Work is inevitable. Worry is optional. Feeling overwhelmed, overloaded, and overcome with burdens may not mean you’re overworked but over-worried. Being overly-worried about your work or world, not the actual workload itself, is often the cause of intense feelings of pressure, distress, or anxiety.
Belief = Grief OR Belief = Relief
Our beliefs are powerful. They determine how we feel. Grief or relief can come from a belief. For example, if you believe that you’re going to fail at the task you’re working on no matter how hard you try, then you are naturally going to feel grief or a sense of dread or anxiety about what you have to do. However, if you believe that you’re best effort will be good enough, then you will experience a sense of relief emotionally. It’s all about the belief you’re believing.
So, often people live with a vague sense of suppressed anxiousness but without a clear notion of what is causing their negative feelings. We feel low energy, so we think we’re working too hard. We feel low emotionally, so we assume we need to slow our schedule down a bit. However, I’m learning that sometimes, the problem is not the amount of activity, but the amount of anxiety. It’s not that you’re working too hard, it’s that you’re worrying too hard. How can we overcome anxiety? The scriptures teach us a 5 STEP PROCESS FOR RELIEVING ANXIETY based on Philippians 4:5-9.
1. REMEMBER JESUS IS COMING SOON…IT’S TEMPORARY!
5 Let everyone see that you are unselfish and considerate in all you do. Remember that the Lord is coming soon.
Whatever situation is causing you anxiety, it is only temporary. Tell yourself that truth! And then BELIEVE IT! This will give you hope to cope. No matter what you’re going through Jesus is coming to rescue His children.
2. PRAY ABOUT YOUR SITUATION…GOD IS IN CONTROL!
6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank him for his answers.
You don’t need a manual on how to pray. Just open up your heart to the invisible God and talk to Him. Tell Him what’s bothering you. Tell Him what you want, what you think you need and leave your burdens at His feet.
3. RECEIVE GOD’S PEACE…LET GO AND LET GOD:)
7 If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.
This ‘peace’ spoken of in this verse actually means that “the peace God Himself lives with every moment will be given to you as well”. Let God give you His peace. Don’t pray and then stray. Pray and then stay…in an attitude of prayer so that this spiritual transfusion of “peace” can flow.
4. THINK THE RIGHT THOUGHTS…RULE YOUR MIND!
8 And now, brothers, as I close this letter, let me say this one more thing: Fix your thoughts on what is true and good and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely, and dwell on the fine, good things in others. Think about all you can praise God for and be glad about.
Our thoughts create our feelings. You can either have a thought or a thought can have you! You must stay in control of your mind. As Horace quipped, “Rule your mind or it will rule you.”
5. FOLLOW PAUL’S EXAMPLE…TAKE ACTION OUT OF FAITH!
9 Keep putting into practice all you learned from me and saw me doing, and the God of peace will be with you.
God is not opposed to EFFORT, He’s opposed to EARNING! We can’t earn God’s love or approval, but we can make an effort to obey Him. His grace means He will give you the power to practice your faith in Him.
Paul says do these things “and the God of peace will be with you”. May the peace of Christ be yours today!