God’s Remedy For Anxiety

In our nation alone, it’s become recognized that a good majority of people live in a state of anxiety. In turn, depression is being seen more and more as a form of anxiety.

With just over 325 million people in our nation, and growing, around 1/4 (about 72.3 million) of our population struggles with some form of anxiety (including depression). This number, however, doesn’t include those who go undiagnosed.

I am one of the 72.3 million people who has been diagnosed with anxiety and struggle with it – daily.

Sometimes the anxiety isn’t intense, and sometimes it overflows from every pore in my body in the form of a panic attack. My chest tightens, my breath becomes short, my vision narrows and I feel as though I am in vacuum sucking the very life from my body. I’ve had this happen a couple of time while driving due to feeling overly anxious about trucks sideswiping me on the highway, or inconsiderate drivers cutting me off.

My family bloodline has a lineage of struggles with anxiety on both sides, and how it’s all been handled in my bloodline has been the unhealthiest forms of coping that make every counselor, psychologist, and psychiatrist out there nod their head and say, “Yep, makes sense.

  • Alcoholism.
  • Child abuse (emotional, mental and physical).
  • Narcissism (mainly in the form of abusive behavior upon family members).
  • Drug abuse.
  • Gambling.
  • Perfectionism.
  • Codependency.

I don’t come from an undamaged linage. I am pretty sure I am not alone in making this statement.

As humans, alone, we all come from some form of damage in our families.

When we read the Bible, we see it strewn with damage from humanity that passes on from one generation to the next. And then the next. And then the next. And it goes on and on. And God has a remedy for all this damage.

All throughout the Old Testament, His people come to Him for that remedy, take it as prescribed, and live well. But then as generations pass, the remedy He continually prescribes His people becomes just another “pill” that is too:

  • Time-consuming.
  • Life-sacrificing.
  • Painful.

Yet, no matter how it all feels and appears in our own feeble, human, minds, God continually prescribes the same prescription for all anxiety:

Himself.

Anxiety is living in fear of the unknowns of tomorrow.

In turn, our humanness seeks comfort from the pain this creates. Enter in, unhealthy coping mechanisms in the effort to silence those pains.

Sometimes, the anxiety comes from genetic factors. Sometimes, the anxiety births from abuses ranging from emotional, mental, physical, sexual and spiritual – or any combination of them. Sometimes, the anxiety births from traumatic experiences such as war. And sometimes, the anxiety is a combination of genetics, abuses and/or traumatic experiences.

In turn, medication can help calm the human nerves to help promote clear thinking so as to help make healthier choices. But medication isn’t the answer. It’s just a help.

My normal regime for anxiety management includes the following:

  • Supplements (many, including 5-HTP, Fish Oil, Maca, and Magnesium)
  • Knitting
  • Celebrate Recovery meetings
  • Talking with my counselor and my sponsor regularly

Yet, these four things are only scratching the surface of the deeper issues I deal with physically…and spiritually. I also need to add in:

  • Walking and/or Christ-Centered Yoga (I will address the Yoga in another post soon)
  • Reducing sugar intake in my diet
  • Reducing salt intake in my diet
  • Drinking the water my body needs daily

When I’ve used this regime regularly, my life goes more smoothly. But the most important element of a full regime is something I desperately need Every.Day. For without it, everything else done is in vain:

  • Praying for His peace daily, and studying His word daily.

And this has been my most challenging part of this regime.

Why? Why do I refrain from this discipline above all when I benefit the most from engaging in it daily?

This is why: Our humanity, the sinful ways of it, seeks not God – but only things of this world. Pain seeks the easiest way out, rather than doing what is absolutely necessary to help heal the wound.

Vince Miller wrote a wonderfully encouraging article a couple of years ago that addresses this very discipline that God prescribes for us concerning our struggles with anxiety:

“When anxiety strikes, practice the shift. Transfer your focus from the things of earth to the concerns of heaven.”

“‘But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness’ (Matthew 6:33). He tells us to move our minds from the worries of this life to issues of greater importance, to shift our focus to eternal values.

Breathe. Trust. Transfer your anxiety to God and place your concern where it belongs: on the things of God.”

God’s remedy for anxiety isn’t found on this earth, but only in His Kingdom – where He is. And in Christ, we have Him with us; therefore, connecting with Him will help relieve the burden of the fears that seek to devour us whole.

The remedy isn’t found in all the medicines and supplements to be taken, exercises to be engaged in, or dietary guidelines to follow. While these things help calm us, they don’t truly get to the root fears that trigger our anxieties.

Only God can truly tackle fear, for He overcame the fears this whole world faces and endures.

His remedy for us all is one thing: faith.

Faith in the truth and reality that Jesus is Lord and Savior, and that He has overcome this world, and will return.

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” John 14:1-3