Philippians 4: 6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus
Anxiety deep in the heart of an individual causes an oppressive weight and strain on physical ability and resiliency. In Proverbs we are told, Anxiety in the heart of a man weighs it down. A heavy heart is the opposite of what is needed for healing. A joyful heart is good for a long life.
Proverbs 17:22 A merry heart does good, like medicine, But a broken spirit dries the bones.
What is anxiety? What causes anxiety?
A workable definition for anxiety that allows for healing and removal of the unneeded stressors in life goes like this. Anxiety is fear and attraction to the same person, place, or thing. That thing could even be a certain emotion. Some feel anxiety when love rises in their hearts. That is a sad condition and will end in ill health. No one can be healthy without a free expression of love.
So why are we attracted to an item (love) and repulsed by it (fear) at the same time? That really is anxiety. We are unsure if we want to go toward or run away. Do we hug that person or hit them? That is anxiety. Do we get up and go to work in the morning or stay in bed and call in sick? We love our job, but the manager is a tyrant. Anxiety.
Health at work means productivity and joy. Illness means shuffling and complaining.
Health at home means happiness and contentment and gratefulness. Illness means discontent and looking to other families for example and comparison. There is no perfect home or dysfunctional standard of family. There is contentedness and satisfaction and acceptance and enjoyment. Each has a different experience of those. When anxiety exists, no environment can work wellness in us.
Health in the community means safety and security and freedom to move about. There is a liberty of expression and confidence in acceptance from most people. Illness means prejudices and presuppositions and class divisions rule.
Health in government means justice and mercy mixed in right measure. The rules and regulations are understood and achievable and build the common good while protecting the weak. There is no anxiety in that condition. People thrive and concur. When government protects the strong and makes it hard for the weak, anxiety and discontent rule.
Health in the business economy means a profitable fair return for a productive and ingenuity driven enterprise. Whether an individual or corporation of many executes the business there is chance to succeed and accountability for failure. Men and women can thrive and be attracted to success in that environment.
Events in our environment build anxieties. The constant berating of an father that cannot be satisfied with our efforts as a child builds anxiety. A woman shared with me once that since her father only would help her when she absolutely had a need in life, she was anxious every time she wanted to do something fun or enjoyable. The impact of her father’s emphasis on Spartan need above all created an anxiety that took away her joy of living. She overcame with the blood of the Lamb and refresh the thoughts of her mind with acceptance and realizing that in Jesus, He came that her joy might be full.
Misconception can build anxiety. When working with an outreach for children in a large multi-cultural congregation, it became evident many of the Caucasian parents were upset at leaving their children in services. After listening to them and watching the children worship and play together freely, I was struggling to understand their anxiety. The freedom of worship and receiving of healing and presence of God was being affected. Over and over parents would tell me how out of control the children were becoming. Observing the children I could not see any problems. They were children being children. Then it became evident that their cultural definitions had been skewed. They simply equated being black or brown with being disruptive and out of control. Skin color brought out anxiety in the parents. By involving the parents on a personal basis with the children, their prejudices could be removed with reality of experience and we went forward with full inclusiveness and acceptance. Mercy and truth brought healing and power. The ministry moved on to experience powerful moves of the presence of God and healing among the children.
These are just a few examples and explanations. Anxiety is a killer of health and healing and balance. You must root it out. Find the cause. Apply scriptural solution. Enjoy the blessing of health and joy that results.
Father, show us the cause of anxiety in our heart. Give us guidance in Your word to remove and apply the healing salve of Your Holy Spirit to each situation. Let us not be weary in seeking out issues and resolving them with the love and power of Jesus, the Christ. The enemy comes to kill, steal, and destroy. Jesus comes that we might have life and have that life more abundantly in arenas of our life. Balance, Father. Balance our lives.