LET US ASK AN EXISTENTIAL QUESTION
We can be confident in the power of God.
THIS is the last devotional of Pastor José Nuñez Diéguez's Anxiety and Old Testament. Remember that you can contact him at: firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @Joeoikos. You can also listen to him at:
“Whoever is rebellious to your commandment, and does not obey your words in all the things that you command him, let him die; just try hard and be brave."
Joshua 1. 18
After sharing stories and offering reassurance, Old Testament texts often pose a challenge: Will we put the faith we profess into practice? It may sound trite, but it is exactly what we need to hear if anxiety is, at least in part, a product of our will, a habit of mind that can be countered.
“Is not your God one of infinite love and care? How does that relate to your anxiety? “It is unsettling to have a non-Christian pressuring you about the disconnect between your theory and your practice. There is a prayer, called "The Serenity Prayer." When you get to the line "Give me courage to change the things I can" it becomes an imperative, rather than a statement.
The Old Testament fits very well with the phrase "take the bull by the horns." Joshua tells the Israelites to enter Canaan with courage (Joshua 1:18). Proverbs contrasts the wicked and the godly based on how they relate to fear and anxiety: "The wicked flee when no one is pursuing them, but the godly are mighty like lions" (28: 1, NLT). In Elijah, the prophet challenges Ahaz as he worries about the threat of a military invasion: "If you do not stand firm in your faith, you will not stand firm" (7: 9). Fundamentally, these commands are not issued by a finger-pointing, backsliding God as he plunges us into the terrors of life. This God is always present and, even when he commands us to do so, he is already walking with us, guiding us along paths that we cannot travel on our own. This is the message of Psalm 23: 4, which some translations translate: "Even when I walk through a valley of deep darkness, I will not fear because you are with me" (ISV). This translation helps us to see that God walks with us, not only when we approach death, but in all the dark moments of our lives. He is always there.
When this ever-present God asks us to be bold and courageous, we find an amazing paradigm for dealing with anxiety. The life of faith is difficult and requires trusting God beyond what the eye can see. But a life of unbelief is even more difficult because it capitulates to fear and loses sight of God in the resulting panic. Either way, this is not the proverbial case of doubt that displaces faith. Doubt is a tool to question your own fears. It is anxiety itself that undermines faith. Our vocation as anxious believers is to see and appreciate the contradiction between our anxiety and the God who loves us. With the help of other techniques and possibly medications, we combat anxiety simply by believing in God.
“Strong tower is the name of the Lord; The righteous run to him and be lifted up."
Proverbs 18. 10
This challenge has had a great impact on me personally. I am very good at controlling my life. I can anticipate demands, manage projects and persevere. I plan my days on time. But in my darkest moments, especially when I'm tired, I worry about things that I can never control. I worry about the pandemic, cancer, even interactions with strangers.
Left unchecked, these thoughts become the background noise in my life. So there is grace in being told that my anxiety is creating illusions, or in the words of Martin Luther, a theologian who struggled with anxiety like no other, anxiety is all that Satan can do to us now, because the Lord is “ a tower fortress; the righteous run to it and are safe ”(Prov. 18:10).
God bless you.
LET US ASK AN EXISTENTIAL QUESTION
God bless you and bring revelation into your life of the Mind of Christ that is already in you. Remember to acquire the book: "HOW TO UNDERSTAND THAT PRIESTHOOD PRODUCES IN ME MAN", through this link:
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God bless you and always bring revelation into your life of the Mind of Christ that is already in you.
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