Anxiety-related issues are the number one mental health problem among women and are second only to alcohol and drug abuse among men. Anxiety takes our breath away, our sleep, our energy, our well being. "Don’t fret", wrote the psalmist, "it only causes harm”. Harm to our neck, jaw, back, bowels & blood pressure. Because of the internet we’ve barely processed 1 crisis and then we hear another.
Are you laughing less? Do you assume bad things will happen? Would you rather stay in bed? Do you magnify the negative and dismiss the positive? In my upcoming yoga class series, Anxious for Nothing, we will physically find calm through yoga while gaining God’s peace reflecting on the promises of Philippians 4:6-7 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
The presence of anxiety is unavoidable, but the prison of anxiety is optional. It’s the life of perpetual anxiety that the apostle Paul wants to address. Here we will learn the tools not to let anything in life leave you perpetually in angst.
Sovereignty is the term the bible uses to describe God’s perfect control and management of the universe. He preserves & governs every element. He is continually involved with all created things, directing them to act in a way that fulfills his divine purpose. This is imperative for the anxious to grasp, because anxiety increases as perceived control diminishes. Proverbs 21:30 “Theres is no wisdom, no insight, no plan that can succeed against the Lord.” Let us stabilize our souls with the sovereignty of God. He reigns supreme over every detail of the universe.
One of the most critical poses in yoga and to help relieve stress is Savasana, your final resting pose. This posture allows your body to smooth out over your mat, releasing any tension, it helps to quiet your mind, relax your breath, and to inhale and exhale softly through the nose. Corpse pose decreases heart rate, blood pressure, muscle tension and anxiety. It increases energy levels, boosts memory and stimulates the ability to concentrate. It gives you a more easy sleep and brings a general sense of well-being. Resting here informs the body of neuromuscular changes and allows our nervous system to rest. This is the time of deep healing, to surrender to God. Ask Him for what you need in your life during this resting pose.
Philippians 4:8 Whatever things are true, are noble, are just, pure, lovely, of good report, if there is any virtue and if there’s anything praiseworthy - meditate on these things.
LET GO & LET GOD.
LAM 3 “The Lord’s loving kindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; Great is your faithfulness. The Lord is my portion, says my soul, therefore I have hope in Him. The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the person who seeks Him…”
Lift up your eyes. Dare to believe that good things will happen. Dare to believe that God is speaking to you when he promised in Romans 8:28 “In everything God works for the good of those who love him”. With God’s help you will learn to face the calamities of life. You’ll learn how to talk yourself off the ledge. Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, you will learn to view bad news through the lens of sovereignty; to discern the lies of the enemy and tell yourself the truth. You will manifest a gentleness that is evident to others. Anxiety comes with life. But it doesn’t have to dominate your life.