I have an irrational fear that one day my car will flip over a bridge I seldom take home from work. I fear falling in the water below and leaning on superwoman tricks as my only way out. So, I avoid that highway – even though some days it gives me a quicker commute.
The day this negative thought crept into my mind, I accepted it as my destiny. I continued to nourish this thought each day it went unaddressed, and its roots grew deeper. My faith took a backseat, and I explained it away as God warning me never to go over that bridge. *
We do not have to accept every fear and negative thought that comes as fact. As children of God we have a weapon available to fight these thoughts – prayer. Through prayer, thoughts are uprooted and replaced with truth. Truthfully, God doesn’t want us to fear anything, but Him (Proverbs 9:10). We do not have to crumble under the anxieties, fears and thoughts in our minds just because they linger there.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7 NIV)
We can combat every evil idea that tries to deceive us. The more we pray over our anxieties, and seek counseling when necessary, we will power over these thoughts in faith (2 Timothy 1:7).
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” (Ephesians 6:10-18 NIV)
*Ask God for clarity when these thoughts creep up – it could be a spiritual warning. But, for me, I felt no peace. So, I knew God wasn’t telling me to avoid that highway every day at all costs. Instead, I pray in faith for anxiety to cease as I cross over the bridge and declare my car will never fall into the water. If ever there is a day I should not go over the bridge, then I know God will make it so I don’t.