Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Are You Organizing Around Your Anxieties?

Job One: do not organize yourself around your anxieties.

It is a deathly habit that will chain you to futility, limitation, doubts and depletion. Like a black hole in outer space, anxiety will pull you into its bottomless gravity until you altogether disappear. It may be tempting to think of avoiding your fears as real work, but don't take that bait. Remember that churning with anxiety - anxiously mulling things over in your mind - does not actually improve anything. It is not progress. It is not problem-solving. For all the time and energy you give to it, it gives you nothing you can use in return.

You have another choice: you can organize yourself around the Almighty God.

Rest assured that the gravitational pull of grace is more powerful than the gravitational pull of anxiety. And from where does this grace gravity emanate? From God Himself.

"Draw near to God and He will draw near to you". In that biblical call we find an alternative to living in reactive response to our anxieties, fears, and imaginations of catastrophe. God's call is for us to organize ourselves around Him. Doing so is the primal, foundational act of faith.

Once settled into that all-important divine alignment, we still will have our challenges to face, decisions to make, and threats to manage. When anxiety was at the center, we found ourselves drifting either into total paralysis or staccato bursts of emotional thrashing. With Christ at the center we can see clearly, think clearly, assess resources and options clearly. "In this world you will have tribulation," Jesus said, "but be of good cheer: I have overcome the world."

Next time, Part Two of this discussion...

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