“I’m so relieved,” I thought to myself after hearing a friend’s test results. I had been concerned and worried for my friend’s health. I immediately felt lighter. I had been feeling a little under the weather that day, but the good news made me feel significantly better. I had worried myself sick, with nothing to show for it.
A WebMD article talks about how our body responds to emotion. It can increase the heart rate, upset the stomach, and affect blood pressure. The Bible talks about it, too. Proverbs 12:25 NIV says, “Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up.”
What can we do to prevent worry from overshadowing our lives? Pray.
- Pray Scripture over the situation. Because of my preference for the Moms in Prayer style of praying, I love to find a verse that applies to the situation and put the person’s name in it. An example would be if you were praying for a friend who is going through hard times and needs comfort. So I would adapt a verse like Romans 8:28 ESV to pray for my friend. “May (my friend’s name) know that for those who love God all things work together for good for those who are called according to his purpose.”
- Pray to release your problem to God. I ask God to help me trust Him with this prayer request. God is so much bigger than I can imagine or comprehend. He can answer my prayers, and He will, according to His purposes. One thing I do during this process is to picture myself physically handing them over to God. Sometimes it helps my heart understand and I picture it again when I need the reminder.
- Pray when it is brought to your mind again. It is hard to stop worrying over people dear to you. Whether it’s a parent, a child, a spouse, or a close friend, when someone you love is in pain, it is hard not to keep picking up from God what you’ve trusted over to Him. Instead of being diligent in worry, be diligent in prayer.
When we stop the kind of worrying that chews us up inside, it is easier to feel God’s peace that “surpasses all understanding.” (Philippians 4:7) Follow these steps to let God draw you closer to Him and His peace.