a present help in the time of trouble.
Let us ask God where we have not been trusting Him. Let us take a deep breath and rest in the God who loves us beyond measure and wants us to receive the life and life to the full He came to give us. Share with Him, like David, the contents of our hearts. And let us remember how good God has been and worship Him through the good times and bad, the certainties and doubts, and anxiety.
Around the time I was promoting my first self-published book, Setting The Captive Free poetry book, I did a promo photo shoot with some friends. I had us list what God had delivered us from. And I, myself, several things including anxiety, depression, generational curses, etc.
Looking back, maybe at that time that was completely true as life during that time was most likely okay and breathable. And I could honestly say God did deliver me from depression and even a suicide attempt years prior. I also know there were generational curses that were broken. But I wondered to myself as I saw a reminder of the I Am Free promo, photo shoot and post if I truly was free or capping as they say. Or maybe I felt free at the moment.
In any event, I notice that a lot of believers know that Jesus can and does set us free. Although we may still sin, sin no longer can reign in our lives. And although the world may never have the solutions to our problems, we have access to the throne of grace of the One who is the solution. But some of us are still walking around bound. The joy of the Lord is our strength but we rarely experience or spread joy. We are worried and stressed while God is ready to be given our cares and burdens because He cares for us.
Anxiety has plagued me for years. I would not realize until years later that even in college and teen years anxiety was present. It was present when I would get sick to the point of having to go back home after almost making it to the bus stop. And when I say I got sick, it was sick to my stomach… nevermind. Lol, I will stop there. It was present when I was lightheaded and hitting the floor. It was present at every moment of overthinking and worry. It was present with negative thoughts and self-pity. It was there when I felt like I disappointed someone. And anxiety is still present.
However, now that I know it is anxiety and what fuels it and what triggers it, I can have those informed conversations with myself and a professional. But more importantly, now that I realize I don’t want to just feel and look free, I can go back to God and ask Him to help me to realize that I can be truly free.
Sometimes miracles and healing can happen overnight. Sometimes it takes time. I didn’t get this way overnight and there are a lot of components to address when someone struggles with anxiety or depression. So, I know this is going to take some time. But at the end of the tunnel, I pray that I am truly free. And that I heal from every stronghold and trauma and circumstance that is holding up the anxiety fear. I have to understand that deliverance sometimes is continual and I have to learn to trust God through. As well as surrender every area and layer of my life to God.
I just have to understand that deliverance is sometimes continual and I have to learn to trust God through it all. As well as surrender every area and layer of my life to God.
So if the Son sets you free,(B) you will be free indeed( John 8:36). Our Savior granted us freedom, grace, mercy, and an unfailing love. It is time we walk fully in such.
After coming across and watching several videos lately on pretty privilege, colorism, anxiety, and a variety of life topics, I realize how brave many people are to address or express their experiences or views on such. And then I think about my own experiences in life and realize that we all have some things on our mental tape (minds and hearts) to deal with. What views and perspectives did you come to take on about yourself? How did your experiences shape how you see yourself? What patterns, traumas and events in your life fuel the way you approach life, family, work?
I thought about how certain things have been on my mental tape. Some have stopped playing. Some are rewinded back. Some are being scratched out and recorded over. But there are many things on it. And I suppose there are many things on yours. I was once asked when I was young if I was adopted or found somewhere (I am not adopted; I am my mother’s daughter). At the time, out of my mom and sister, I was the only one who was of a medium brown complexion. I don’t remember all of what I felt. But I do remember that it stuck with me and when I went home, I told my mom. And I remember a family member having my other family members laughing at me saying basically I smelled (I don’t think I did; I hope I didn’t lol, but I was a kid). I cried that night. And I forgot that when I told an adult the next day what happened that night, there was complete silence. Another time, in high school, I remember boarding a school bus to head to our homecoming game and one of my classmates came to sit by me.
