“We become troubled because we have not been taking Him into account.”
I awoke with fear and anxiety gripping my heart on our third day of cycling the Canadian Rockies. I attempted to shake my anxious thoughts away by various means. I tried telling myself the truth about the upcoming fifty-plus mile bike ride for the day. I repented of my fear. I gave God thanks. I quoted Scripture. John and I prayed together and took authority over the spirit of fear. God reminded me to be focused on others and to reach out to the rest of the team. I was going to listen to praise music, but I ran out of time. None of those things though wiped away the fear I battled within my heart.
It wasn’t until I sat quietly before the Lord, He revealed the secret to attaining perfect peace. God encouraged me to “name His names” while I cycled. As I whipped down the descent from Lake Moraine Lodge beginning the ride to Bow Creek, I began to declare who God is. “He’s the Prince of Peace, the great I AM. God is all powerful, all wise and is all knowing. God is with me. He’s my provider and sustainer. God is my Rock in whom I take refuge.” My list of God’s character traits went on and on for several minutes.
While God’s attributes left my mouth, anxiety began to leave my heart. God’s peace sat down where anxiety had previously been sitting. As I focused on God, who He is and His attributes, peace overruled my anxiety and took up residence within my heart. Fear fled and my confidence in who God is became my companion.
I learned a valuable lesson that day. When I become fearful, I only need to call out God’s names. As my focus retreats from what I am fearing and my attention centers on God’s character traits, Isaiah 26:3 becomes true. “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in You.”
What are you fearing or dreading right now? What specific anxiety has a tight grip on your heart, controlling your emotions? I encourage you to name God’s names. Begin declaring out loud who God is and watch His peace start to make its home within your heart.
I hope I never forget the lesson God taught me in Alberta, Canada. When anxiety is nipping at the heels of my heart, I’m to take my eyes off of myself and my circumstances and direct my gaze upon God and who He is. I need to reflect upon what He’s done in my past and what He is able to do today. That is His secret to perfect peace. My prayer for each of you is that “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4;7)
“Peace rules the day when Christ rules the mind.”
1. What specific anxiety are you struggling with today?
2. Declare aloud who God is.