Building Your Trench of Truth
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I struggle with anxiety. I have for years and it comes in phases through different seasons of my life. I attend and work at a pretty big church. I have no anxiety during the week when I am working, I love going to work every day. I love Sundays and seeing the kids and leaders having so much fun worshiping God. What sets my anxiety off is going to a church service.
Our church has two auditoriums, a North and a South. The South is from the original building and is much smaller than the North. I can go to the South and have no issues at all, I love it. But when I go to the North my anxiety kicks in and I want to just leave. And, God is leading me back to the North so now I have some things to work through.
I am a fixer, I don’t want to be stuck in anxiety and fear week after week, I want to fix it and be able to be used by God, if you are in Christ that’s what we are here for. So I am seeing a counselor who is helping me work through this season. I have let God into this and He is leading me through this season, I am doing the work to get past this. And it is work, it’s not easy to rehash things about your past that are causing your anxiety, in that is growth and change. Otherwise, known as FREEDOM!
Building Your Trench of Truth
I am reading a lot and watching sermons on anxiety, (Some of my favorite sermons are below). The thing that I feel God leading me to do the most is to write, which is the thing that I don’t want to do, so there must be growth in it, just like going to the North! I started this blog because God led me to do it, it’s not something that I feel comfortable with doing. Thankfully my counselor has helped me to see why.
I have discovered that I have issues with worrying about people judging me, I guess in some ways I have always known this but haven’t addressed it. I worry about what they will think. Will they read this and think less of me? Will they think I am a bad leader? I can say something to someone in the morning and as I am trying to sleep I rehash my day and think why did I say that, it was stupid. What I think people think about me greatly affects me, but the truth is, what we think people think about us is usually not true. So when I am led to write about my anxiety or anything for that matter, the first thing that I think of is what people will think about me.
I am reading two really great books during this season.
The first book is by Pastor Shawn Johnson, he is the pastor of Red Rocks Church, Attacking Anxiety From Panicked and Depressed to Alive and Free.
The second book I am reading is by Pastor Craig Groeschel, Winning the War In Your Mind. If you have Audible this book is free!
I will refer to Pastor Shawn as PS and Pastor Craig as PC from this point on to spare me the typing which is not a strong suit of mine, haha!
There is so much great information in both books and they have really helped me but I want to share just these tiny nuggets that have kick-started my overcoming journey.
In PS’s book, he says three things are true and they are the thing that everyone who is struggling with anxiety needs to know.
- You are not crazy.
- You are not alone.
- This will end.
These are so true. When anxiety hits the first thing I think of is what is wrong with me and why can’t I stop this. Then the feeling of loneliness sets in because you feel this is only happening to you!
And the big thing that I got out of PC’s book was to create a trench of truth.
If you stop a behavior it will come back unless I
- remove the lie at the root of the behavior and
- replace the neural pathway that leads me to the behavior.
Something that hit me as my counselor and I were talking this week was that when I hear the term a trench of truth the one thing that pops into my mind is Moses and the Red Sea. I think of how God parted the sea so the Israelites could cross through it unharmed. After they crossed it safely God closed the waters and the enemy was defeated. My trench of truth is similar, my truth keeps the enemy away just like that water did for the people crossing the Red Sea.
So what is my trench of truth?
I am not crazy!
I am not alone!
This will end!
I am a child of God who is fully accepted and loved by God. I will not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present my needs to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard my heart and my mind in Christ Jesus.
God fills me with His JOY and PEACE!
I choose to not let Satan win! I choose to let God in and fill my life with His truth, not let Satan feed me his LIES!
Mental health is real folks! There is nothing wrong with getting the help you need from a trained professional. I think that if we were all honest with each other more of us would raise our hands and say that’s ME! PS says in his book that 50% of all Americans struggle with a mental illness (this is from the CDC). That could include anxiety or depression. So everywhere we go we are surrounded by people who share our struggles. Next time you’re in line for a coffee look around, they could be struggling too! (expert from PS book in my words).
I hope that this is helpful to someone. If you feel comfortable comment below and share with us what your Trench of Truth is.
Here are some of my favorite sermons on anxiety, not in any special order.
If you enjoyed this blog post check out my post, Nourishment for Your Soul
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5 thoughts on “Building Your Trench of Truth”
Great posts! This will help so many that are dealing with anxiety during this time.
I think many people struggle with anxiety and don’t even realize it. You have shared some great information that I am sure will help myself and many others on a road to overcome our fears. Voice your struggles and you will find there are many out there in the same boat and we can help each other along the way. Great work mary.
God has been speaking to me lately about those “neural pathways.” I have been calling them “dendrites” (from a teacher training I attended called “Worksheets don’t build dendrites.” I know that I have some bad connections, and I love your analogy about that trench of truth. Thanks so much for being obedient to God’s call!