Another classmate who came to sit across from him asked him why was he sitting next to me. I remained quiet but that too stuck with me. I was determined to have a good time at the game and show school spirit that I decided not to dwell on it. Fast forward to an adult, there was a smear campaign against me at work I had to endure that I thought I would never get through. I cried on a regular and was so hurt. There is heartbreak I had to endure from my first serious relationship. I remember he broke up with me over the phone. I remembered feeling like can he hurry it up. Just get it over with. I was angry and hurt. As soon as we ended the call, I remember looking out the window of the rear end of the bus. I was so glad I had chose the seat at the very back because I silently cried my heart out. Tears streamed down my face.
There are countless childhood and adulthood memories that as I typed were popping up in my mind. However, I am grateful for the healing journey that I am on and most likely will continue throughout my life. And that is okay. Growth and healing is and should be constant. I am also grateful that I don’t dwell on these things nor bear unforgiveness towards those who have played a part in these events that have left hurt or trauma in my heart.
Thanks to the Holy Spirit, the grace to do the healing homework and commitment to stay on the journey, I have learned some of the triggers to my anxiety. I have learned more about my flaws and why I may respond the way I do. I have learned some of my self-perceptions. I have felt not worthy and sometimes not pretty enough. I have felt like I have to give more, do more and be more to be enough (not all the time but I have noticed that this is how I generally feel). But God. Renewing my mind is crucial. Saturating in the Word of God is imperative. Learning to see myself in the eyes of God and love myself with His love can help me not only process what is on my mental tape but also add new things to it that will remind me I am enough. I am loved.
Moreover, this is not a woe is me message. I do have self esteem and confidence (this is growing). I do have happy moments and memories in my childhood and adulthood. I do have those who have affirmed me and supported me. But like any human, I have had and have still trauma and pain, disappointments and heartbreaks that I too have to heal and grow from. And in order to heal, you have to be able to allow some things to come to the surface. You can’t keep pain, old patterns, and feelings bottled up and hidden. Allow God to bring them to the surface. Safely explore these to see what is holding up the strongholds and generational curses in your life as well as feelings of not feeling like you are enough, anger, bitterness, and unforgiveness in your heart and mind.
Have these conversations with God first, yourself, with a therapist and someone you can trust. Let the healing journey begin.
Bring It To The Surface Poetry & Journal available now at Amazon.
Just recently, I had the privilege of getting an awesome word from my cousin-in-law. We talked about anxiety and fear, and we also talked about being afraid to fight and not being use to fighting. She encouraged me so. My heart was full.
I went on to talk about these topics with my sister and we concluded that sometimes it may not always be we are used to not fighting but that we are afraid of conflict. And sometimes we are afraid we won’t be able to respond the way we need to or even hold up during the fight or conflict.
And just this morning, as I prepared to walk the dog, I walked past the tv that had been left on and saw a clip of Divergent. One of my favorite movies. The clip was Four getting ready to take Tris in to the landscape of his mind to show her how to prepare for the final test. She can’t just do things how she would normally do them. She can’t just rush through or even avoid some things. She must show that she is indeed Dauntless and not that she is (spoiler alert) divergent. And so this clip made the lightbulb go on in my head. I immediately thought about fighting. Not the throwing up fists and releasing punches but getting back up and persevering. Fighting with wisdom and faith and resilience. Fighting strategically.
Just maybe during this season, God is teaching me how to fight. We can’t always avoid a fight. We can’t always run. And we can’t, like Tris, rush through it and respond the way we normally would. Each fight may require a different strategy. And my cousin-in-law said something similar. Oh my, I am getting full again. This fight may be different than the previous fight. You may need to do more than praying, sis. You may have to fast. You may have to cut some things off and out.
It is found via Google search that “fear not/do not be afraid” is written in the Bible 365 times. God has to remind us daily to not be afraid. God wants us to remember who We belong to and that the war has already been won. He wants us to also know that we have a strong defense team (He, His Son and Spirit as well as His angels) and the best tactical gear (the armor of God and prayer as well as worship) in the world and heavens.
So, why is God teaching us how to fight or to fight in this season?
