Friday, May 30, 2008

Lifting Anxiety

Anxiety in a man's heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad.

Proverbs 12:25

Most of us have known the weight of anxiety. From owning your own business, to raising children, to making ends meet, to marital issues at some point anxiety meets us head on. And, we don't really need to be told that as Jesus followers anxiety shouldn't be one of our friends. If we have read the Bible even just a little we know that Jesus says, Be anxious for nothing.

Anxiety, no matter the reason destroys our spirit. Even our physical body will eventually begin to exhibit the effects of anxiety through a variety of physical ailments. For something that causes so much destruction it's a wonder that we are willing to entertain it for so long. We know it isn't a good house guest and yet we do so much to make it feel comfortable.

This is where as fellow Jesus followers we need to help each other with a good word. The challenge of this is the necessity to be sensitive to what that good word might actually be. For myself, I too often quickly offer words of Biblical "instruction" about who and what God will do instead of waiting, listening to the words of anxiety and responding with a God given good word that will bring gladness.

Here's a challenge for today. Let's listen and hear what is weighing down the heart of our friend, co-worker, parent, child, neighbor, but, take the next step--wait, listen carefully to the prompting of the Holy Spirit and hear the good word. Today let's make someone glad because of the good word we have given them.
Jesus, thank you for your assurance
that worry is not a responsibility you want for us.
Forgive me for keeping anxiety on as a house guest.
Help me to today, to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit
and speak a word of gladness.

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