How I Overcame Fear and WorryFamily . Katie's Ramblings . Mental Health . Sabbath
When I was younger, especially when I was a young mom, I worried a lot. I worried if I was a good wife, I worried if I was a good daughter, I worried if I was a good sister, I worried if I was a good Christian, I worried if I was “good enough.” I also worried about paying bills, and buying food, and staying healthy, and on and on the list of worries went. I would get upset with myself for worrying, because I had been told that it was a sin to worry. So, then I worried that I was sinning. It was a cycle of conscious and unconscious worries that drove my life.
Maybe you suffer from worry, like I did.
As a young child, I had a lot of health issues which also caused some learning delays in my childhood. These physical ailments caused a different kind of anxiety in my body. So, often in our society, we create anxiety and stress, because we do not understand the way our bodies and minds work. We call things anxiety and panic attacks that are just our physical bodies responding to over stimuli, lack of quality sleep, genetic disposition or disease, and other physical factors completely out of our control. By calling these physical responses anxiety or panic attacks, we give the indication that they are influenced by our fears, and worries. But, often, physical ailments and physical responses are just that, they are our bodies response to any stress in our body, stress from before we were born all the way to the current moment in time. These physical responses are NOT indicators of our fear or worries, but they can be triggers to cause us fear and worry.
In my life, I lived a vicious cycle of trying to overcome my fears and worries and becoming physically ill. I believed the fear and anxiety caused the health problems, instead of realizing that my health condition often was a result of factors completely out of my control. I believed that my health would get better when I stopped worrying and believed God had healed me. If I had a good week or month physically, and then had a setback, I believed I had failed God again.
It was a vicious cycle I lived with until I discovered the answer to living without constant fear and worry. The answer was right in front of me the whole time. I had made it too abstract, when the answer was simple and easy to apply.
The answer to living a life without fear and worry is “Sabbath.”
Now before I explain, I want to make something clear. I, like all people, have moments that I feel fear and worry creep in, but the solution to stopping fear in its tracks is a continual reset, and that is what Sabbath is.
Sabbath is the rest, I needed to not get stuck in the cycle of worry and fear. Sabbath stops the cycle.
What is Sabbath?
Sabbath is not a mystery. It is described in the Bible clearly, and it is a simple and practical way of resetting our life every week. It is a day to reset, rest, and remember.
“Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array.
2 By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. 3 Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.”
English Standard Version
9” Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. 11 For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore, the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.”
“Six days you shall labor, but on the seventh day you shall rest; even during the plowing season and harvest you must rest.”
Leviticus 23:3 NIV
“ ‘There are six days when you may work, but the seventh day is a day of sabbath rest, a day of sacred assembly. You are not to do any work; wherever you live, it is a sabbath to the LORD.”
“Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the Lord your God has commanded you. 13 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 14 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your ox, your donkey or any of your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns, so that your male and female servants may rest, as you do. 15 Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore, the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.
For me Sabbath is not just a rule. It isn’t just about not working and going to church. No, Sabbath is about stopping. Stopping my mind and body. Stopping my work. Stopping my anxious thoughts. It is about resting. Resting my body, mind, and spirit. Physical rest and mental rest. It is about remembering. Remembering my Creator and Redeemer. When I remember that God is the one and only Creator of heaven and earth, I remember that He is my provider. He is in control of everything. When I remember He is my Redeemer, I remember that even though I am not good enough, because of Messiah, He says I am good enough. I remember that I can’t earn His favor, but He gives it to me anyway. When I rest and remember on Sabbath, I reset my heart and mind on Truth, and any fear or worry I had during the previous week is washed away.
My secret to living without fear and anxiety is “Sabbath.”
Maybe, you have never thought about Sabbath, or what it means to keep sabbath. I challenge you to read all the passages in the Bible on Sabbath, and prayerfully, ask God to show you how to keep this sacred day each week.
I promise it will change your life.
Written by Katie
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