Psalm 94:19, “When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul.” When anxiety grips us, will we embrace the peace-calming message of the Christ-Child?
I was fine, even joyful until I entered the dentist office. (Cue the ominous background music. You’ve been there too haven’t you?) I checked in. Waited. The door opened. My name was called. I was led down a hallway to ‘the room’ – sensing impending doom, I entered, noticing dental instruments on a table adjacent to the chair I was asked to sit in. Anyone say danger? They took my blood pressure and said, “Sir, is your blood pressure normally elevated?” “Nope. But now it sure is. I can tell you why.” Soon afterwards the dentist sat next to me; placed in a mouthpiece, turned the tooth drill on and here we go. Can anyone say anxiety? Oh my goodness.
With a show of hands, anyone ever anxious, worried, fretful or fearful? I can see all our hands raised, except for – okay, now it’s everyone. Of course. We all have, let’s be real. Anxiety is real. It’s grip is tight. Caused by a person, place, thing – an encounter triggers a preexisting unsettling life event and anxiety kicks in. Heart pounding. Sweat pouring. Mind pondering. Body pacing. And we begin to spiral downward, especially during the holidays. Am I correct? Oh yeah. Daniel Amen of Amen Clinics cites, “1 in 3 Americans suffers from anxiety and depression.” An article by Psychology Post adds, “Google searches related to anxiety have jumped 52% during the COVID-19 pandemic.” And the Anxiety/Depression Association of America cites, “Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S. affecting 40 million adults every year.” Proverbs 12:25a says, “Anxiety weighs down the heart.” Can I get a resounding amen? Agreed?
But here’s the deal, researcher Dr. Lucas LaFreniere discovered in a survey that, “91.4% of all the things we worry about never actually happen.” (Read that statistic again) Wow! And I hear Jesus’ words in Matthew 6:25 echo in my ears, “Therefore, I tell you, do not worry about your life…” In other words – Jesus says, “I’ve got this! Lean into and on Me. Rest in the assurance of My promises. Release all your worries and cares to Me. Trust Me.” (Read Philippians 4:6-7) But why Jesus? Well, as Isaiah 9:6 prophecies of the Christ-Child: Jesus, “Jesus IS the Wonderful Counselor. Mighty God. Everlasting Father. Prince of Peace – The Prince of Peace.” For me, it’s three words indicative of three actions: release – peace – new lease. As 1 Peter 5:7 says, “Give (cast) all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” And Psalm 55:22 adds, “Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you.” Read those verses again. Wow! What truthful assurance IN our God and Savior Jesus Christ. Again, show of hands-anyone need that? Oh yeah!
“So Almighty God, in Jesus’ name I release this situation causing me anxiety to You right now. I ask for Your peace that will give a new lease on life at this moment.” It’s a powerful prayer tapping into the power of our Prince of Peace – Jesus Christ. I invite you to stop what we are doing right now and do the same. Truly. In fact, constantly say this prayer.
When anxiety grips us, will we embrace the peace-calming message of the Christ-Child? He invites us to do so. He truly does. So, let us all give, cast and release all our cares, worries, anxiousness, fretfulness and fears to the Lord Jesus. As Psalm 37:7 says, “Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret…” (Read Psalm 37) Why? God is; the Christ-Child is our certainty in life’s uncertainty. He’s the known in life’s unknown. He is with us. He is for us. He truly is. Release – Peace – New Lease!
God bless you friends. May you experience the Prince of Peace in a personal way this holiday season. He’s the best gift of all. Truly. See you on-line or on-campus this Sunday at 9 or 10:30 AM
Leaning into and on Him,
P.S. Read Psalm 37:7; 46:10 and Exodus 14:13-15. Be Still. Actively pray the three words: Release – Peace – New Lease. Then quietly listen to the song by Hillsong Worship entitled ‘Be Still’. Release our anxiety then rest in the promise of our Prince of Peace. He’s listening. HE cares. He sustains.