Today I received some very upsetting news that immediately sent me into panic mode.
The news was related to a job situation. I can’t go into the details here because it’s confidential. Suffice it to say that I immediately became worried about how we were going to survive financially. I became anxious, scared, worried, and all kinds of terrible scenarios went through my mind.
Then, God showed up, without me even asking.
Amid my anxiety and turmoil, I received an email from a Bible app service I use (YouVersion) and the subject line was, “Plans for overcoming anxiety and fear.”
I kid you not!
The email listed several devotional programs they offer that address anxiety. One of the lines in the email was, “If you need encouragement, try one of our Featured Plans on Anxiety. Allow God to meet you and fill you with His peace.” Boy, did I need God’s peace right then!
So, I clicked on one of the devotionals listed and the first scripture reading for the first day was Philippians 4:4-7 (Amplified Bible), (emphasis mine):
4 Rejoice in the Lord always [delight, take pleasure in Him]; again, I will say, rejoice! 5 Let your gentle spirit [your graciousness, unselfishness, mercy, tolerance, and patience] be known to all people. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious or worried about anything, but in everything [every circumstance and situation] by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, continue to make your [specific] requests known to God. 7 And the peace of God [that peace which reassures the heart, that peace] which transcends all understanding, [that peace which] stands guard over your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus [is yours].
That scripture wasn’t new to me, but as frequently happens in my walk with the Lord, it felt new to me because of my current situation and the news I had earlier received.
God had met me right in the midst of my fear and anxiety. He had shown me, through his Word, that He’s got my back, that He will work out everything for my benefit and for His glory. He also reminded me of many scriptures about His protection and provision.
- He provides all my needs (Philippians 4:19).
- He has a plan to prosper me and give me a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11).
- If God is for me, who can be against me? (Romans 8:31)
- No weapon formed against me will prosper (Isiah 54:17)
I could go on because there are so many scriptures reflecting God’s faithfulness and love for us and our technology makes it easy to find them. A Google search for scriptures about God’s protection resulted in over 9 million sources, the first one being “30 Best Bible Verses About Protection.” Using the Bible apps available to us we can also compare different translations which can be very helpful in enhancing our understanding of the scripture.
I don’t typically post to social media about my faith and perhaps I should share more. Today, I felt like sharing this because I know so many people battle anxiety and fear. The email from YouVersion states that over 280 million people struggle with anxiety of some form. (https://ourworldindata.org/mental-health)
I pray that my struggle today meets someone where they are in their fight and that, through this, they find some peace.
P.S. One other way God provided for me today is that He gave me this blog post. I usually write my blogs on Monday (the day I wrote this) and then schedule them for the following week. Today, after I received the bad news, I was worried that I was too distracted to write. God led me to journal about my experience with anxiety today and that journaling resulted in this blog.
If you or someone you know has an anxiety disorder, please see your doctor. It’s important to get help and it’s not a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength. Take care of yourself. You are the only You there is.