God Is Dependable Even When Life Is Undependable
Note: For previous posts in this blog mini-series, please visit: Part 1: http://bit.ly/aHstk, Part 2: http://bit.ly/20R01P, Part 3: http://bit.ly/HAoxI, Part 4: http://bit.ly/1I6XmF, Part 5: http://bit.ly/19Jdqt, Part 6: http://bit.ly/19vCXx, Part 7: http://bit.ly/21wPLg, Part 8: http://bit.ly/m50On, Part 9: http://bit.ly/4vhNIt.
Does worry, doubt, or fear get the best of you sometimes? Do you wonder where anxiety comes from and how to defeat it in your life and the lives of those you love? Then we need a biblical anatomy of anxiety.
And, we need God’s prescription for victory over anxiety.
God Is Dependable
What message does someone struggling with anxiety need?
When life is bad, we need to remember that God is good—all the time. And when life is undependable, we need to know that God is dependable—all the time.
Life can feel like it is out of control, capricious. Stuff seems to happen for no reason and with little or no warning.
When cares overwhelm, we need to remember that we can cast all our cares on Him, because He cares for us. We can depend on Christ’s care because He is the same yesterday, today, and forever—He is eternally dependable.
Listening to Sad Stories
Helping one another to embrace our dependably caring God is the ultimate goal. However, that does not necessarily mean that our first response is to spout verses about trust.
Before we race in telling others about God’s story, we need to earn the right to speak by listening to our friend’s story.
People will hear us as we talk about God’s story of healing only if we have been compassionately listening to them talk about their story of hurting.
It’s excruciating to feel enslaved to fear. It’s confusing and even maddening to have something so good (that “vigilance” that we spoke of in Parts 1-8) turn so harmful.
As a spiritual friend, we want to empathize with our friend who is struggling with anxiety. We want to compassionately identify with them in their story of life that feels so out of control.
If you’ve never experienced panic or phobia, if you’ve never been overwhelmed by nebulous anxiety, if life for you means charging ahead, then you will need to prayerfully ask God to enable you to connect with and comfort those who feel like “anxiety” is staffed on their forehead.
Can you listen to a friend’s hurt without compulsively needing to immediately fix your friend? Or, are you afraid of their fear? Anxious about their anxiety?
The Rest of the Story
What do you listen for? How do you respond to what you hear? We’ll address those vital questions next time.