Anxiety can become a state of torment.
It’s easy to feel scared when we’re faced with uncertainty and phantoms. It’s uncomfortable, unknown, lurking… it shines a light on how little control we have over a situation and holds it there.
I’m no stranger to this feeling.
Dealing with anxiety used to cause me sleepless nights. I felt lost in the world to deal with my thoughts, worries and fears. The mix often lead to panic, nausea and stress.
Like many, many others, I dealt with it alone.
And like many others, I looked for peace in anything outside of me. Counseling. Distraction. Routines. Chaos. Relaxation. Meditation.
Even though I thought I was stuck with the worst of the worst when it came to dealing with anxiety, God showed me the way to get through it. Today I meditate on His word when I want to turn toward Him, such as with these 17 Bible verses to calm your nerves.
(Please note: I believe there are different levels of severity when it comes to anxiety and that we should use discernment on how we seek help. I’m sharing ways that the Lord showed me that He was bigger than the anxiety I was battling–even moment to moment–and I pray it helps you!)
Overcome Anxiety with Truth
When I stopped running from God, I found a love so pure, so real and so TRUE, that it filled something in me that was lost, empty and scared to death. When I embraced Jesus Christ as my savior and thanked him for dying for my sins — and believed, truly, that he died for me — I realized there was no turning back.
The truth is, God is in control. It starts with Him; it ends with Him.
He goes with us into our darkest hours. We have someone to turn to, someone more powerful than anyone and anything on earth. Whatever we fear, whatever we’ve done and whatever has been done to us… we have a place to go and seek wisdom.
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Deuteronomy 31:6)
Overcoming anxiety in a given moment means facing fear with truth, especially when we admit ultimate truths and pray for help to go from there. Pray for truth to rule your life in the name of Jesus Christ. It’s not always easy because we live in a world of lies.
Most of us don’t know what to do with the situations we find ourselves in. We get stressed, and the truth gets fuzzy.
This is a great translation of James 1:5-8:
If you don’t know what you’re doing, pray to the Father. He loves to help. You’ll get his help, and won’t be condescended to when you ask for it. Ask boldly, believingly, without a second thought. People who ‘worry their prayers’ are like wind-whipped waves. Don’t think you’re going to get anything from the Master that way, adrift at sea, keeping all your options open.
Overcome Anxiety with Faith
Trusting God with your life is not as easy as it sounds. Once upon a time I had no idea what that even meant. I thought it was enough to go to church sometimes and pray, even if I wasn’t sure my prayers were being heard.
But putting total faith in God requires us to let go of what we think we know and let him handle it.
Once we desire a spirit of truth, we trust that he will steer us in the right direction according to his will. In faith we know that God’s will is the best way for us, even when we do not understand it.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
I can look back at some negative situations in my life and see good in them — God was refining me. At the time they felt excruciating, but now I see the error of my ways. When we don’t have God at the center, the world competes for that spot, and that’s when we become deceived.
1 Peter 5:7 tells us to cast all of our anxieties upon the Lord because he cares for us. It requires faith to take a situation to God — in all its ugliness and darkness — and lay it at the foot of the cross, trusting fully that he will work to heal the situation.
And in these moments, our faith can grow. It’s not comfortable, but transformation takes place. James 1:2-8 tells us:
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
Overcome Anxiety with Thanksgiving
Feeling thankful during a flash of anxiety sounds counter-intuitive, but it’s exactly what allows us to embrace the truth (God is in control), grow in faith (I’m giving this to you, Lord. Please help) and remain joyful in miserable moments.
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” (Philip. 4:6)
In the past if I felt worried about something, I would feel a sense of dread. The downward spiral would either take over or not… and I wasn’t always sure which way that would go or why.
Now when I feel tempted to worry, I say a silent prayer in my heart like this: “God, please help me to have the mind of Christ right now. I need you.”
God works in our lives and does MIRACLES. I have prayed about situations and have seen God change the outcome — prayed for help in times of tension and have seen God clear the air. My husband and I have prayed together for friends and family and saw people healed, relationships mended, spirits renewed and the list goes on and on.
God is faithful and he wants the best for us. When we trust that, we do not need to fear evil.
“I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
God offers the kind of healing that goes to the soul — it goes straight through us into the darkest of the dark.
For anyone who has ever dealt with stress, worry or anxiety, you know how tormenting it can be when it grabs hold. Without God in control, we are left feeling vulnerable and unprotected. Let Him be the one who grabs hold. I’m praying to die to myself day after day, sometimes even moment after moment, so that God can prevail in my life.
We turn to Him and say, “I need you Lord” He is there, holding us as we manage to put one foot in front of the other and make it through another day.
True peace, true courage and true love comes from God. The Lord Jesus Christ died for us so that we would be set free from the evil of the world. Nothing can win against the one who conquered death. Keep in mind:
- Psalm 56:11 says, “in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?”
- “For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
- And if you’re still worried about what tomorrow could bring: “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Matt. 6:34)