Courage and strength are two qualities that seem to be in short supply among the general population in today’s society. Many express being so fearful and insecure that they struggle with anxiety and other more serious disorders.
Everyone feels anxious or worried about heading in for an important interview or taking a life-changing test. But long-term anxiety is more than that. One article defines anxiety as a problem “when it extends beyond logical worry in an unreasonable, unwarranted, or uncontrollable way. Situations that should elicit no negative emotions all of a sudden seem life-threatening or crushingly embarrassing.” (medicalnewstoday.com/ Tim Newman/ 9.5.2018/ Anxiety in the West: Is it on the Rise?). The article also stated that GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) was when a person “feels anxious most days and often struggles to remember the last time that they felt relaxed.” GAD affects more than six million Americans.
So, you might ask what a blogpost about insecurity, fear, and anxiety has to do with hope for courage and strength? Among the many strategies for coping with anxiety and stress is meditation or prayer. As a believer, I have the beautiful opportunity to meditate on and pray the promises found in God’s Word. One verse in Psalm 31:24 states: “Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all you that hope in the LORD.” If read in reverse, the psalmist is saying that if a person hopes in the LORD, he will find both courage and strength. What a beautiful promise for one hoping to find a truth to meditate upon to help cope with anxiety and fear!
In a day when God’s opinion is marginalized or cast aside, a person can find great hope in the promises of the Word. Hope is defined as waiting, expecting, or tarrying for a desired result. Do I expect, wait on, and tarry for the LORD to grant me hope, courage, and strength? Why not? Is He not all powerful and all knowing? Can I not trust Him to use the power of His Word to bolster me and calm my fearful and anxious heart? Yes, I can.
Although I am not an expert on anxiety, having only experienced one anxiety attack in my life long ago, I do know that one strategy for coping with the crippling anxiety that plagues so many today is to learn to practice meditation and prayer. And what better way to find guidance in these strategies than to allow the Word to lead us in truth-filled paths? Can God’s Word provide a strategy for offering courage, strength, and hope for one dealing with anxiety? I say, yes!
NOTE: If you feel that your anxiety has gone beyond what you can handle through prayer, meditation, and other strategies, please talk to your doctor.