How to Fight Anxiety & Depression

The gut-drop feeling hits when I least expect it. My throat starts to tighten. My head pounds. Anything good about the day is forgotten. Sometimes it’s a big thing that triggers me into a downward spiral. Sometimes it’s a bunch of little things.

What starts your downward spiral?

Some of my triggers for my anxiety and depressed mindsets are loneliness especially on cold windy nights. Or a striving to perfection only to halted in my tracks when I fell on my face during the day. Sometimes it could be hormonal. Sometimes it is the enemy’s lies. 

One of the things that keeps me stuck is ignoring my triggers. I say I’m not slipping towards depression. I am not supposed to still struggle with this…

“Are you sure?” a voice in the back of my mind says.

Of course, I’m not sure. That’s part of what anxiety is. I’m not sure of anything when I let anxiety overtake me. And it’s easy to let anxiety overtake me.

I have conquered anxiety. But I still get anxiety. Does this make sense? Maybe you can relate. 

I experienced this when I flew a while ago. I was nervous for flying which I used to not be. I had steps in place to prepare for my anxious thinking patterns. I pray. And peace that transcends all understanding fills my mind. But I’m still shaky and scared. It doesn’t make sense. I can’t fully explain it that’s why the verse says it “transcends all understanding.” That’s how the peace of God works. It doesn’t make sense.

We don’t have to diminish our struggle to overcome it. In fact, acknowledging it is the first step towards healing. And you don’t have to be medically diagnosed to deal with depression, anxiety, or worry. And we don’t have to let it overtake us. There are ways to fight.

First we can acknowledge that it takes courage.

It takes courage to engage with your family when you’d rather stay shut up in your room.

It takes courage to pray when you want to sit in silence with tears rolling down your face.

It takes courage to open His Word when we know it won’t instantly solve our circumstances.

Are you willing to step out in courage?

Pray this with me, “Lord, I am willing to be made willing.” 

We can come with our unwilling, fearful hearts and He can begin to weave willing into our torn quilts of fear. He can fight for us when we are afraid. 

The Lord provided a way for the Israelites to cross the Red Sea by splitting the sea when they came to an appearance of a dead end in a dire situation. And He can provide a way for you in your situation. Meditate on the fact that you are serve a God who can save in unexpected ways.

“The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.” (Exodus 14:14)  

Some tangible ways to “be silent” and allow the Lord to fight are:

-Decide to fight. Change the track of your mind.

-Pray. Say: God, I can’t do this.

-Worship even when you don’t feel like it.

-Open your bible and read one verse.

-Go for a walk.

-Go to your local coffeeshop.

-Ask one person for prayer.

I’m not saying dealing with depression and anxiety are easy. I’m saying starting small is how to find victory. In Christ, there is always victory. And hope.

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus commands us, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life…” How provocative a statement. That feels impossible if you’re like me and have consistently struggled with anxiety.

What if we read this as a call to freedom? What if Jesus is not laying another command we are somehow to follow? What if He is calling us to something that is only possible through Him? What if feelings of depression, anxiety, and worry are just feelings and we can experience true freedom?

Next steps:

Read Matthew 6:25-34

Check out this article: https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/how-to-fight-for-faith-in-the-dark

God bless // love brits

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