So this may come as a shock to you, but one of the biggest struggles in my life is worry. I’m a worrier.
I worry about what will happen in the present and stress about what will happen in the future.
I’m a planner who prefers everything to be mapped out, so I know exactly what’s going to happen. I’m happiest when things follow my agenda.
The only thing is that life doesn’t often go according to plan.
It seems like I’m constantly battling between trusting God and falling into my old pattern of worry, stress, and fear.
A few weeks ago, I was struggling in this area. It seemed like I woke up that day with my mind determined to spiral down the rabbit hole of worry and fear. The night before was filled with nightmares of memories of days gone by. (Once in a while, I have a little PTSD from the abuse we experienced in the past.) My mind wanted to dwell on these dark things and worry about everything under the sun that could go wrong.
And then the most amazing thing happened….
As I was brushing my teeth (and praying), the Holy Spirit helped me remember a time when our family experienced a true-blue, unexpected, supernatural miracle.
As if someone had been listening in on a conversation that I know only my Mom, Jamie, and I knew we had, three gifts anonymously appeared at our house with a note attached telling us that God was in control of our very out-of-control situation. In one of the hardest, darkest periods of our lives, God stepped in and showed us that He was present, He knew our circumstances, and He had a plan to make a change.
Fifteen years later, I still don’t know who, how, or why this happened. Honestly, I’m content to believe it was an angel. One thing is for sure: that morning, the memory of that miracle helped me push my fear aside and trust God.
It changed the trajectory of my thoughts that day. Instead of focusing on all the potential disasters that could occur, I began remembering other miracles that God did in our lives.
In fact, the story of how we started this ministry is paved with miracles—there are so many stories we could tell!
But these stories are for another day. Today’s point is this: as I remembered all that God did in the past, I stopped worrying about the future.
As it says in Psalms 103:2-5:
Praise the Lord, my soul,
and forget not all his benefits—
who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
So here is one thing that is helping me as I continue my battle to overcome my natural tendency to worry (about everything):
When worry floods your mind, remember the miracles God has done for you in the past.
Has it helped me completely overcome worry?
But it’s one of the ways I fight my battle.
Perhaps, it will help you in your struggle as well.
When worry and fear flood your heart, try focusing on what God has done for you in the past.
Remember His faithfulness, His goodness, His salvation, and the work He has done in your life that has brought you to where you are now.
Focus on thanksgiving.
Give worship a try.
Take time to remember that the God Who has been with you in the past will be with you today and tomorrow.
Just like He had a plan then, He has a plan now.
Even when we are afraid, He is still faithful.
And remember: just because you battle the sin of worry and fear doesn’t mean you need to succumb to it. You don’t have to admit defeat.
You can fight back.
Even if you lose a battle, it doesn’t mean you can’t win the war.
Don’t give up!!!
Keep fighting! Keep trying to overcome.
Don’t lay down and admit defeat—keep fighting for victory.
One way to do that is to remember what God has done in the past—recall His benefits.
Focus on these things and keep fighting to win the battle against worry and fear.
Adessa Holden is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God specializing in Women's Ministry. Together with her brother, Jamie, they manage 4One Ministries and travel the East Coast speaking, holding conferences, and producing Men's and Women's resources that provide practical Biblical teaching for everyday life.
When asked about herself, she'll tell you "I'm a women's minister, a sister, and a daughter. I love to laugh and spend time with people. My favorite things are chocolate, the ocean, sandals and white capris, anything purple, summertime and riding in the car listening to music. It is my absolute honor and privilege to serve Jesus and women through this ministry."