In preparation for a class on “Marriage and Family” in January I’m reading several books, one of which is the “Excellent Wife” by Martha Peace. One chapter speaks to a wife’s fight against anxiety or fear and it goes without saying but Martha’s words need not be relegated to women exclusively; men struggle with fear too, in many of the same ways.
In summary, she gives nine solutions to anxiety/fear:
- Do not be a man pleaser – Galatians 2:12
- Remind yourself of God’s Word – Psalm 119:52, 114, 143, 165
- Make wise decisions – Proverbs 3:21-26
- Realize the power of God working in you – 2 TImothy 1:7
- Fear the lord and delight in His commands – Psalm 112:1
- Realize God is ever-present with you – Psalm 23:4
- Trust God to keep His Word – Psalm 56:4
- Seek after the Lord when you are afraid – Psalm 34:4
- Overcome your fear with love – 1 John 4:18
With respect to the previous solutions solutions to fear I chose not to give further explanation because you can read them in Martha Peace’s book pages 221-226. However, I will share one intensely practical discipline Martha shares in her book. In understanding and seeking to apply Philippians 4:6-9, Martha submits the following steps to be done when confronted with anxiety or fear:
- Pray a prayer of supplication and thanksgiving (verses six and seven).
- Replace unbiblical thoughts with biblical thoughts (verse eight).
- Perform practical acts appropriate for the specific situation (verses nine).
Specifically, with regards to “Step 2 – replacing unbiblical thoughts with biblical thoughts” Martha gives a brief definition of verses 8-9:
True thoughts are valid, reliable, and honest. They are the opposite of false. Honorable thoughts are noble and worthy of respect. Right thoughts are upright, just, and comformable to God’s standards. Pure thoughts are morally pure. Lovely thoughts are pleasing, agreeable, or amiable. Good repute thoughts are attractive and ring true to the highest standards (Peace, 225).
Anxiety and fear are real issues that for many can be spiritually, emotionally, and even physically paralyzing and in recent weeks I’ve spent a lot of time discussing this issue with some close friends. It is my intention as I read and research more on this particular issue and come across biblical resources to share with those of you who’ve landed on this blog (whether by accident or purpose). Blessings.