Swing Thought #2: Displacing Anxiety

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April 14, 2022

1 Peter 5:7 NIV

7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

CONSIDER THIS

Today we come to Swing Thought #2 of 3. I’m not sure what to call it. I want to say “Don’t be anxious,” but we all know the harder we try to not be anxious the more anxious we often become. If it were that simple, none of us would be anxious. Anxiety is complex.

Let’s talk about what the Bible means when it says “anxiety” in this instance. The word is transliterated “merimna” and sounds like it spells. It carries a meaning of dividing and fracturing a person’s being into parts. Anxiety, in a very literal sense, pulls us apart. It dis-integrates our very sense of self by attacking our core sense of security.

So how do we deal with anxiety? 

7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Is it as simple as telling God what we are anxious about? It sounds good, but all too often when we are anxious we tend to worry our prayers rather than casting our anxiety on God. Anxiety must actually be displaced within us. The little word, “because,” tells us how this displacement works. It brings us to the four most important words in today’s text:

He cares for you

Did you hear that?

He cares for you. 

I want to turn this in a very personal direction now. Repeat after me:

He cares for me. 

Again.

He cares for me.

Again.

He cares for me.

Again.

He cares for me.

O.K., this is a declaration of faith. Let’s take it a step further and make it an act of prayer. Repeat after me, to God.

Father, You care for me.

Again.

Jesus, You care for me.

Again.

Holy Spirit, You care for me.

The more I abide with his care-filled presence within me, the more I find his peace and security solidifying within me. Instead of worry and anxious thoughts pulling me apart at the seams, I find myself being brought together at the core of my being. This is not hard, but it does require work. It is the work of abiding. It is not just believing the concept, it is entering into the truth. 

Wake up sleeper and rise from the dead. . . 

Your turn: 

THE PRAYER

Jesus, you are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God. You taught us not to worry or be anxious. You pointed us to the birds of the air and the flowers of the field and lifted our eyes to the One who cares for us, your and our Abba Father. Holy Spirit, we hear these things and we kind of believe them. We need you to interpret them and even infuse this into our inmost being. Father, you care for me. Jesus, you care for me. Holy Spirit, you care for me. Praying in Jesus’ name, Amen. 

THE QUESTION

Are you grasping this revelation of the way God works by displacement? It keeps showing up. It flips the script doesn’t it? 

P.S. UKRAINE CAMPAIGN UPDATE. 

Our team met today with Ivan Rusyn, the head of the Ukrainian Evangelical Theological Seminary. It was both heartbreaking, deeply encouraging and faith building. Thanks to the faith and generosity of so many of you, we have now given $66,000 and counting to their relief efforts on the ground. We see a friendship building here for the long haul. History shows us from the ashes of war come great awakenings. We are working to put together a Zoom gathering with Ivan and whoever would like to join. Details forthcoming. And we are leaving the giving window open here. 100% of funds go to our friends on the ground there. 

Also, if you are on Instagram, please join Lo Alaman and me for a Maundy Thursday gathering today at 5:30 (central) @newroomconf or @lothepoet. 

For the Awakening,
J.D. Walt
Sower-in-Chief
seedbed.com
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Farmer. Poet. Theologian. Jurist. Publisher. Seedbed's Sower-in-Chief.

2 COMMENTS

  1. JD, you seem to be saying that by being filled by God’s grace and peace via the Holy Spirit through prayer, that fear, doubt, and anxiety are driven out. I would agree. I believe that Paul’s words to the church at Philippi (4:6-7) reveal this same principle.

  2. Good Word, JD!
    Anxiety (worry) is an attribute of our sinful nature from the spirit of fear (2 Timothy 1:7). God didn’t give us that spirit, so where did it come from? Fear is a weapon of the evil one.
    Anxiety’s purpose is to steal, kill, and destroy any joy, security, or identities that are not rooted in Christ. It propels our minds to think of the worst possible scenario, which can move into depression or despair, where hope becomes hopelessness.
    Two years ago, my wife had a stroke. As the doctor explained her condition, the right carotid artery to the brain was 100% blocked and too close to the brain to operate. The left carotid artery was 35% blocked, and three areas on the left sides of her brain were affected. As I heard this diagnosis, fear attacked me, panic ensued, and I became lightheaded, feeling like I was about to pass out.
    I closed my eyes and calmed my mind, then recited the Lord’s Word from Philippians 4: 4-8 to the best of my memory. I didn’t recite it verbatim, but God knows my heart.
    “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!
    Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
    Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
    Verse 8- “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.”
    Jesus said, “It is finished,” Then His Spirit left the body.
    Now it is our turn. God’s word is His truth and promises. When we walk with Him, we have our part. We must rejoice in theLord, be anxious for nothing though prayer, application, and thanksgiving then request, and we will experience the peace of God. I don’t understand it, but I experienced His peace that day as He said I would by applying His word to my life.
    That our part, applying His Word through Christ, to experience His promises. They never go void.
    “Cast all your anxiety…” Our part is to cast. Not 10%, 50%, or 90%, but all.
    Christ does the rest.
    PS
    My wife is doing well. She has trouble remembering and speaking, but as she says, God used the stroke as means so she’d quit drinking alcohol and smoking. At times, God will use tragedy to get our attention.
    Read the book of Job.

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