Years ago, I wrote the book Finding Calm in Life’s Chaos. That book is now out of print, but we are still living in chaotic days – days of uncertainty and growing unrest. During days of uncertainty it’s easy for our minds to go ballistic – entertaining all the “What If’s?” Just this past week, as the CDC announced recommendations for school opening, there was a flurry of social media posts. Many of these posts were written from a place of panic and even anger. I get it. Days are uncertain. But here’s the thing: God has given you the capacity to order your thinking. When you bring your thoughts into alignment with God’s thoughts, there is calm.
The prophet Isaiah wrote of God’s creation, “He did not form it to be empty but formed it to be inhabited” (Isaiah 45:17). The Hebrew word that’s used for the word “empty” is tohu (Strong’s #8414) and means “chaotic mess.” Ah, I love that! Sometimes our thinking is a chaotic mess! When we allow worry to run rampant and unrestrained, we are setting ourselves up for confusion. God is not a God of confusion but one of order and peace (I Corinthians 14:33). We were designed to house the presence of the living God – the Holy Spirit. As His dwelling place, we need to get our house in order.
With COVID-19 and changing restrictions coming from the CDC it’s easy to allow our worrisome thoughts to run rampant. But God has given each of us the capacity to rule over our thoughts and take them captive (2 Corinthians 10:5). I completely understand that some of us have a physical pre-disposition towards anxiety. It’s fine to take a prescription for a diagnosed anxiety disorder if your doctor feels you need that. We are, after all, body, soul, and spirit. But you also need to take charge of your thinking. Rather than allowing worries to spin out of control, stop and ask the Holy Spirit to fill you with thoughts of God’s goodness. Declare scripture over your mind. Remember God’s faithfulness in the past and put your hope in Him to be faithful in the future.
I recently read about Julian (or Juliana) of Norwich (1343 – after 1416) who wrote Revelations of Divine Love. She lived in the English city of Norwich. During her lifetime, the city suffered through the pandemic of the Black Death (1348-1350). Julian became seriously ill and thought she would die. While sick, she had a series of visions about the passion of Christ which became the foundation of her book. But her experience of Christ during her illness led her to say often, “All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.” I love that! The other night as worry began pummeling my own mind, I remembered and spoke that out loud to my own soul. I basically had a “self-management” meeting!
The bottom line is that all will be well because our Savior is sovereignly in control. He has not abandoned His throne. All will be well because He is lovingly ever-present with us. All will be well because He has been faithful in the past. He has a proven track record. All will be well because He promises peace. All will be well because His promises haven’t changed.
Friend, the next time panic threatens your peace, take a few moments to prayerfully finish this sentence:
All will be well because __________________ (List all the traits of God you know to be true).
Trust is a lifetime journey, but as you follow Julian of Norwich’s example of reminding yourself that all will be well because of who Christ is, trust will grow. In the end you will be like those mentioned in Psalm 125:1, “Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion.” You will be unshakeable, no matter what tomorrow holds.
Lord Jesus, I praise You that no matter what the future holds, all will be well, because You are sovereign, good, and holy. You are not a God of confusion, but of order and peace. Help me to bring my thoughts into alignment with Your heart so that I can enjoy the peace that you promise. Thank You that Your presence goes with me into every new day, sheltering my soul and shepherding my heart. I praise You that I can trust You.
I’m praying that you’ll be able to join my dear friend Carol McLeod and I as we present the webinar, What’s Next? Finding Peace in your New Normal
Details are below: Webinar begins at 11:00 am ET, 10:00 am CT, 9:00 am MT, 8:00 am PT. It’s going to be exciting! And Moody will be giving a free sampler of my new book Psalms for the Anxious Heart (scheduled to release in July)to all who attend. There will be another surprise gift from Carol as well! You don’t want to miss this!
Here is the link for registrations: