Relief in the Midst of Anxious Moments

by: Larry Davies | Jul 12, 2014

Earlier this week, I was hit with a few surprises that frankly left me feeling anxious and concerned about several ministries I work with. For most of the night before an upcoming conference meeting, I found myself praying for wisdom. In the midst of prayer I started searching Scripture and interestingly enough Google. In the midst of alternately reading Scripture and following search suggestions, I came up with several passages of Scripture that eased my anxious Spirit. Then I came across a beautiful devotion and a prayer written by Gail Rodgers based on 1 Peter 4:7-10. This is heavily edited but here is what I learned.

“Be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. Above all, love each other deeply because love covers over a multitude of sins Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling Each one should use whatever gift they have received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in it’s various forms.” 1 Peter 4:7-10

1. Be Clear minded. – Stay focused on God. Look above the circumstances and trust in God’s guidance.

2. Be self-controlled. Pay attention to what is happening within your heart and mind and choose to dwell on the power of the Holy Spirit to help steady you. He will give you the power not to lean on unhealthy solutions in uncertain times.

3. Pray. Acknowledge God in every area of your life. Invite God to come into your work, your relationships, the question marks in your future.

4. Be hospitable. How can we provide hospitality to those around us even when we ourselves are burdened? How can we extend welcome, warmth and generosity in kindness?

5. Use our gifts to serve others. How can we have a servant’s heart in the midst of our struggles?

Precious Lord, You are amazing in the clarity you give us as to how to live. Today, as we face the uncertainty of the moment. Please helps us to stay focused on You today, to choose to rely on the power of Your Spirit within us, to pray about everything and to look beyond ourselves to offer kindness and love to those around us who also are expecting their own uncertain times. Thank you that You give us all we need to walk today right where we are. Thank you that tomorrow You will again provide all we need. May we live in this day and in this moment sheltered in Your love. In the strong name of Jesus we pray with thanksgiving. Amen.

Following the prayer, I passed out the verses below, one to each person and asked them to share something about how that verse had helped to relieve anxious feelings in the past or just to comment about how the Scripture they were given added meaning to their life.

That’s when God went to work on all of us to relieve our anxiety…

Do not be anxious about anything but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7

One person shared that this verse brought them through a particularly difficult time in their life and that it was given to her as a reminder. She was floored that she was randomly given this exact same Scripture.

Casting all your anxieties on God, because God cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7

Another talked about how this particular Scripture brought comfort to them in the midst of a crisis with one of their children. He knew it by heart and nearly cried when he shared the verse with us.

Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? ANd which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to their span of life? And why are you so anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of the these. Matthew 6:25-34

Cast your burden on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved. Psalm 55:22

One Scripture after another followed by story after story of how God relieved anxious moments but more importantly how God worked miracles in the midst of their struggles…

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for evil to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11

And without faith, it is impossible to please God for whoever would draw near to God must believe that God exists and that God rewards those who seek God. Hebrews 11:6

In the midst of our anxiety, God brought comfort, reassurance and hope.

He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade on your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life. Psalm 121:3-8

But the helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. John 14:26

What about you? Are you feeling anxious about something ahead?

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 straight your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

Therefore you also must be ready for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. Matthew 24:44

God taught me a valuable lesson this week. Sometimes in the midst of our anxiety, we need to trust that God will see us through in often surprising ways. I was feeling the pressure to provide relief for our group but instead, God provided comfort and relief in the midst of our anxiety and taught us all a valuable lesson.

Today, I will be praying for you, that in the midst of your anxious moments you discover how God will relieve your fear and provide what we all need most…. grace, peace and a hope for the future that only God can provide. Amen.

Precious Lord, You are amazing in the clarity you give us as to how to live. Today, as we face the uncertainty of the moment. Please helps us to stay focused on You today, to choose to rely on the power of Your Spirit within us, to pray about everything and to look beyond ourselves to offer kindness and love to those around us who also are expecting their own uncertain times. Thank you that You give us all we need to walk today right where we are. Thank you that tomorrow You will again provide all we need. May we live in this day and in this moment sheltered in Your love. In the strong name of Jesus we pray with thanksgiving. Amen.


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