Recipe for a worry-free heart: Part 2
Who are we asking to release us from our anxiety?
Our Good Good Father.
Harrison can tell you how passionate I am about promoting God’s compassion and desire to please us as his beloved children. He genuinely wants us to not only seek him out and to call upon him, but to lay our burdens with him. He is our Father telling us, imploring us- “Come! Find rest in me. Tell me what your worries are so I can take them from you.”
We have a perfect Father who knows our afflictions. Knows our heart and what we will say before we say it, but he wants to talk to us, to have a relationship with us. The same kind of relationship He had with Moses, where His presence would come down into the tent to speak with him, and that the Israelites longed for.
We have unhindered access to a God that adores us and wants to release the toxicity of anxiety and worry that removes us from Him.
Short version: Daniel 9:18 “…For we are not presenting our petitions before you based on our righteous acts, but based on your abundant compassion.”
Pretty simple answer right?
But I dare say it’s not talking about when you’re worried if it’s going to rain on your washing while you’re out (this happened to me on Tuesday..) or if you’re worried you forgot to put the garage door down (here’s looking at you, Harrison..)
Think about your genuine fears and worries.
When I was in early pregnancy, I was really struggling with not knowing if my baby was going to be okay and I was only finding reassurance when I got my ultrasound. I was telling a lady I worked with at the time that I was anxious, and she said to me “You need to hand this baby over to Jesus, Jess. You need to visualise yourself handing your baby over into Jesus’ arms, and you need to ask Him to take care of that baby.”
She is someone I really admire, and she will often just speak into my life at work, and when she said this, not even having to think about it, she said it in such a decisive way that just screamed “total trust in Jesus”.
It was something that seemed simple, but it was completely freeing. And with my fears released, I was able to be joyful.
Short-ish version: Ask yourself, what is stealing my joy? What am I letting control my thoughts and actions?
Identify them, write them ALL down, then when your done, ask God to reveal your hidden fears too because although we think we know ourselves, some fears are so deeply rooted or disguised that we can be blindsided by them when we didn’t even know they were there.
“And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
I can’t really think of a better answer than that, I mean who doesn’t want peace guarding their hearts?
One of the definitions of peace I found is “free from anxiety or distress”
What do you understand about “peace”? Think about it.
Being human, we tend to put limits on things or concepts, we keep them finite so we can understand them. We like to keep God and his qualities finite so that he can fit into our mindset of what we know, but in reality God is, as Chris Tomlin says in his song; indescribable, uncontainable.
The peace he brings is no different, put plainly in the verse, His peace “surpasses all understanding”
So, not only are we to receive a gift from an indescribably compassionate God but the peace He brings is going to overwhelm me and exceed all my expectations? I don’t think I need any more convincing! Is there a downside to this? No, actually it’s about to get better!
This peace is a promise of Protection.
This incredible peace has a purpose, not only to satisfy your current anxieties and fears that we confess and relinquish to God, but to “guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus”. Receiving this peace means that our hearts and minds will be safe, with Christ Jesus. We know its important to guard our hearts, as we are told in Proverbs 4:23 “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life”. The heart is the beginning, where our thoughts, desires, and fears come from, so it makes complete sense that both these passages highlight it’s need for protection, and who better to leave our most precious asset with, than Christ himself?
Short version: He wants to give us His peace, and we need it. We need it because the bible insistently tells us we need it. We were not designed to be capable managers of our own lives, we desperately require the peace that only God can give, and with that, guardianship over our hearts.
We live in a world that is full of people imprisoned by their fear and anxiety, and we have a God who adores us, has his arms open, and is just waiting for us to surrender so He can bless us with His peace, and His protection.