Help My Unbelief
Sometimes it feels like anxiety is life, and life is anxiety, and if it’s not, we stress about it anyway. We worry that there is something wrong with us if we don’t have something to worry about.
The following article suggests an interesting way to deal with anxieties — limit yourself to three things to worry about, and you will keep your stress to a manageable level.
This approach is so interesting because it doesn’t even suggest attempting to eradicate anxiety; rather, it simply helps us manage it. It resigns us to a lifetime of worry.
Is that the best we can hope for? Managing anxiety? Is there no hope of life without anxiety?
Author Jerry Bridges thinks not. In his book, “Respectable Sins,” Bridges asserts that, because Jesus commands us, “Don’t be anxious,” it is our moral duty not to be anxious.
How are we supposed to rid ourselves entirely of worry? That task in itself is daunting enough to give me anxiety.
Bridge suggests that sufficient trust in God rules out anxiety, because “anxiety is a distrust of God… [and] it is a lack of acceptance of God’s sovereignty in our lives.” Thus, if we can learn to trust God fully, we can have hope of honoring God and relaxing a bit by living life without anxiety.
However, the issue with anxiety is that trying to live an anxiety-free life and trust wholly in God in our own power will inevitably lead to greater anxiety as we fail to accomplish this goal. We must, like the father of the possessed boy in Mark 9, cry out to God, “I believe, help my unbelief!”
Anxiety plays a role in all of our lives to some extent, and some people have an incredibly strong predisposition to it as a result of genes and other life circumstances. While there may not be a simple and fast way to get rid of anxiety in our lives, it is surely something we should strive to eradicate rather than resigning ourselves to live life under its rule.
As we grow in relationship with God, and he continuously shows his faithfulness and trustworthiness, we can gain victories over anxiety as we entrust our worries to him.
Anxiety plays a huge role in the lives of many business owners, as they worry about the success and viability of their business, and also have the stressors of enormous responsibility placed on their shoulders. We must learn to trust God, not only with our personal worries, but also with the worries associated with our families, friends, and businesses. His providence extends to cover all areas of life.
We can’t hope to control all of our live’s circumstances in order to control our anxiety. Rather, we must lean upon something that is solid and faithful, no matter the circumstances in which we find ourselves.
Bridges, Jerry. Respectable Sins: Confronting the Sins We Tolerate . Oil Lamp Books Lic, 2010.