Breaking Anxiety's Grip By Michelle Bengtson

Day 1 of 7 • This day’s reading


Day One

The God of Hope 

Scripture: Romans 15:13

Deadlines looming, job demands and instability, financial insufficiency, children’s poor decisions, relationship discord, military deployment, the stress of social media distraction and comparisons, the fear of missing out, and more things to do than hours in a day. Sound familiar? This is the breeding ground for worry, anxiety, and fear. 

Sweaty palms, racing pulse, headaches, butterflies in the stomach, difficulty concentrating, feeling overwhelmed—any or all of these symptoms could indicate worry, anxiety, or fear. I’ve experienced them all and more. I’ve felt so wrapped up in knots that I wasn’t sure I could get out of bed in the morning or that I even wanted to. 

Have you ever had any of the following conversations, even if only in your head? “I can’t do ____, because I’m afraid that _____.”

“I won’t do ____, because I’m worried about ____.”

“I’m not sure about ____, because I fear ____ might happen.” 

If you have, then you, too, have come face-to-face with worry, anxiety, or fear. You are not alone. Worry, anxiety, and fear are considered the common cold of mental illness and are a direct path to losing our peace. “This is what the Lord says: ‘Cries of fear are heard—terror, not peace’” (Jeremiah 30:5, NIV). 

I want you to know that it is possible for you, instead, to experience peace from the “God of hope” who Paul describes in Romans 15:13. It is possible to look worry, anxiety, and fear in the eye and laugh. It is possible to be content with where God has you, without needing to know His plan.

When difficult situations come, I desire to turn my back on worry, anxiety, and fear and retain my peace, trusting that God has allowed the difficulties for my good rather than feeling betrayed and abandoned by Him in the storm. I desire these things for you as well. 

Lord, You are not the author of confusion, sadness, or despair. You came so that we might have abundant life. You came to give us peace despite our situations and circumstances. I pray that I would leave my worries, anxieties, and fears with You and receive Your peace in their place. In Jesus’s name, amen.