A few days ago I woke up anxious and filled with dread. The specific reason wasn’t a big one. I simply needed to do something for which I felt inadequate and overwhelmed. This certainly wasn’t a new place for me, and I’m guessing it’s not foreign to you. And though the reason for the dread wasn’t big in the overall scheme of life, the opportunity it presented was huge. The opportunity alone may be why God allows our many needs to arise. They give us the opportunity to believe and depend on Him. They can become unexpected gifts that draw us closer to Him.
Before going any further, let me share a Biblical perspective on the word believe. You cannot separate believe from trust, faith and depend. They are expressions of the same truth. They define each other. Colossians 2:5 in the Amplified Version (which I love!) expounds on faith in this manner: “The leaning of the entire human personality on Him (God) in absolute trust and confidence in His power, wisdom and goodness.”
So I ask, is it possible for anxiousness to turn into peace and dread to turn into confident expectation if I depend on God, trusting in His power, His wisdom and His goodness? As I set my mind on the following scriptures, I found it is absolutely possible!
Phil. 4:19 states that, “My God will supply all your needs according to His riches in Christ Jesus.”
Ephesians 1:3 says, “God has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual (Holy Spirit given) blessing in the heavenly realm.”
Jesus tells a story to illustrate this Biblical truth in Matt.7:9-11: “Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish will give him snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him?”
These words really speak to me. I love giving good gifts to my children. Why would I doubt the heart of my heavenly Father?
Our definition of “good thing” may differ from God’s definition. I’ve learned that some of His best gifts come in “packages” I initially don’t want. Yet, anything that causes us to earnestly seek Him and fully surrender ourselves to Him is indeed an incredible gift. This includes the anxious and dread-filled feelings. It includes the very difficult circumstances of life.
Second Chronicles 16:9 says, “The eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth, looking to strengthen a heart fully devoted to Him.” What does a “heart fully devoted to Him” look like? Consider these words of Andrew Murray:
“The life that with wholehearted devotion gives up all for God and to God can also claim all from God. Our God longs to prove Himself the faithful God and mighty helper of His people. He only waits for hearts wholly turned from the world to Himself and open to receive His gifts” (from The Ministry of Intercessory Prayer).
This is “the leaning of the entire human personality on Him (God) in absolute trust and confidence in His power, wisdom and goodness” (Col. 2:5b AMP).
It is absolutely possible for anxiousness to turn into peace and dread to turn into confident expectation. It’s possible to have joy in the middle of difficult circumstances. It happens as we draw near to God and depend on Him for our every need! Our circumstances don’t have to change!
For the things you’d rather not do and the circumstances you absolutely wouldn’t have picked, can you view them as an unexpected gift? Will you let them become a gift that causes you to draw near to God in absolute faith, trust, belief and dependance?