Combating Anxiety with Truth
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8
Fear often reveals what we believe to be true about who God is. For instance, when we are anxious about the future, we are presuming God does not have our best interest in mind. Ed Welch says it perfectly, "Worriers are visionaries minus the optimism."
We often think we know exactly what God is up to, and we assume He is up to no good. We think we are being productive by losing sleep and obsessively mulling over a potential problem we may face tomorrow. We assume we need to worry because we believe God won't handle it otherwise. Oh, how prideful and how wrong we are! How easily we believe lies about who God is, and how easily those lies produce fear in our hearts.
My favorite verse to meditate on when I'm anxious is Philippians 4:8. Here, we are told to think about what is true. To fight fear, we need to replace the lies in our hearts with truth. Truth can only be found in God's Word. When we examine Scripture, we find God is exactly what Philippians 4:8 is describing...He is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and worthy of praise.
Let's take a look at what Scripture says about who God is. Knowing these truths about God will equip us to combat fear in our lives.
God Is Sovereign
The same God who made the universe is the God that holds you in His hands. As R.C. Sproul has said, there is not one maverick molecule in the universe, and if there was, God would not be God. Truly, He is sovereign over all the details in our lives.
"Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases." Psalm 115:3
"The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps." Proverbs 16:9
"Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand." Proverbs 19:21
God Is a Good Father
"Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him." Psalm 34:8
"No one is good except God alone." Mark 10:18
"The LORD is good to all, And His mercies are over all His works." Psalm 145:9
If God were only sovereign and not also good, we would have every reason to fear. But God is good, and He does love us and have our best interest in mind. Out of God's love, He orders all things to work together for the good of His children. He is indeed a good Father. The capacity that an earthly father loves his children is nothing in comparison to the way God loves His blood-bought children.
“If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” Matthew 7:11
God Is Trustworthy
“He will not allow your foot to slip; your Protector will not slumber. Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.” Psalm 121:3-4
When God created you, He ordained that your body and mind would need to sleep every night before continuing on to another day. Needing to sleep is not a choice. Some of us may go long hours without sleep, but our bodies will eventually shut down for necessary rest.
This simple act of closing your eyes and losing consciousness for hours at a time is God’s way of reminding you of your need for Him. In this simple act of sleeping, you are forced to surrender control. While you sleep, the world keeps on turning, the clock keeps on ticking, other people across the globe are awake and moving, and pieces of your life are changing with every second. The reality is, you do not know what you will wake up to in the morning. This reality makes a fearful man restless. But a child of God can truly rest because she knows that God is trustworthy.
“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself.” Matthew 6:34
God gives us permission to leave tomorrow’s troubles for tomorrow. We can do this because God will still be sovereign and good tomorrow. By morning, you will receive new mercies and grace for the new day and you can trust that God remains on His throne.
God Will Meet You There
God gives us grace for every day and for every circumstance He ordains in our lives. So tonight, when fear begins to overcome you about tomorrow, remember no matter what, God will meet you there with the perfect measure of grace. You need not fear tomorrow because your loving Father is already there.
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9
About the Author
Chelsey Meissner is obsessed with seeing and savoring Jesus. She is a lover of books, coffee, cats, running, and all things vintage. Chelsey is excited to travel the the world with her husband, Eric, who is a Marine Officer.