This is the time of year many of us are setting goals for ourselves in an effort to determine that this year be better than our last. Resolutions ranging from eating healthier, working out more, or spending time with our family. It makes sense – new year, new us.
How many of you are determining to be less anxious this year?
Approximately 40 million adults between the ages of 18 to 54 are anxious about something. That means, either you or someone you know is currently worried about something.
I confess, I’ve struggled with anxiety most of my life. I clearly remember being worried about nuclear bombs detonating at age 11. Through my middle school years I worried about social interactions, getting good grades in school, and not being accepted. Into high school, my anxiety centered more around getting into a good college and making sure I was establishing a good future for myself. As college drew to a close, I found myself dependent on medication for the next couple of years. My anxiety was through the roof.
I learned something, though, as I found myself unable to continue taking medication for my panic attacks: there is healing.
There is healing to be found even if you struggle with worry. There is hope for you even if you find yourself unable to leave the house today. There is a way for you to overcome your anxiety attacks, and your restless nights.
For me, that healing was found in a renewed faith in the power of Jesus.
I was at a point in my life where I was literally crying myself to sleep every night. The panic attacks were so bad and happening so frequently that each day I worried the next attack would kill me. I cried out to Jesus to prove himself, to show me that he cared for me and could lift this burden from off of me.
But I knew the healing would come at a cost, and that it meant I would have to give up my seat at the controls to Him. And so I tried.
When I was too afraid to leave my house, I prayed for help.
If I felt like a panic attack was near, I took a deep breath and called out His name.
When the worry seemed to overpower my positive thinking, I focused my attention on Christ, and the promises He gives me through His word.
Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
Well, can you? Can you add a single hour to your life by worrying? On the contrary. Worrying can have detrimental effects on your health if you let it.
I want to be an encouragement to you that healing is possible. You may find it through a combination of medication and therapy. Meditation may help you focus on your positive thinking. Opening up to the people around you with your struggles may be all it takes.
Either way, I support you. I want to be a resource for you – someone to talk to, a shoulder to cry on, an accepting friend.
Let’s resolve to make this year better than the last. Let’s not worry about tomorrow, tomorrow has enough worry of its own.
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