Many of us have struggles with anxiety. It’s a weight on you that won’t cease. Being a divorced single parent, anxeity had become part and parcel of my life. Depression which is anxeity cousin, seeps in to the wounds that anxiety has created, and just sits there. I remeber one night driving home, my kids were just in the back seat being children, and I just felt so overwhelmed with the feelings of failure and uncertainy, that I began to struggle to breath. It was as though my lungs were constricting, and my heart was beating too fast. I began to think am I having a heart attack, will my kids watch their mother die. As I began to realize, that I wasn’t dying at the moment, I began thinking will I die in my sleep. As bizzare as these string of thoughts may sound, I had just experienced a panic attack.
Millions of Americans for a myriad reason struggle with chronic stress, that leads to anxeity and depression, which then snowballs into physical illness. Chronic migraines, highblood pressure, heart attacks, cancer digestive problems, and more. Which snowballs futher. Chronic anxeity, impedes on our overall quality of life. Though anxeity and depression is nothing new, one thing is fo sure, the pervasiveness of it is worse. People feel hopeless, alone, empty, but why? We lack relationship/faith in God.
Even myself a Christian, in my head I believed in God, but what about in my heart? Did I genuinely devote myself to him in away, that even when everything around me seemed to be sheer chaos, a steady peace and faith remained? The answer, no.
We live in a very busy world, with lots of expectations, and temptation. A society though it claims to believe in God, still mostly Christian but we don’t live like it. We live as though, pleasure is the ultimate sorce of hapiness. That is why so many people get so volitale when we criticize one of their avenues of pleasure. Whether or not the criticism is valid is irrelevant, it’s like taking a kids lovee. It’s taking away their source of hapiness, what makes life worth living. Whether that pleasure that creates hapiness is material things, money, sex, partying, alcohol, drugs, entertainemt etc. For many Americans, those aformentioned pleasures are simply living the dream. Minus the drugs those things aren’t sinful, some become sinful when we take them out of God’s purpose for them. But, in our society we no longer want God. We want the pleasure sepearated from God, so we can acheive how we want it, when we want it.
But it comes with a price.
It’s like the concept of selling you’re soul to the devil, some day you pay. We have not literally sold our soul, but forsaken genuine relationship with God, for a shell we created ourself that resmebles a genie. So, we can have our sin and a god too. But just like the deaf, dumb and blind gods of the pagans, they are nothing. So we are out in the cold world, feeling alone. But we aren’t alone.
God is there, but do we trust him? Trusting him requires our obedience, but many people don’t want to. Because it requires them forsaking the god’s of this age. So we remain misreable and confused. Many of these things we cling to for a source of hapiness, have terrible consequences when we use them outside of God’s design; and cannot comfort you when tragedy or the difficulties of life strike.
Joy comes from relationship, with the One who created you, knowing you better than you know yourself. God understands better than we ever could what is best for us, and it’s an awesome feeling to know that the One behind it all, “got my back”. Who can beat God??? NO ONE!! So when we listen to the instructions God gives us, not what you think, but what he communicates to us through Scripture, and directly, the anxeity subsides. It must be through concientous prayer, scripture study and obedience, and then the weight of anxiety subsides. It subsides because you know, even in the face of adversity, The Great I AM, has our back, and in the end, has it all figured out.
So don’t worry, though it’s easy to do, remember who is looking out for you! “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
By: Kristina Karamo
We are always told that there is no love, like that between a mother and her child. Even amongst animals, we know the most dangerous animal is a mother with her baby. So it is an instinct to keep our child safe. Keeping our child safe gives us peace of mind and some satisfaction. But sometimes that satisfaction we feel keeping our child safe, turns into a selfish desire, and actually ruins them.
No mother likes to see their child upset, hurt, or angry. But sometimes those feelings are necessary, for their own growth and development. I have seen countless mothers rescue their children, from self induced and derserving consequaneces, boldly proclaiming that they are protecting their child. Protecting them from what? Pain? Displeasure? Failure? But aren’t these part and parcel of the human expereince? Don’t we all experience pain, regret, failure, disaapointment? So are you protecting them because you love them, or you’re own selfish desire, because it upsets you to watch your child in some sort of pain? That isn’t helping them, it’s runings them! Creating a situation where your child will struggle and won’t be able to fuction as an adult.
Sometimes the most loving thing a parent can do, is allow their child to fail, and face the consequences from the decisions they have made, sometimes allow them lose a hard faught battle. We all sometimes show mercy on our children, aren’t we grateful that God shows mercy on us. But many parents aren’t showing mercy ocassionally, they are crippling their child, because it satasifies their emtions to rescue their child from the growing pangs of life.
As parents it is our job, to prepare our children to be independent adults. Not just independent, but adults who are repsonsible and are mentally and emotionally healthy. That requires us to discipline them, hold them accountable when they get in trouble at school, teaching them how to accept losing and not getting their way. We are humans, so we have free will, self concious, unlike animals. So many times parents do everything they can to raise responsbile children, but they still rebel, and make a mess of their lives. But often times we as mothers and fathers too, get in the way of our child’s growth, because our own selfish desire to feel emotional satisfaction from recusing our child from the realities of life, destroying them in the process. It is through our challeges in life, that we grow stronger. If I lift a five pound weight everyday, will I get stronger?
I am mother, and sometimes, watching my munchkins cry hurts. I want to wipe away their tears, and do for them what they should be doing for themselves. However, if I want them to be strong, sucessful, and people who fear God, I sometimes have to sit back and let them feel pain.