Happy Monday, readers!
Today, I’m excited to bring you the first installment of a new monthly feature, Cultivating Community. I love sharing with y’all the words God puts on my heart, but I also want this blog to have the feel of a virtual community.
There are so many great writers with words God has laid on their hearts, and it makes me happy to share their words with you too. I believe we all benefit by sharing our stories and hearing the stories of others–so that’s a little of the heart and purpose behind Cultivating Community.
To get us started, I am happy to introduce Chelsey Coffey, one of my COMPEL “sisters.” She graciously agreed to contribute an article centered on this month’s theme, and I’m happy to share her thoughts with you today.
As we near the end of this month, I hope her words will encourage you as you seek to be still in the midst of all the things our enemy throws at us. Read and be blessed!
Being Still in the Midst of My Anxiety
First of all, I want to say THANK YOU to Meredith for this opportunity to be featured on her blog. It is such a blessing to be asked to Guest Post. I wrote this piece to go along with the Oceans Deep theme of the month: Be Still.
I was diagnosed with anxiety at the age of fifteen. When I turned eighteen, it got to the point where I was on and off different medications and was experiencing panic attacks on a regular basis. It was a constant, awful feeling of not knowing when it was going to hit next, feeling like I couldn’t breathe, and having no control.
When I was twenty-three, I gave my life to Christ. My anxiety did not magically disappear – I know God’s not a genie with a magic wand. But as I grew in my relationship with Him, He began to change my heart.
I realized He didn’t take away my anxiety because He wanted me to learn to rely completely on Him.
When I was in tears and sick to my stomach over the chaos that was my job, being a single parent, and my financial burdens – one day He said to me “Be Still.” Even in the midst of all this? Even in the middle of the craziness I have to face today? “Be still,” He said.
If you have ever suffered from anxiety or have been anxious, you know how it can consume you. You know how it gets to the point where you are out of control and you can’t “calm down” (no matter how many times someone tells you to).
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you (1 Peter 5:7 NIV).
Is it possible to be still in the midst of my panic and cast all my anxiety on God?
I found it was possible with time and discipline. God loves me and wants more for my life than to be living in a constant, anxious state. I found that my God is bigger than my anxiety. I found that if I am completely still in His presence and rely completely on Him – it will go away.
God hasn’t taken away all of my anxiety. There are days where I am completely overwhelmed, and the anxiety takes control of me again. But when I remember His request for me to be still in His presence, I stop, and I wait. I wait for His loving arms to wrap around me in comfort. And although the problem that caused me anxiety hasn’t gone away, I know I can rest in His arms.
Hi I’m Chelsey! I am a Christ-Follower, wife, mother and writer. My husband and I are currently in the beginning stages of planting a church. In my spare time, I love to read. You can connect with me at my blog www.chelseycoffey.com, on my Facebook page www.facebook.com/chelcoffeypage, or via Twitter at www.twitter.com. I pray that God blesses you today!