1. God wants us to face our fears. Just like Four and Tris had to face their fears in the landscapes of their minds, God wants us to face ours. He also wants us take every thought captive. Destroy every proud obstacle that keeps us from knowing Him. There is a war going on in our minds and the best way to bring peace to our minds is to train our minds to catch, check and change certain thoughts that do not line up with the word and will of God. Or the love of God. We should even check thoughts that may not seem detrimental or harmful and see if they are sowing seeds of confusion, distraction and complacency with the world, fear, etc. Fears as they say are false evidence appearing real but to our minds it feels so real. And our fears can stem from so much trauma in our lives that it is normal to feel the way we feel. But God doesn’t want our identities and lives to be rooted in fear. He wants us to overcome and live fruitfully. We can’t fully live if our lives are fully rooted in fear.
2. God wants us to learn how to fight. God has strategies to overcome and to persevere. He has plans that always succeed. And He has promises that awaits us. His wisdom is supreme and it can aid us and save us from making poor decisions sometimes made due to fear and emotions. And like I mentioned before, the next fight may be a different kind of fight and may need a different kind of strategy. God may want us to be still during this fight to learn that He will defend us and to build our confidence in Him. Or He may want us to increase in prayer and fasting. We may need to be much bolder and let some things fall off of us. We may be carrying so much pain and so many distractions that prevent us from fighting effectively and consistently. So, He may call us away to Himself to heal and reorganize our priorities. We need to seek Him diligently and saturate in His Word. Find scriptures concerning our issues, problems, battles and meditate on and pray these scriptures. Just because we are afraid of the backlash from the enemy, afraid that our loved ones will be uncomfortable or afraid that no one in our circle will fight with us doesn’t mean the battle will go away. And God is Almighty and with us. The devil’s fate is sealed. And he already lost the war. God got you. We must learn to fight and learn to trust God.
3. God wants us to know that we are not alone and that we are joining the fight with other believers and for others, saved and unsaved, who need us to step up to the battle line. Tris had Four to help her. Tris had to realize that Four and many others like her needed someone to stand in the gap and make a difference. There are generational curses that need to broken in our families. There are children who need our intercession. There are churches that need revival and marriages that need reviving. There are sick people that need healing. There are people that need deliverance. There are some people that just need to experience God’s love and joy, especially during the uncertain moments of their lives.
So, be encouraged. Today, you may not feel like fighting. That is okay. Say thank You, Lord, for a new day. Start there. And then continue to listen for His voice on how to proceed throughout the day.
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled. II Corinthians 10:3-6 NKJV https://bible.com/bible/114/2co.10.3-6.NKJV
These are the nations the Lord left to test all those Israelites who had not experienced any of the wars in Canaan (he did this only to teach warfare to the descendants of the Israelites who had not had previous battle experience): They were left to test the Israelites to see whether they would obey the Lord’s commands, which he had given their ancestors through Moses. Judges 3:1-2, 4 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/jdg.3.1-4.NIV
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. James 1:2-5 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/jas.1.2-5.NIV
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. Ephesians 6:10-18 NIV https://bible.com/bible/111/eph.6.10-18.NIV
While reading this morning Exodus chapter three again, a question and a statement came to mind and not in this order. The question was “What came before the Exodus?” And the statement was “you need an encounter with God before your exodus out of whatever it is God wants to deliver you from.” So, what is an exodus? An exodus basically means mass departure or going out. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the word itself is derived from the Greek word Exodos which literally means “the road out”. We know that in Exodus three that God commissions Moses to lead His people out of years of oppression and suffering. God saw and heard His people and He said to Moses, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering (Exodus 3:7 NLT). He then goes on to say that I have come down to rescue them. This is where Moses fits in and gets welcomed to join God in His mighty work.
Does God See Our Tears?
Exodus had to remind me that God hears and He sees. Often, many of us saved or unsaved cry out that God does not see all of the suffering in the world or even in our individual lives. He does. He is aware. That is why He sent His Son to bring His Kingdom here on earth and bring salvation and reconciliation. We now have an opportunity to one day no longer suffer and be in agony and turmoil.
