The Lord is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? Ps.27:1
As a Christian, I would love to walk around enveloped in a big cloud of peace—no anxiety, no stress! But I don’t. Instead, I have to seek peace by peeling away at what’s troubling me, talk to God about my fears, and change my inner messages and beliefs. How about you?
Whether our need for peace is due to global and national turmoil, a dysfunctional relationship, or other circumstances, life regularly presents anxiety-inducing situations.
God knows this. Jesus addressed it. And so did the writers of Scripture because they were human beings who faced tough stuff, just as we do. One of the Bible writers I soak in when I recognize I’m anxious, tense, and upset is David the Psalmist. He has so much to teach me and all of us.
Here are eight faith-based affirmations from David’s heart that re-orient my thinking and calm my emotions—but only if they become words from my heart that I act on:
- Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God for I will yet praise Him. 42:5
- The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid? Ps.27: 1
- My heart says of you, “Seek his face!” Your face Lord I will seek. 27: 8
- I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Ps. 27: 13
- The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. Ps.28: 7
- Show me your ways, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me. Ps.25:4
- I love you, O Lord, my strength. Ps. 18:1
- I will praise you as long as I live… I remember you… you are my help… my soul clings to you. Ps.63: 4-7
To go from anxiety and stress to calm and confidence in God:
SOAK in Scripture. Slowly re-read these or other words and phrases three or four times.
SEARCH for deeper insight. Ask: Lord, how does this relate to me? Take time to question your heart in light of the Scripture you’re reading. Is it having God’s intended impact on your thinking and emotions—right now, in the situation that is troubling you?
SEEK out the application. David constantly takes himself by the scruff of the neck and says, “Apply what you know!” Notice in the phrases above how often he turns in faith to God. What phrases can you use to affirm your confidence in God today? Increase the power of these words by looking up other translations and soaking in them. Then put them into practice!
Read Scripture in this way and it won’t be dry, irrelevant words with no application to your struggles. Instead:
- Your heart will be calmed by soaking in the wonder of God’s unconditional love.
- Your mind will be calmed by soaking in the truth God is in control and working for your good.
- Your soul will be calmed by soaking in the assurance that God will never leave you to face life alone.
Want to talk? Our world has many simplistic ideas for finding peace, but they usually give temporary relief and are often harmful in the end. How do you handle your anxiety and stress? Let me know so you can help others.
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