PEACE FOR THE ANXIOUS HEART | ABI GLEDHILL
Anxiety does not always get talked about as much as it should be in Church,
but also, in everyday life it often feels like a taboo subject. So many of us suffer with anxiety and it has got to be talked about, we can’t just pretend it’s not there in the hope that it will go away because, quite frankly, it won’t.
I have felt God urging me for some time now to talk about mental health, specifically anxiety. He has spoken in lots of different ways, but in particular for me through music. I find that some lyrics in songs will feel ‘louder’ than the rest and I can tell that God is trying to say something through them. A song by Hillsong Young and Free called PEACE has been this song recently. The line “peace for the anxious heart” has really stood out to me and the more I have listened to the song, the more that I have felt God urging me to talk about what has been affecting me so much.
Anxiety ‘defined’ is “a feeling of worry, nervousness or unease about something with an uncertain outcome.” I find it crazy that something that feels so powerful, so confusing and that can have such a massive effect on our lives can be put plain and simple into a 13 word sentence. That is it put simply, but anxiety is really so much more; it can become so much that it is physically crippling. Anxiety has the ability to take over your body, you may have no idea what is actually wrong, but you feel like you no longer have control and it’s terrifying.
It can get to the point where we feel we can’t deal with it because it just doesn’t make sense. Our minds can become so tight and busy that we find we can no longer even know what we’re thinking – we become numb. The feeling of numbness is gripping and difficult to comprehend. It becomes difficult to gather your thoughts, you can’t put them into order and when you know it doesn’t make sense then you panic more.
Anxiety is not something that I have talked about much before because, honestly, I have always just tried to convince myself that if I ignore it then it just won’t exist, but you can’t just ignore it because it doesn’t go away unless it is dealt with. God doesn’t want you to feel the way you do, He wants the best for you and He wants to heal you of what is trying to get between you and your relationship with Him.
For me I have learnt that the more you ignore it and the more you don’t talk about it, the worse it gets and the more power you give it to fester inside and for things to get to the point of complete and utter panic – this is an ongoing journey of accepting the fact that you don’t have to do things on your own; it’s okay to ask for help.
Anxiety is a negative feeling which has the ability to completely blind you of the Truth that has already set you free. It clouds your heart with the hurt and pain you feel from the enemy causing anxious thoughts and feelings within you. In order to be rooted in God and to fulfill what He has got planned for you, you have got to deal with what is going on in your heart because that is the point of connection with Jesus and where you become rooted in relationship with Him. Banning Liebscher says in his book ‘Rooted’ that “to remain in God is to develop His heart-to-heart connection with you to the point where you become fully united with Him” and “only when you remain in Him will you produce fruit that lasts”.
How can we be producing fruit that lasts when anxiety tries to get the better of us and come in between us and our relationship with God?
The enemy tries to weave his way in and separate us from God. But what we have to remember is that the enemy has already been defeated and God is right here; we’ve just got to reach out to Him and proclaim His name and His victory over the anxiety that tries to run our lives –
There is victory in His name.
This isn’t an easy journey. It is a journey of perseverance and devotion, working on what is most raw in your heart, it will be vulnerable and it may bring up pain and hurt from the past, but in order to move forward with God you have got to work on your heart. You’ve got to fight it head on, anxiety cannot win because it has already lost.
In all of this we have an incredible, loving Father in whom you can have confidence. He has got you through all of this, you’re not alone. He is the peace in all situations, He is the peace within you.
He is peace to the anxious heart.
Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”