Moreover, as I read Exodus three, it dawned on me that some things preceded the exodus of the Israelites. For one, Moses had an encounter with God. And some other things took place also but first let me encourage you that God sees your suffering and He hears your cries.
Circumstances Don’t Have The Last Say
Circumstances in life, especially ones that won’t let up, won’t let you sleep, and keep popping back up, will make you feel like running and throwing in the towel. I have had days where my conversations with God are full of tears, pleas and cries of wanting to just give up. However, a Bible plan I read left me with the impression that God will either deliver you from it or see you through it. The line in the Bible plan actually read “that sometimes God doesn’t deliver you from the trial. Instead He saves us through it.”
In my struggles with anxiety and fear as well as other circumstances presented in my life, I sometimes think that this would be a lifelong struggle that eventually I would lose. But the devil is a liar. And John 16:33 reminds me that Jesus has already overcome the world, and therefore, He has already overcome the issues that plague it too. We may lose some battles in our human experience but Jesus overcame the war. I may deal with anxiety for the rest of my life, but I know one thing God is teaching me through all of this, and that is to trust Him one day at a time.
Shoot, the second thing He is teaching me is that He sent me a helper, the third person and He is called the Holy Spirit. He is my Comforter and constant, unparalleled peace in the midst of any storm. Three, I must surrender all to God. I must surrender to His love and lordship. And four, God does want to deliver me. There will be times I will be afraid and anxiety will rear its ugly head to challenge me to run and hide, stand still and give up, or tremble and fight. But the Holy Spirit will help me to get to the point where fear will not control me. And I will take my focus off of fear and anxiety and put it back on Jesus. I will live in the presence of God. The spirit of fear will not choke out my destiny or become my identity. The spirit of fear will not dictate the quality of life I will have or shall I say lack thereof. God did not give me a spirit of fear, but that of power, love and a sound mind. I will receive the life and life to the full Jesus came to give me. I will see myself the way God does. I will experience the joy that comes from God here on earth instead of believing I have to wait to experience it in heaven. The joy of the Lord is my strength. I will be fulfilled by only the One who can fulfill me and that is God.
Life is not and will not always be comfortable. In fact, storms come and go. But I can walk in the freedom and wholeness of God, knowing that in His presence and with His grace, I can live simply, fruitfully and purposefully.
What Comes Before An Exodus?
Now back to what comes before the exodus.
God heard and saw. He sees your suffering. He feels your pain. He acknowledges what you’re feeling. Then the Lord told him, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering. Exodus 3:7 NLT
God remembers His covenant and promises. “Now go and call together all the elders of Israel. Tell them, ‘Yahweh, the God of your ancestors—the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob—has appeared to me. He told me, “I have been watching closely, and I see how the Egyptians are treating you. I have promised to rescue you from your oppression in Egypt. I will lead you to a land flowing with milk and honey—the land where the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites now live.”’ Exodus 3:16-17 NLT
You have an encounter with God. One day Moses was tending the flock of his father-in-law, Jethro, the priest of Midian. He led the flock far into the wilderness and came to Sinai, the mountain of God. There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire from the middle of a bush. Moses stared in amazement. Though the bush was engulfed in flames, it didn’t burn up. “This is amazing,” Moses said to himself. “Why isn’t that bush burning up? I must go see it.” When the Lord saw Moses coming to take a closer look, God called to him from the middle of the bush, “Moses! Moses!” “Here I am!” Moses replied. “Do not come any closer,” the Lord warned. “Take off your sandals, for you are standing on holy ground. I am the God of your father —the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” When Moses heard this, he covered his face because he was afraid to look at God. Exodus 3:1-6 NLT
God invites you to join Him in His mission. Look! The cry of the people of Israel has reached me, and I have seen how harshly the Egyptians abuse them. Now go, for I am sending you to Pharaoh. You must lead my people Israel out of Egypt.” Exodus 3:9-10 NLT
