“Cast all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you” (1 Pet 5:7)
Science has discovered that the most common psychological problem is anxiety. USA has the highest rates of anxiety in the world. I read that 13% of all Americans take antidepressant medication. Why is it that the people living in the richest country in the world are the most anxious? The answer is not easy to find. But one thing is clear, all people, young and old, rich or poor… they all struggle with anxiety, inferiority complexes and feelings of disappointment in life. Fear and anxiety are related. But there are some differences. Fear is a direct emotional reaction to a problem (job loss, health issues…). Anxiety is described more as a state of mind. The mind is permanently disturbed by troubling thoughts. Anxiety is feeling that things are bad and soon, they will become worst; it is not as connected to reality as fear is. Anxiety has a tendency to grow with time. Mature established anxiety produces depression: “Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, but a good word makes it glad” (PV 12:25). That ‘good word’ able to cure anxiety and fear is found only in the Bible!
Now pay attention please… In the Bible, one of the causes of chronic anxiety is the judgment of God. The world does not like to hear this. The doctors and the psychologists view anxiety just as a weakness of the mind, an emotional upset or a hormonal imbalance. They view anxiety as a tendency coming from a stressful environment or a faulty family lineage. The world excuses anxiety. But this is the Word of God. When you pray for anxious people remember that it may be God’s judgment upon their sins. They may need to repent of hidden sins before they can have peace. “The wicked flee when no one pursues, but the righteous are bold as a lion” (PV 28:1). One of the courses of disobedience includes anxiety. ‘And as for those of you who are left, I will send faintness into their hearts in the lands of their enemies; the sound of a shaken leaf shall cause them to flee; they shall flee as though fleeing from a sword, and they shall fall when no one pursues. They shall stumble over one another, as it were before a sword, when no one pursues; and you shall have no power to stand before your enemies’ (Lev 26:36, 37). The devil is the author of fear and anxiety. He inflames your imagination terrible things. He uses TV news to make you more anxious about the future of this planet. Even during attacks, in the heat of spiritual warfare, we should be free from anxiety because God is in charge! “Who will rise up for me against the evildoers? Who will stand up for me against the workers of iniquity? Unless the Lord had been my help, my soul would soon have settled in silence. If I say, “My foot slips,” Your mercy, O Lord, will hold me up. In the multitude of my anxieties within me, Your comforts delight my soul. (Ps 94:16-19)
What is the cure for anxiety? The only cure is God! It is faith in the Lord Jesus Christ! This is our Lord’s command: “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble” (Mt 6:34).
The unbelievers cannot be free from troubling incapacitating anxiety. Child of God, you should know that God is your provider. He loves you! He cares for you! The unbelievers seek the things of this world (food, clothes, husbands, wives, children, pleasures, titles etc). In this world there is great competition over these things. That is why they are all anxious. But we should seek God and His kingdom. Anxiety will disappear if you truly desire to know God and to worship Him. Wealth does not eliminate anxiety. Seeking and serving money is idolatry and will only increase anxiety. God judges idolatry. Ask the Holy Spirit to expose your idols. What do you love more than God? Is it your beauty? Is it you good looking husband or your well behaved children? Is it your fame or your professional success? Repent! Come back to Jesus! Seek God with your heart! Study His Word which brings you peace and joy. Martha was worried about many things (Lk 10). Mary sat at the feet of Jesus. All that we need is Christ and His Word!
“Cast your burden on the Lord, and He will sustain you; He will never permit the righteous to be moved” (Ps 55:22). This is God’s command for those who carry burdens on their backs, better said on their spirits. A burden is a heavy load of responsibility that you carry on. Some burdens are given by God. These we must carry using the strength God provides. But there are also burdens placed on our spirits by the devil. He takes advantage of our ignorance and adds to the burdens we should carry for God. The devil adds unlawful responsibilities hoping that we are foolish enough to carry them from one point to another. For example: it is the husband’s responsibility to take care of his wife and children. But if the husband falls into adultery and he now also takes care of his girlfriend and her children, that is a burden placed by the devil. This man is commanded to ‘cast that burden on the Lord’. The word ‘cast’ means to throw away as far as you can. You must hate the devil’s burden if not you will not be able to ‘cast it away’. Taking care of the devil’s burdens is a false responsibility that will only make you anxious, weaken your faith and make you backslide. God promises to take care of His children but not when they carry the devil’s load. God promises that He will ‘sustain you’. This word means to feed you and to guide you from glory to glory. But if you carry the devil’s burden, God will withdraw His provision and His guidance. With the devil’s load on your back, you become like a donkey, like a slave to him. Hungry, confused and comfortless you will serve the devil in pain and sorrow. I pray that God opens your eyes to see and that He gives you the strength to deliver yourself from all strange burdens and false responsibilities! In Jesus name, amen! Be filled with the Holy Spirit!
(in the picture you see a poor donkey. His master has placed too much burden on him. The heavy burden has lifted him in the air and he cannot walk again. I pity this animal…don’t be like this donkey!!!)