The Song that Erases Anxiety

    July 26, 2015

    Of all the emotions that can pass through the human brain on a given day, I’m pretty convinced that anxiety is the most difficult to deal with.  Several years ago, I went through some circumstances that caused anxiety to become my constant companion, making me obsessively afraid every day of tornados, food poisoning, and the possibility of getting severely injured in a car accident.  Every day.  I’m not kidding.

    I felt like two people – the anxious me with wild eyes and tangled hair, blabbering about the internal temperature of chicken breast and the sane me with a plastered smile, raising my hands and backing away slowly.

    Every time I saw a cloud that was kind of grey, every time I sat down to eat, every time I got in my car, I believed something bad was going to happen to me.  It was paralyzing at times, and I am so thankful to God that after providing medication and therapy to sustain me, He eventually miraculously healed me {my healing involved praying with and singing over a real leper in a real leper colony…another story for another day}.

    These days, anxiety still occasionally creeps up on me, especially if I am feeling tired, hungry, sick, or stressed.  Those feelings can spiral my imagination into dreadful places, and I have to force myself to remember to breathe.

    Last night was one of those times.

    For today’s Weekend Worship Lyrics, I wanted to share with you the song that consistently can pull me out of my anxious fits and bring me to a place of peace – It Is Well by Bethel Music.  I swear, this song has some kind of Jesus voodoo on it, because when I listen and take deep breaths, it literally feels like a warm, heavy blanket is being wrapped around me.

    {Let me pause to say this – I recognize anxiety is a mental illness and not something that can simply be deleted with a prayer and a song. I don’t mean to claim you should listen to this song and be better.  I pray that God eventually heals us all, and in the mean time I simply hope this song brings you peace in moments of panic.}

    My favorite line in the whole song is the very first one.  “Grander earth has quaked before moved by the sound of His voice.”  It means that whatever the THING is that is causing me fear and panic, there has always been something bigger and worse that the Lord has taken care of.

    My first thought is always our son’s adoption story.  After Rod and I had already given our heart to this precious, blonde little boy, and after we had jumped through nearly every necessary hoop, the judge began having second thoughts, reconsidering our boy’s past and wondering if it would be better for him not to be with us after all.  I was terrified that we would lose our son.  But God saw it through, and now he is ours forever.

    If that miracle doesn’t seem big enough to dissolve the current anxious moment, I remember the time God asked us to trust Him to find us a job.  How for over a year, we tried to step out of the wilderness we occupied, and how God just kept telling us to wait.  The promised land was coming.  And how beautiful that promised land of Kalamazoo turned out to be.

    I sift through my miracle stories, reminding myself of all the times God has shown Himself faithful to me.  How many “grander earths” have been moved by Him.

    If you need the reminder too, feel free to save this little graphic as the wallpaper on your phone or computer, or print it and tape it up somewhere visible.

    And if no stories seem grand enough to erase the anxiety, I always land on this.  Jesus was dead.  And now He is alive.  The grandest earthquake of all.

    This breathtaking photo was taken by my dear friend Brian Wolfe.  Check him out.


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