You know what the problem is with anxiety?
We get too far ahead of ourselves.
We convince ourselves to fear things that either haven’t happened or don’t actually exist. After all, FEAR is False Evidence Appearing Real. Sometimes it’s so bad, we won’t allow ourselves to get too happy, enjoy ourselves too much or experience the fullness of a great relationship. We self-sabotage our own joy all out of the fear of disappointment.
Fear that it’s only so long before something goes wrong. We’d rather be prepared than endangered, but these walls soon become a self-imposed prison.
Have you ever experienced this?
I know I have.
Brené Brown, in her book Daring Greatly, calls this the shield of “Foreboding Joy”.
Brown mentions, the whole idea is that “you sacrifice joy, but you suffer less pain.”
This has become the world that many of us live in.
And let’s be real, it is bondage.
However Christ instructs us in Matthew 6:34 to take one day at a time- to be present.
The truth is that you cannot experience the fullness of joy without allowing yourself to be vulnerable to the present. It was when I realized how hard it was for me to be fully present that I began to understand the depth of my anxiety. By placing my mind in the future I somehow thought I could control it or stop things before they happened even though they never existed.
And most of the things we fear, never even happen. It’s all a trap to keep us from living the abundant life we’ve been called to in Christ. Remember God’s sovereignty? He has already seen your future. He has every single day of your life laid out before Him (Psalm 139:16). So we don’t have to worry about the future when we know He is already there.
Today my challenge for you is to let go of Foreboding Joy and be present.
When you feel tempted to overthink a situation:
1. Set aside another time to think about it.
Designate a time when you have more peace and better timing to think it through.
You’ll feel better because you can redirect your focus to what’s in front of you without the lingering feeling that things have gone unresolved.
2. Slow Down.
Practice the pause. Recognize that anxious ruminating bears no fruit. Visualize yourself pushing everything out of your brain and to the side. Readjust your concentration and slow down.
Today’s Prayer: Lord, right now I am grateful for the 24 hours you have placed in front of me and I will trust you with the days to come.