Content below is the transcript for the above video.
So today I’m going to talk about something that most of you understand and have experienced and that is anxiety. Not only myself but many people that are close to me have been going through a very difficult time and circumstances that are very overwhelming, to say the least. So during this time God has been very good at focusing me back where I need to be focused and teaching me how to lower my anxiety.
I’m calling this lowering the great anxiety barometer. I know it’s cheesy, but it seemed appropriate. So here’s what’s interesting is that despite the circumstances that are going on right now in my life and the lives of some of the people that I love very dearly, God is actually using these principles to lower my anxiety. You would think that I should be more anxious with all that is going on, but God is just so good he will show us the answers if we want to be close to Him. If we pray for something in His name for His glory He will show us the way. He truly does answer our prayers.
So this little video and the devotional for January 31, 2023 is going to hopefully be helpful, as helpful to you as it has been for me, in learning how to lower my anxiety barometer.
So first, this is the primary thought that has been instrumental in God lowering my anxiety and it’s this, my anxiety is a very accurate barometer or measurement of my proximity to God. The second part of that thought is God Is Not anxious and when I’m close to him, I’m not either.
So let’s break that down. What does that mean? I mean to be close to God and how does being close to God lower our anxiety? Well, let’s take the second part first. We know that God is not anxious. God doesn’t have any reason to be anxious. He knows the future. He’s not afraid of anything. Time doesn’t mean anything to him. So it’s not like he’s getting old. If you look at what that means, anxiety is on one end of the spectrum and peace is on the other end. Well, Jesus is the Prince of Peace, right?
He’s fully content. He’s fully the eternally self-existing one. He has no negative emotion in him that causes him angst. So how do we get close to that? Well, if we’re close to God and we are trusting him then our anxiety should be nil. Right? It should be. We should be one with him in a way that makes our anxiety level come way down.
Many of y’all have heard me use the phrase, I like to walk the path of peace, right.
So what does that mean? Well as I was praying and asking God what are some simple ways that I can apply to my own anxiety. Simple rules or simple just tools that I can do to lower my
own anxiety. And you know, God is just, he’s just so good just to break it down simple for me.
And so first of all, he made it very clear His word has the answers? Okay. All right, so I’m back in God’s word. He brought me to the the two simple Commandments that we have been given in
God’s word by Jesus.
Love God with all your heart soul and mind.
Love your neighbor as yourself.Matthew 22
What’s interesting is those commands that were given by Jesus in the news Testament we’re just a reiteration of The Commandments that God gave Moses in the Old Testament.The first four Commandments given in the book of Exodus have to do with our relationship with God right?
Don’t have any other gods before me.
Don’t make any carved images and worship them.
Don’t take the name of the Lord in vain.
Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy.
The last six Commandments have to do with our relationship with each other, right? If you read the last six Commandments, it’s all about how you treat other people. So, okay that makes a lot of sense. So how does that lower anxiety? That’s the big question right?
Well when we make God the center of our life by loving him with all of our heart, soul and mind, what does that look like? Well, it means he is the center of everything. We think about Him in everything we do. When we make God the center of our life instead of focusing our problems on ourselves and our own needs and we fill our mind with his word. Guess what he gives us different thoughts. He gives us his thoughts and I know this might sound over simplistic, but it’s not. And it totally works.
You know the saying you are what you eat? You know, if my diet was primarily Twinkies, I would probably look like a Twinkie. So when I fill my mind with thoughts of God, I begin to think more like God who is not anxious. And so God’s presence makes good grooves in my brain.
You know, there’s Dr. Caroline Leaf who is a neurobiologist. I believe I’ve got that right from South Africa. She talks a lot about making new grooves in your brain to inspire good thinking. When we have thoughts of let’s just take your circumstances or my circumstances right now.
If all I’m thinking about is my circumstances and how I’m going to solve these problems on my
own, it’s going to eat me alive. I’m going to be Sleepless. I’m going to not be able to function because I’m focused on my circumstances. And in fact, my circumstances become my god because when you break it down to its simplest terms worship is what we think about the most.
