Scripture is full of stories and messages that provide comfort for Christians during times of stress or anxiety. It’s clear from the Bible that God doesn’t want us to stand paralyzed in fear because of our circumstances. In fact, versions of the phrase “Don’t be afraid” are some of the most uttered words in Scripture, and they are regularly said by angels or messengers from the Lord. “Do not fear” appears more than 57 times in the New American Standard Bible in that exact form, and Bible scholars note 360 different times the message of fear not is included in Scripture regardless of version.
But what happens if you’re still anxious?
The Bible says not to worry, so good Christians should just drop their anxieties and carry on, right? That’s actually a very simplified approach that doesn’t take into account the fact that we live in a flawed world and that we are human. The Bible says for us to do and not do a lot of things, and historically, we all struggle to live up to God’s word. That’s the reason He sent Jesus to die and cover us in grace.
If you’re struggling with anxiety that you can’t control, then you’re human. It doesn’t mean you’re a bad Christian or that you don’t have enough faith. It might be that you need help to learn to deal with your anxiety and any factors that contribute to it. Anxiety is a common symptom or co-occurring issue when you’re facing substance abuse or mental health disorders.
Three verses to think about when you’re anxious
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6
This Scripture from Proverbs is a traditional favorite for Christian signs and art, and it’s often brought out when someone is telling you to trust God with everything. It’s a great verse for times of anxiety, because it doesn’t devalue your worries or fear: it instead speaks to the overriding truth that God is in control and that you can trust Him and should seek His will.
Trusting God doesn’t mean everything will turn out perfect or that you won’t go through struggles. In fact, the writings of the New Testament almost seem to guarantee that you will face some struggles in this life. Trusting God does mean putting your faith in a higher power and leaning on God’s will and wisdom rather than your own. If you find yourself unable to get out of a cycle of anxiety or drug use, then putting God first and following Him rather than your own fears or physical needs can make a difference in your life.
“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 you hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
The “do not be anxious” verse from Philippians is one that has become slightly clichéd because Christians tend to bring it out whenever anyone is facing any type of struggle. While it’s not as easy as tossing your anxiety aside, this verse can be very powerful when you really take it all in. It says: Don’t simply sit there and be anxious or worried, but instead talk to God about what you’re dealing with. Lay it out for him, asking for His help and thanking Him for the good things that you have.
The verse also says that God can provide you with peace that transcends all understanding. It doesn’t mean your troubles will fall away; it means that by seeking God and following His will, you can have peace even amid the struggle.
“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.” Colossians 3:15
Finally, this verse from Colossians reminds us that we are to let Jesus rule in our hearts above all else. We should put Christ before our worries and fears, before our need for physical pleasures or drugs, and before our own plans, which could be what got us in trouble in the first place. Not only should we put Jesus first, but we are called as a body of believers to work together in peace to accomplish these things.
Getting treatment for anxiety and related diagnoses
Looking at these verses about anxiety, it’s easy to see that God never meant for you to deal with such issues on your own. He built you to face both happy times and struggles in fellowship with Christ and with fellow believers.
Stop struggling with your anxiety and contributing factors on your own and reach out for help. You can call us today to speak with caring Christian counselors about your options. Call today (844) 402-3605.