Philippians 4: 6, 7 – Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. [New International Version]
This recipe is guaranteed to work, all the time! There is no special case!
If you have ever experienced anxiety, then you know how wickedly destructive it is, pure and simple! But in two short verses, God has given us a detailed step-by-step guide to eliminate – not just manage – anxiety. In Philippians 4: 6, 7, He tells us at least four things: what we should do? How we should do it? When we should do it? And why we should do it? This and the next two short articles dig into God’s magnificent recipe to completely eliminate anxiety in our lives!
What to do? Stop being anxious, and then present your requests
There are two things we ought to do: We should stop being anxious and then, during that free time we now have, present our request to Him. It seems counter-intuitive that the first step toward eliminating anxiety is to stop being anxious! However, this reveals to us God’s perspective on anxiety: Anxiety is actually something “we” can stop! Then God tells us what to replace anxiety with: we should get busy presenting our request to Him. Think about it; parents actually apply this very principle every day. A child may come to his mother crying uncontrollably. Unfortunately, unless the child calms down first, he will not be able to tell clearly to his mother what is wrong. The child should calm down first, at least for the time necessary to tell what the matter is. Then, after telling his story, he will rely on his mom’s love and expert know-how to calm him down permanently regarding the matter at hand.
It is the same with God. He want us to calm down first! Then He wants us to present our requests to Him. His love and expert know-how will thereafter soon become evident and completely eliminate our anxiety.
But HOW do we present our requests to Him? As we discuss in the next article, knowing how to present our requests is just as, if not more important than just presenting them. Knowing HOW is a key ingredient in God’s recipe for handling anxiety.