You get His instructions and encouragement. Then the Lord told him, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering. Now go, for I am sending you to Pharaoh. You must lead my people Israel out of Egypt.” But Moses protested to God, “Who am I to appear before Pharaoh? Who am I to lead the people of Israel out of Egypt?” God answered, “I will be with you. And this is your sign that I am the one who has sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God at this very mountain.” But Moses protested, “If I go to the people of Israel and tell them, ‘The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,’ they will ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what should I tell them?” God replied to Moses, “ I Am Who I Am . Say this to the people of Israel: I Am has sent me to you.” God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel: Yahweh, the God of your ancestors—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you. This is my eternal name, my name to remember for all generations. “Now go and call together all the elders of Israel. Tell them, ‘Yahweh, the God of your ancestors—the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob—has appeared to me. He told me, “I have been watching closely, and I see how the Egyptians are treating you. I have promised to rescue you from your oppression in Egypt. I will lead you to a land flowing with milk and honey—the land where the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites now live.”’ “The elders of Israel will accept your message. Then you and the elders must go to the king of Egypt and tell him, ‘The Lord , the God of the Hebrews, has met with us. So please let us take a three-day journey into the wilderness to offer sacrifices to the Lord , our God.’ “But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless a mighty hand forces him. So I will raise my hand and strike the Egyptians, performing all kinds of miracles among them. Then at last he will let you go. And I will cause the Egyptians to look favorably on you. They will give you gifts when you go so you will not leave empty-handed. Every Israelite woman will ask for articles of silver and gold and fine clothing from her Egyptian neighbors and from the foreign women in their houses. You will dress your sons and daughters with these, stripping the Egyptians of their wealth.” Exodus 3:7, 10-22 NLT
Lastly, I would like to say that God is right there with you in your healing journey. He is our Shepherd and we have all we need because He cares for us and He will always provide for us. He never lies and never fails. Before our exodus, we must also come to let our flesh die daily. This means that with God’s grace and prayer, to humble ourselves before God and surrender to Him as well as keep renewing our minds with His word to transform our hearts. We must take time to spend time with God and make sure we keep our prayer altars lit. Let Him guide us and prepare us for each day as well as our deliverance, however that deliverance looks like to God. God is an amazing God and He loves us so!
We lose a lot of things along the way in our journeys of life like confidence and hope, and sometimes ourselves. Some of us are fighting to regain our health mentally or physically. Some of us are carrying loads of pain and hiding behind masks, no pun intended. But God! He wants us to heal. He wants us to grow. He wants us to be free. I am so excited to bring to you this Bible Reading Plan titled after my latest book, Bring It To The Surface. So, grab your bible and I pray you allow God to bring some things to the surface so that your healing and recovery can start today. And for those already on your healing journeys, I pray this encourages you to not abandon the process and to seek and trust God one day at a time. It is a five day reading plan and its purpose is to guide you towards seeking God for your healing and recovery. So, welcome and enjoy, and let’s draw near to God who loves us beyond measure.
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Did you know that 40 million adults in the U.S. suffer from anxiety? And 25 percent of children suffer from an anxiety disorder (Anxiety and Depression Association of America).
Anxiety can be so limiting, frustrating, scary, and overwhelming. I have dealt with it for years, not initially recognizing what it was and how much it has affected my life. Yet, I serve a mighty God despite what anxiety may say. This may be a process and it may be day by day, step by step, but I will overcome. As I grow and heal as well as learn to trust God, I am also learning to cope with anxiety.
And this year has brought on more stress. So, I am sure more people are feeling anxious. People who have suffered from anxiety prior to the pandemic, you may be even more anxious. So, how do we cope with anxiety?
10 Ways To Cope With Anxiety (These are not in a specific order)
1. When you are anxious, don’t fight what you are physically feeling, don’t try to pause the pain, or suppress your emotions. Often times when I was anxious or having an anxiety attack, I would try and fight it with the intent to hurry and make it go away. But it would only make me feel worse. You are trying to fight your anxiety attack from rising when your body is already in fight or flight mode. Sounds crazy don’t it but I would do just that. After finding such tip on another google search and practicing it, I found not fighting it helped me to calm down much more effectively and quicker than it would have fighting it. Sometimes, we try to avoid what we feel. Feel it. Then take a deep breath and release it.
