What do you usually do when you are feeling burdened and discouraged in life? Some people ignore, others act, still more wallow in circumstances. All three have been my response in differing scenarios, but I am realizing that each of them lands me somewhere I don’t care to be. Hang in there with me, I’ll explain this all. 🙂
I have allowed the rain we have had the past days and weeks to really discourage me. Yesterday was no different with overcast skies and moisture in the air. However, I desperately wanted to take advantage of my time before heading to the dentist for a mouthful of procedures (including having a wisdom tooth extracted). You might be thinking at this point that I’m a glutton for punishment attending a conference all weekend, barely getting back to our routine, and then having a bunch of dental work done. I know myself though-if I waited longer, I would come up with some excuse for why it shouldn’t happen and that would lead to a root canal or something MAJOR later.
Here’s the truth-I haven’t been to the dentist for 10 years! That reality didn’t set in until I was filling out paperwork at the office a couple weeks back, and I began to hold myself accountable. No more putting this off. As much as I have learned to make my health a priority, oral hygiene and preventive dental health is worth the investment of time and money. No more procrastinating!
So, as my anxiety and fear were in my throat, I fought to maintain self control and prepare for the inevitable recovery afterwards. Then, as I was on the brink of spiraling into an explosion of stress and feels, I focused on the simple steps I knew would help me process.
- Focus on truth.
- Fuel my body well.
- Pray and surrender my stress/anxiety.
- Do the things I need to prepare.
Each of these steps is really just keeping things simple, not over-complicating all that I’m trying to accomplish, and ultimately choosing to place my trust in the Lord. I repeated truth to myself every time I felt anxiety creeping into my chest. This verse was a steady reminder to me that the anxiety I was tempted with was just a distraction:
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”
-Philippians 4:6, NASB
This first phrase, “Be anxious for nothing,” is thrown around as a band-aid of a platitude in an attempt to make someone feel better, but the real comfort comes in the latter half of the verse. We get the “how”, “but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”
It’s in the surrender that we experience the dependence and trust that brings freedom from our anxious thoughts and feelings. Trust Him today, no matter what you are facing.
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