Too often, my lungs burn from the pressure of holding my breath.
Will I marry? Am I loved? Will this friendship work out? What if that fear comes true? Have I failed?
Being preoccupied with worry does strange things to me. I don’t even realize I have forgotten to breathe until the pressure builds, then I suddenly feel how tense my heart and mind have become.
Instead of the slow inhale and exhale of joy, I breathe frustrated gasps as I wince under the weight of my fears and anxieties—or restlessly wait for some future, tomorrow’s dream to come true today.
Following this unhealthy pattern means I don’t end up living. Instead, a part of me actually dies. I’m existing in an un-breathing panic, yes, but barely and rather miserably.
Lungs need oxygen to survive, or else the tissue dies. Likewise, our souls need the oxygen of trusting in Jesus if we are to live full, abundant lives.
“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your cares upon Him, for He cares for you.” -1 Pet. 5:6-7, NKJV
Jesus doesn’t intend for us to live stressed and anxious lives. He knows we are pitifully inadequate when it comes to bearing the countless cares and fears that attack us daily.
In my struggles, I’ve discovered three truths for overcoming worry:
Truth #1 – We don’t have to live our tomorrows today.
“…tomorrow will worry about its own things…” -Matt. 6:34
I don’t know about you, but whenever my mind races to the future, my joy runs dry. There is beauty in simply living today—and trusting God with whatever later holds.
Corrie ten Boom wisely asserted that, “Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of it’s strength.”
She’s right. It’s extremely exhausting to shoulder “what ifs” and fears about time that doesn’t even exist yet. So, let’s weigh it out.
We can either live laden with heavy burdens or choose weightlessness as we cast every care on Christ (1 Pet. 5:7). My heart votes for the latter.
Truth #2 – We don’t have to oversee every single detail of our lives.
It’s already planned and it’s beautifully full of hope—twists, turns, and all (Jer. 29:11).
God knows every second, every minute, every hour that makes up our days on this earth.
From the first beating of our heart until the last, there will be seasons of joy and seasons of sorrow. There will be trials and triumphs, fear and peace.
The difference is being able to digest that knowledge and realize that, come what may, everything will be alright! When there is a bend in the road of our lives we didn’t expect, it is not a surprise to God. He is the only one who can see our entire lives, the “end from the beginning” (Is. 46:10).
Because of this truth, we are in essence blind to what the future holds.
Our finite perspectives prove a foggy lens when it comes to viewing His purposes. The key to having peace is trusting His wisdom—His plan—and letting the One who has gone before lead us. His ways are higher than our own (Is. 55:9).
Truth #3 – We can grow, live, and give thanks for today’s blessings
“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” –John 15:5
Many times, I have laughed with amusement when toddlers insist they can do something on their own that I know they can’t. I offer help, but they emphatically refuse, “No, I want to do it!”
After several unsuccessful tries, however, they are quick to give in and accept help.
It’s absurd, yet often, I have that same stubbornly independent attitude with God. Blinded by my pride I say with my actions if not with my lips, “No thank you, I can handle life on my own.”
This ends in frustration, tears, and a pointless waste of energy—and it’s certainly unfruitful.
To be genuinely fruitful, we must be fully reliant on God. In Him, we are nourished, sustained, and equipped with everything we need to thrive, to grow (Acts 17:28a).
Today is all we have on this earth. Let’s exchange our oxygen deprived lungs and weary, weighted souls for the peaceful inhale and exhale of a surrendered trust in Christ.
Instead of gasping under the burden of trying to carry our troubles, we can let everything go—each unanswered question, every fear or anxiety, all our future days—and choose to place them in Christ’s hands.
He will tenderly carry it for us so we are free to breathe one heartbeat, one second at a time.
Moriah Simonowich – Column: Hope For Weary Hearts
Moriah Simonowich a twenty-year-old living in North Carolina who loves porch swings, wide open skies, lattes, lab puppies, and the crispness of October. It’s rare that she misses an opportunity to slip outside and quietly capture sunsets. Writing is like oxygen to her heart. You can connect with Moriah here: www.delightinginhim.com