And when God says don’t have any other gods before me he’s saying don’t worship anything
else. And so when I am constantly thinking about how am I going to solve this problem? And having more anxiety and that continues the cycle of thinking or focus.
Here’s another example. Let’s say you desire a relationship with another person and that person is all you can think about. Well that person has become your God because it’s what you think about. It’s what consumes you, it’s what makes your day happen. You’re so focused on this problem or on this person, or desire (whatever that may be) that it consumes you creating grooves in your mind just like a broken record. They just keep getting deeper and deeper and deeper. Where as when you put God’s word in your mind, when you are asking God to fill you with his presence, You begin to think like God. God’s word says,
Whatsoever things are are lovely and good report think on those things.(Philippians 4:8)
Well, there’s nothing more Lovely than God’s word and he’s beautiful. Well, how much greater is the creator beautiful than the creation. He made it. So that means that what he has, who he is, is even more beautiful. And if you think about what is the product of thinking like God? Essentially what is the byproduct for lack of a better word of God flowing through us?
Well the Bible says, the fruits of God’s spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness and goodness. All those things that we all want. Right? We all want love, we all want peace. And so when we fill our mind with God, when we come to the point where we are just make God the center of our life, putting his word in our heart, and asking him to be with us 100% of the time, a shift happens in our minds.
I’ll pray, God, I give you 100% of my time, 100% of my resources, 100% of my love. I want you to have it all, then he comes in and not only does he make me think more like him I begin to act more like him.
Remember the second commandment right to love the Lord your God all your heart, soul and mind and love your neighbor as yourself. Suddenly I shift from thinking about my problems and other people, so that I can say, Okay, what can I do for this person? The focus becomes love which God is love, right 1 John 4:8.
So when I start focusing on God making his will my passion, then suddenly I find that I’m getting a new way of thinking that dispels the anxiety because I can’t have peace and anxiety at the same time. They’re like oil and water.
So when we start filling our mind with the things that God has prepared for us in his word, talking with him asking for his presence to fill us, we suddenly find that we are full of the fruits of the spirit. We start growing those fruits in our own heart, in our own mind. Then those fruits start going out to other people and we wake up and we think I’m not anxious anymore.
Don’t get me wrong. It’s not a one and done. It’s an everyday process. We have to constantly be fighting this because you know that we have an enemy and this enemy does not want us to have peace. He has to disguise himself because you know Satan he makes bad look good and good look bad. He does that and in fact, if we ever looked at Satan without the veil of the disguise that he wears we would run for the hills.
Right now we have the opportunity, you know, if you are born again, if you have received Jesus Christ as your lord and savior, you have an immense opportunity to take your circumstances and to allow God to work those circumstances against themselves, those bad circumstances against themselves and to be used to show people what the fruits of God’s spirit look like in the face of adversity.
Can you think of a better testimony to tell people than the way that God has handled your adversity and to draw people to Jesus Christ. It’s just been such a credible Journey learning how to put my anxiety into a box and learn to keep it there. Then take God’s box of all the fruits of his spirit and inplant them in my soul every day and watch how he makes them grow. As they grow the barometer of that anxiety comes down and I find myself walking that path of peace despite my circumstances.
I hope this helps you. It certainly has been a journey for me and it’s a continuing journey. I’m sure we’ll talk about it some more. God is so good. And I pray that if anyone watching this video is suffering from anxiety, I just pray that you will turn to Jesus Christ. He is the the way the truth and the life. And he is the only way to the Father, the heavenly father. He has so much good planned for you. I just want you to find every last treasure not just on this Earth, but someday when we all meet again in the new heaven and the new earth. Hey, thanks for watching the video.
We would love to hear your thoughts about this devotional. Did God speak to you or challenge your daily walk with him? Or is there a topic that you would like Kimberly to cover or expound on? Please share with us in the comments below.
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This really hit home with me. Thank you Kim.
Bless you, Shirley!
Bless you, Shirley!