Blessed are those who trust in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord. They shall be like a tree planted by water, sending out its roots by the stream. It shall not fear when heat comes, and its leaves shall stay green; in the year of drought it is not anxious, and it does not cease to bear fruit. Jeremiah 17:7-8 NRSV
Anxiety is one of the major scourges of modern life. All of us have been anxious to a degree- some of us only in certain trying times, and others of us have experienced anxiety on a daily basis, to the point of it becoming a debilitating condition. Everyone has known and will know uncertainty, and everyone will have adversity in life. God knows this, and as in all things, He has made a provision for us to deal with our anxiety.
Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7 (NRSV)
It sounds easy to just let God have our anxiety, but before we can give away our anxiety and fears, we have to trust God.
Trust is easier for some people than for others. People who have been betrayed by others regularly or who have had a number of catastrophic events in life have a lot harder time trusting anyone, including God. Yet the answer to suffering from anxiety remains the same: trust God.
Since we are not able to trust God fully and surrender to Him in our own strength, the Holy Spirit is always readily available to us to provide that strength. When we lack the strength and sentience to find the words for prayer, the Holy Spirit provides those as well.
Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. Romans 8:26 (NRSV)
Trust is not something that is easy to give. The trust in God that is faith is not a blind trust, but a faith that is tested by adversity and struggle and doubt. Doubt is a part of faith, not the opposite of it. Doubt triggers us to ask questions and to seek the truth so that our faith and trust are strengthened, grounded and informed. God longs for us to surrender even our doubts to Him- as well as our anger, our fear, our frustration and our despair. The Creator and the Master of creation can take it, and He invites us to come to Him exactly as we are, with all the baggage that entails.
There are many of us with heavy hearts and serious issues weighing on our hearts and minds today. Yet God is trustworthy. He is our Provision and our Strength, even when it’s hard for us to see it, even when we doubt, and even when we feel as if we are overwhelmed by anxiety.