I’ve suffered from anxiety for as long as I can remember. I have gone to various counselors throughout my years. I also attend church regularly and seek biblical counsel as well. Attending women’s retreats can be fun. Recently, I attended a women’s retreat at our church. When I came home Friday night my husband asked me about what the speaker had talked about and I told him that she discussed having Abundant Joy no matter what your circumstances were. He then asked if she gave any practical application advice. He finds it frustrating when a speaker does a awesome job identifying a problem but never seeks to offer a solution. Anyway, I told him that it was the typical read your bible more, pray more, and seek God more.
As we talked he told me a story about a bible study he was doing. A man was cave diving with a group of friends and when they dove down the man found an air bubble trapped under one to he rocks and when he went in and it was from mid chest up to his head. So a large air bubble. They swam back to the surface and the guy decided to try and go back down without any gear. He figured he could make it to the air bubble take a breath and come back up. Now he didn’t tell anyone what he was doing but grabbed his diving knife and put it on his ankle and left. When he got back to the spot, he couldn’t find the air bubble but finally he spotted it and saw the air bubble now was only the size of a baseball. He stuck his nose up there and got about 1/4 of a breath and started back to the surface. On the way up, his scabbard for his diving knife got caught on a buoy and he began to struggle to try and get lose. Now at this point I said and of course when you struggle you run out of air faster. Well the guy was able to calm himself, think, and grab the knife, cut the rope and surface. The point of the story is if you have a noose around your neck the harder you try to break free the tighter it gets.
At that point a lightbulb went off. I kept interpreting the message I heard and other counsel as do more. Read the bible more often, join a small group, do this study, pray more, etc. But I think I was missing the point. The entire point wasn’t to do more but rather to surrender. I keep trying to “fix” this anxiety and make it go away. Can God take it away in an instant? Of course he can! But it’s also possible that I cannot read it away or pray it away so what can I do? I can surrender. I can accept that this is how God made me and GIVE. IT. UP! Now once I do surrender, then I should naturally read the bible more and pray more but see I was putting the cart before the horse. Some people may call it just acceptance of where they are at.
Her point was to make sure we don’t say we will be happy when …. (you fill in the blank) because we all know that comes and goes and it replaced by something else.