I’m no stranger to anxiety. I’ve struggled with it since I was very young. Its morphed throughout the years, sometimes being so loud I can’t think straight, other times so quiet I can barely hear it.
It comes and goes, it shifts its focus.... Yet, it always does the same thing: It steals peace and joy. It pulls me out of the moment.
I happen to be coming out of a very anxious season of my life, and thank God for that.
But I know, all too well, so many people are feeling completely consumed and even crippled by immense anxiety.
Maybe you are, too.
Whether you are experiencing it drastically or minimally, anxiety is a beast.
Like me, maybe you’ve asked and begged God to take the anxiety away from you.
Like me, maybe you’ve wondered where He is in it all.
A while back, I found myself laying in bed at night feeling anxious and thinking, “I know I should pray, but what’s the point? It’s not going to go away.”
I didn’t even want to bring it to God, because I doubted He would take it away.
All I could mutter was, “where are you?”
When I ask this, God reminds me of something:
Being completely healed from something is not the only indicator of His presence.
Yes, God can heal anything, and I believe either on earth or in heaven He will heal everything.
But He doesn’t heal everything in an instant.
So, where is God when I'm anxious?
He’s with me. His Spirit still safely inside of me.
He’s around me. His presence is everywhere, fighting on behalf of me in a spiritual realm I can’t see.
He’s behind me and in front of me. He’s outside of time. He’s in every ounce of anxiety I’ve ever experienced all at once.
Psalm 46:1 says, “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.”
He’s ever-present, and He’s our help.
But His help might not look like instant healing all the time.
It doesn’t make Him less present, and it doesn’t make Him less good.
It means He's in this healing journey with us.
And maybe that’s the whole point.
On this side of heaven, none of us will be whole. Not like we will be in heaven.
None of us will be able to avoid suffering.
Suffering will happen, and if we can learn to keep going to Him even if it doesn’t result in immediate healing, we might just find that a different type of healing is happening in our heart.
A new perspective may emerge.
We learn to see His face in our suffering, instead of seeing Him just in our victories.
(I’m not saying we shouldn’t pray for healing. We should. And I truly believe God wants to heal us. We should also seek help if we need it!)
But if we can live a life that even when we're suffering we can see His face and know His voice…
If we can feel anxious yet trust He is who He is…
I think we’ve got something so much better than an “anxiety-free” life.
We have a life of knowing and walking with our Shepard in the valley.
We have a friend forever.
So if you’re wondering… God is right there with you in anxiety.
And He’s never leaving.
~Kelli Bachara, The Unraveling Blog
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