When I was little, I used to lay in bed at night and see strange dark figures laying about my room. I remember squinting hard at them--suddenly, eyeballs would pop out! Or weird legs would appear! Or it would move a little more towards me. Sometimes, I'd hide under my covers. Other times, I'd reason with myself because I knew it wasn't really scary, but I just didn't know what it actually was. Eventually, I'd muster enough courage to bolt to the light and turn it on.
Of course, what I discovered in the light, was that my shirt was draped over my chair, or there was a mound of clothes on my floor, or something 100% harmless.
I still remember feeling almost foolish, but mostly relieved, when I discovered that I did not have a strange man lurking about my room and often easily drifted off to sleep once my anxious heart had seen what was actually true.
Maybe that happened to you (or still does!) as a child too?
I knew that change would be hard and that uprooting our life wouldn't iron out like a starched shirt. But, I think the onset of all the emotions and backlash from change manifested in a way I wasn't quite ready for: anxiety.
About a month ago, my anxiety was at its all time highest and a pesky daily burden. I felt like I had no defense again it's constant badgering and go around. I wondered if there was a way to shed my anxiousness and all of it's triggers. Of course, the more I thought about it, the more it gnawed on me.
I fed it worries, and it ate my peace.
I tried to create my own system for combatting anxiety. Breathe deeply. Drink tea. Lavendar. Less caffeine. Swing my arms around. All good things, but it wasn't really working.
I was that little girl sitting in her bed knowing what she saw wasn't real, but still felt nervous about running to turn on the light.
Thankfully, through others and His word, God reminded me what my anxiety was: a pile of "what ifs" and amplified fear.
So, I asked Him for help to fight it.
His Word flipped on the light. The daily practice of walking in it helps me see things for what they truly are, not what I conjure up in my mind.
I'm not saying that my anxiety is dissolved. It definitely still pops up and tried to give me a good whack. But, when it does, I look for the light and put on my boxing gloves. Goodness, I even ordered a debit card with a picture of the sun pouring through the clouds to remind myself to walk in the light.
I see the light reflecting off of moving boxes and off the tops of my little ones blonde heads.
I see it in the florescent light in the doctors office and covering the sweetest frame of one of my deepest loves.
I see it gushing in above my little guys' heads and peeking between two huge trees.
The greatest Light is the one who gave it all so that I could be free from the darkness--and that's the best truth, isn't it?
Here are some verses that have been so encouraging to me lately and feeding me truth:
ps. I'm talking about general anxiety and worries here, not an anxiety disorder or extreme anxiety. So, if you need (or have needed) extra invention to treat anxiety, I believe it is so important to get all the help you need :)