2. Rest. Don’t just take naps. But for people who are constantly busy and rarely take naps, every now and then we need to incorporate nap time. Get some sleep. I realized my lack of sleep or lack of quality of sleep also triggers my anxiety. Even lack of healthy eating and lack of eating adequate meals can trigger anxiety. Ok so back to rest. Pause to pray and play. Enjoy the moment. Embrace the present. Catch up on self-care, family time, organizing and even doing some things God has laid on your heart to do that you have wanted to do for awhile. Rest means pausing to be productive and present.
3. Practice deep breathing. I am still learning how to properly do this but it helps to tell your body to calm down by releasing adequate oxygen in your body through your blood and a calm order to your brain. And it is helping. It lets me tell my body “ok, I feel you.” “Im paying attention. We are going to be okay.”
4. Watch something funny and laugh daily. Mass consumption of reading and watching videos of what’s going on right now can be unhealthy. I was reading something recently about a new rare symptom or so in kids getting Covid and I could feel my eyesight get blurry and head start to hurt. It was overwhelming. Fear is increasing in the land. God did not give us a spirit of fear but that of power, love and a sound mind. So, remember that and laugh away. Laughter has been a good distraction and great medicine.
5. Pray and read the Word of God. His Word is alive and active. God’s promises and Word still stand. He is God Almighty and the prayers of the righteous availeth much. Keep praying. Keep reading His Word. I will read His Word and God will pinpoint something to pray regarding a situation. Let us involve God in every area of our lives. He cannot fail. He will not fail.
6. Take one day at a time. Don’t worry about tomorrow. You are not there yet. Focus on today. Don’t rush the process. And trust God one day at a time. Be patient. Be patient with yourself. Be patient with others. Be patient with God after all He is patient with us.
7. Practice self-care and add it to your calendar if you have to. You’d be surprise how some people with anxiety are consumed with worry and meeting the needs of others that they tend to neglect their own care. And sometimes it isn’t the physical care they neglect, but the mental and emotional care.
8. Get therapy and seek God. It is okay to get therapy. Talking with someone who is neutral, is not directly involved in your pain and personal business, and is trained in guiding you towards self-awareness, identifying the trauma and guiding you to solutions as well as identifying choices you have to heal and move forward is a great resource and support. Moreover, seek God, for His wisdom is not of this world. He created you and first loved you so He has, and knows, and wants what is best for you. He has the solutions you need. And He wants you to be free from the spirit of fear.
9. Do your healing homework. What triggers your anxiety? Why are you worried? Upon prayer and the Holy Spirit’s counsel, I found that a particular workplace was one of my anxiety triggers. I was then able to pray concerning such and delve deeper as to why I would feel anxious there and begin the work to have a better experience in that environment. Things changed and you know what, the change started in me first. I had to learn to see the people in this environment the way God did. I had to, well am still learning to, learn to see myself the way God sees me also.
10. Learn effective coping techniques. What are some things you can do to manage your stress and anxiety? What are some things you like to do to relax or have fun? Are they healthy and effective? Like listening to some good old music. I know someone told me they have been listening to Stevie Wonder. I listen to 90’s music and sometimes just worship music. Sometimes, I watch funny things like a comedy sketch. Laughter is good medicine as I mentioned before. I love taking walks. I journal sometimes. I also take time to acknowledge how I feel. Being transparent with myself and others helps me as well as others. Moreover, I am learning to be more transparent with God. Not that He doesn’t know, but sharing the matters of your heart with God is refreshing and empowering. Reading books. Cooking. Sharing a meal with family and friends. Helping someone else helps take your mind off of you for a short while and blessing someone else blesses you. I also have recently started praying in tongues more in the morning. I wake up a lot of mornings with anxiety so praying in tongues and worshiping God has been a great help. It takes my mind off of me and puts it back on God.
