My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (Psalm 73:26 NIV)
For the next seven days I want to invite you to take a journey with me into the valley where the giant called anxiety looms large—threatening, taunting, intimidating, incapacitating, and paralyzing us with threats of doom and demise.
I know this giant well, and have suffered defeat in this valley in years past. Yet, I also know there is a way to overcome anxiety. I know first hand you can emerge on the other side of the depression and dread, and live to tell about someone who is more powerful than whatever has a grip on you. It’s not a quick fix I’ll offer, nor a promise that you will escape the fight. But I’d like to tell you about a champion, a giant-slayer, who is on your side in the battle.
Before we take the first steps, it’s important that we not oversimplify the issue of anxiety. This giant is real. And it can be deadly.
Anxiety and its cousins—panic, worry, fear and dread— is complex. There are spiritual, mental, physical, emotional, genetic, and circumstantial factors that can cause us to fall into the grip of depression, pulling us away from those we love and shuttering our ability to deal with everyday life. To underestimate the problem, or blow it off with a, hey, shrug it off and bounce back mentality, is a mistake.
As well, anxiety is personal. I have heard stories of other’s struggles with anxiety and collapse that sound similar to mine, yet every person’s battle is different and every experience is unique. A “one-size-fits-all” approach isn’t going to be helpful here.
But coming to terms with the formidable size of this giant in no way diminishes the promise of God—you can live free from the demoralizing grip of anxiety.
It’s imperative for you to know that you are not standing helplessly alone in your valley. God Almighty is with you and He is fighting for you. In fact, He’s already taken on every “goliath” and won!
For the next seven days we will set our gaze on him. We won’t ignore that a behemoth called fear or worry or panic has its foot on our neck. But we will choose to lift our eyes and see someone bigger and more powerful—someone who loves us and plans to lead us back into the light.