According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, over 40 million adults struggle with an anxiety disorder. Those who struggle with anxiety know how intense and painful it can be. Our fight or flight response is the body’s healthy form of anxiety which tells us when we are in danger. However, living in a constant state of fight or flight can be incredibly taxing and stressful on the body. Because of this, finding effective ways to reduce our anxiety and stress is an important part to living a healthy life. One way to do this is through meditation.
Personally, I have found that daily meditation on select Bible verses or a story each day has been incredibly helpful in reducing my anxiety and stress! I like to start my daily meditation by inviting God to speak to me while I read the Bible. While reading, I try to reflect on a passage that touches my heart and is relevant to my life situation. For instance, while reading Paul’s letter to the Philippians, I notice chapter 4, verses 6-7:
“6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (NIV)
These verses catch my eyes because I am feeling anxious about an upcoming work deadline, like completing this newsletter :-). Once I have identified the words or phrases that touch my heart, I pray for God to speak to me and listen for God’s voice. I like to write down, in a journal, what I hear God saying to me through the Bible verse(s) and ask for His help to apply it to my life.
There are many other meaningful ways to practice biblical meditation, but my hope is that God’s peace will fill your hearts during this Christmas season.
May you enjoy abundant health,