What are other ways one can cope with anxiety?
Disclaimer: I am not a therapist or expert on anxiety. These are merely tips from research and from my own experience and are not intended to cure, treat, or diagnose medical conditions.
I am so excited about completing my new book. I didn’t know it would lead to the theme it has now, but God has me on a healing journey and the title change was so imperative. This healing journey has been one that has been lengthy, uncomfortable, challenging, yet imperative, enlightening, and such a blessing. I have discovered, thanks to the Holy Spirit and His grace to not abandon the process, so many things about myself. I have learned some triggers to my anxiety and where certain fears began. I am also learning to trust God and receive His unfailing love. I am learning to see myself the way God does. Moreover, prayer, learning to be transparent with God as well with others, facing my fears (one at a time), the Word of God, therapy, learning to be more present with myself, others and God are some things that have been crucial to this journey. (Note: I am still a work in progress.) Writing is another component of this journey and it has served as an outlet to express myself, learn, and cope. I have realized that my writing also serves as a tool to encourage others. My book, Bring It To The Surface, is not only full of poetic inspiration and encouragement but a journal to help you too to start your journey of healing and provide a space for self-reflection.
If you are feeling empty or lost, hurt or hopeless, stripped or depleted, know God who began a good work in you shall continue to perform it until the day of Christ Jesus. Know that He will also never leave you, nor forsake you. Whatever it is the enemy has killed, stolen, and destroyed in your life, God can revive, recover, and restore. And in order to heal and receive the abundant life Jesus came to give us, we have to allow God to bring some things to the surface. We can trust God who first loved us and gave His only begotten Son in order for you and me to have an eternal love and life. So, let the healing begin. Confess it, express it and then address it. God can handle your pain and God can provide the answers you need. I am so excited for this book to reach your hands and heart, and I pray you allow God to bring some things to the surface.
I love the Walking Dead tv show. I just recently began watching season 10 which first aired October 6, 2019. I love seeing Rick’s people evolve, persevere, and overcome challenge after challenge. And I can always find a lesson or two in an episode. In episode eight, we see how Ziddiq’s PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder that isn’t mentioned but one can conclude that is what he is dealing with including survivor’s guilt) has heightened. Finally, Ziddiq (played by Avi Nash) shares with someone the pain from seeing those he loved murdered right before his eyes. We also find out that there is a traitor in Alexandria. I felt something was off about this person but dismissed it. However, later in the episode and as they flashback to the traitor’s story, my suspicions turned out to be right. He was actually an imposter. When his true identity is discovered, what he tells Rosita made me immediately think of one of the enemy’s tricks. The imposter at Alexandria tells Rosita (played by Christian Serratos) that they are not as strong as they think they are. She expresses her growing fear to Gabriel (played by Seth Gilliam) and is starting to believe what the imposter says. And that is one trick our enemy uses to weaken and disarm us. He wants to bind us with fear and doubt. Fear and doubt are crippling, accusing, and draining. However, we do not have to walk around with fear. As believers, we must remember that God did not give us a spirit of fear but that of power, love, and a sound mind. We do not have to let doubt weaken our faith’s muscle. He who is in us is greater than he that is in the world and we can do all things through Christ Jesus who strengthens us. The enemy will use trials and tribulations, lies, doubts and fear to cause us to shrink back and lose confidence, feel alone, doubt or forget God’s providential care, unfailing love, and almighty power. But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one (2 Thessalonians 3:3 NIV). The enemy will also send imposters our way like enemies posing as friends as well as distracting and toxic baes and boos when we least expect it. But let us be alert and guard ourselves with the truth and power of God. Jesus guarded Himself in His time of weakness and wilderness during his 40 days and nights of fasting. He guarded Himself with the truth of God’s Word and by remaining confident in His Father.
So, let’s keep our eyes fixed on Jesus for He is the author and finisher of our faith. God is omnipotent and omniscient. He will protect us and guard our lives from the lies and imposters of the enemy. What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:31-39 NIV)