How to Deal with Anxiety: EP 20

Anxiety Is Real and Can Be Overwhelming

We all get nervous, worried, stressed, and fearful from time to time. For example, when speaking in public, going through a financial hardship, or when having trouble in a difficult relationship.

Anxiety is a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about a looming event or something with an uncertain outcome. Having some anxiety is normal but for others, it becomes so frequent, and forceful, it takes over their lives and affects their ability to function. In this episode, I talk with Iva, Allison, and Matthew, each of them have had high levels of anxiety.

A Deep Plunge into Anxiety

Iva is dealing with an anxiety issue. He has no idea why he’s anxious. He’s taken a deep plunge into anxiety and feels there is no way out. He’ll be in class and for no apparent reason will start sweating, shaking and can’t breathe. Then has to lay down in the nurse’s office until he feels better. He doesn’t understand where the anxiety is coming from.

Iva is not alone, there are many people who have serious anxiety issues, 18% of all Americans suffer from anxiety. Many have no idea why they have such anxious feelings, which alone could make one feel even more turmoil. They usually don’t have much patience and understandably so. The anxiety can be so intense, they want relief and they want it now.

Any person who is struggling with anxiety, needs encouragement and support from others, who will empathize and pray with them as they face their daily battles. And walk with them through their own personal nightmares.

God Can Give Us a Deep Sense of Peace

God can give us a deep sense of peace as we work through our issues. God says more than just, “Don’t be anxious,” or “Get over it,” but tells us our prayers and petitions are the keys to opening the door of overcoming our anxiety. The apostle Paul wrote, “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.” Philippians 4:6-7

I have high hopes for Iva, in spite of his struggle, he has not given up. His parents love him and support him, even though they don’t know what to do. Knowing they are there for him can be a great help. Truly Iva is tormented. May God show him the way to find the peace that passes all understanding.

Overloaded with Emotional Trauma

Allison has a lot of drama in her life, giving her tons of anxiety. She grew up in a dysfunctional family where her and her father were very close and her mom was jealous of their relationship. Now, her parents are getting divorced and Allison feels it’s her fault.

Allison is way overloaded with emotional trauma. For her to get help, she has to reach out and face the truth. Her anxiety attacks are a secondary issue, as horrendous as they are. They serve as a wake-up call. She must discover the triggers which cause her to spin into these anxiety nightmares.

Allison is coming to realize what some of these triggers are:

  • A broken relationship with her mom
  • A sense of false guilt and shame about her mom
  • Her dysfunction family
  • A boyfriend whose violated her trust
  • Way overloaded with her jobs
  • Her father being gone

She’s carrying too much weight, and she’s crying out for help. There’s only so much medication can do. It can help but it’s not an end-all. She’s going to have to go deeper and deal with her issues, one at a time. As she does that, the load will start to get lighter and she will experience less anxiety.

Suffered from Anxiety Attacks

Matthew has suffered from anxiety attacks and even though at one time he might die. He has no peace about anything. It took away all his energy. Then he discovered where to find strength and rest and he found them in Christ Jesus. He was worried about everything and trying to carry everything on his shoulders. He’s learned to give it all over to God. From time to time, he still gets nervous but it’s been years since his last anxiety attack.

Finding Peace

Matthew has found his personal peace with Jesus Christ. With Christ’s love and power, he’s able to help others deal with their anxieties. He still struggles from time to time but nothing like it once was. Jesus explained what Matthew needed to do. He said, "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11:28-29

Did Today’s Episode Get You Thinking?

God can give us a deep sense of peace as we work through our issues. God says more than just, “Don’t be anxious,” or “Get over it,” He tells us our prayers and petitions are the keys to opening the door of overcoming our anxiety

Resources for Anxiety:

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Dawson McAllister
Dawson McAllister, also known as America's youth pastor, was an author, radio host, speaker, and founder of TheHopeLine. McAllister attended Bethel College in Minnesota for undergraduate work where he graduated in 1968, began graduate studies at Talbot School of Theology in California, and received an honorary doctorate from Biola University.
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