Anxiety is a species of fear. It’s the paralyzing fear of “what if.” It’s the fear that something we dread might possibly come true.
There’s only one solution to anxiety: the assurance everything is going to be okay.
But the world gives us no such assurances. We find ourselves surrounded by myriad real dangers resulting in an endless list of “what if.” It’s no wonder human beings are so afflicted with anxiety. And our anxieties only increase our misery by adding countless imagined dangers to the very real ones in front of us.
Antidote to Anxiety
But God. God the Son stepped into this dangerous, demonic world, where even man’s greatest efforts to ensure safety are ultimately and decidedly defeated by death. And when he did, he made the most audacious claim ever uttered by human lips: for every person who believes in him, everything is going to be ultimately, gloriously, eternally, inexpressibly, wonderfully okay (John 3:16).
In Christ, everything is going to be ultimately, gloriously, eternally, inexpressibly, wonderfully okay. Therefore, Jesus says to you and me, right now, right where we’re at, “Do not be anxious.” He says this knowing our past, our temperament, the seriousness of our current crises and how intense we fear the possible dread may become reality.
“Do not be anxious” can seem like an impossible command. But this should not surprise us. Jesus commands us to believe that “everyone who lives and believes in [him] shall never die” (John 11:26).
Of course, the command to not be anxious is humanly impossible. But as with nearly every other command for the Christian, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God” (Mark 10:27).
The only way we can fulfill this command is “by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving,” making our requests known to God, trusting a specific promise. Then his peace, surpassing all our understanding, will guard our hearts and minds in Christ (Philippians 4:6–7).