A Form of Atheism

Hot coffee, a load of laundry started, and the day begins.

Two hours too late, but that is neither here nor there. Right?

October has left me feeling as though someone blindfolded me, spun me around eleventy-three times, then released me with an enthusiastic push and a loud, “Go!”

Sigh.

Poor Lydia barely got a birthday, and that pirates party just isn’t going to happen. She hasn’t even gotten her requested cheesecake yet. Or her gift from us.

Sigh again. Mom of the year, right here. Good thing my children are generally gracious and forgiving of me, as long as I’m up front with them. Still, I don’t want to take that for granted. Cheesecake must come this weekend. That is all there is to that.

My lists grow ever-longer in my head, and I feel anxiousness welling up inside, but I beat it down mercilessly with a figurative baseball bat, because I have recently learned that anxiety is a form of atheism. No, really. Think about it.

A dear friend put it to me this way: When we worry, we are imagining and creating a future in our minds where there is no God.

We are seeing that we have no control over our circumstances, and believing that because we do not have any control, no one else does either. We are deliberately forgetting that our Abba Father, who loves us dearly, holds all things in his hands. We have put him out of our minds and disbelieved his promise that he would be with us “even to the end of the age.”

We are forgetting that Everything is Sacred, and All Things matter to him. That not even a sparrow falls without his divine notice. That we are worth more than many sparrows.

Dagnabbit.

Another area where I need to learn to surrender and walk in repentance. Walk in the love and the grace and the mercy that holds me. That will not let me fall.

I am precious to him. How can I ever doubt?

And worse – how do I manage to doubt him, and not even realize it until someone else points it out?

Image credit: steadfast-ministries.com

Image credit: steadfast-ministries.com

So, what are we supposed to do when we worry? When that anxiety creeps in whispering, “What if?” as sinister music plays in the background? (I totally hear sinister music when I worry. Tell me I’m not the only one…)

We can’t necessarily keep the feeling of worry, or the anxious thoughts from cropping up in our minds. They do that. It’s human nature. Also–we have an enemy who fights dirty. He hits below the belt, hence the need for figurative baseball bats.

Like any other temptation, it’s what we do with those thoughts and feelings when they come that counts. We must take those thoughts captive to Christ. We fall at the foot of the Cross (yes, again–as many times as it takes), and we lay it before Him Who Died. We get honest with God: “God, I am worried. I doubt. I fear. Help me!”

Like Peter, on the choppy waters, we cry, “LORD, save me!”

And guess what? He does. That nail-scarred hand reaches out, and pull us up. “Oh, you of little faith–why do you doubt?” Soft rebuke from Infinite Love, all wrapped up in the God-Man who knows what temptation is like.

So, whatever that looks like for you, do it. For me, I often journal it all, then show it to Him and just ask him to keep reminding me of his love for me. You know what? It doesn’t always erase the worry (that’s wretchedness for you), but it strengthens the foundation of Peace I stand on. It enables me to tap into the fountain of Joy, and drink my fill.

The unknown is still the unknown, but what I know–or rather, Who I know–becomes more intimately known.

It’s good. It’s a good feeling to wield my weapon of choice, and have it come up bloody. To see the enemy flee limping, with his nose broken, if only temporarily. He will be back, but my bat will be ready, dagnabbit.

Okay. Time to move on. This day may have had a late start, but by gum, it’s still going to be a good one, because it’s a Good God who has orchestrated it for me, from before the beginning of time.

He is sovereign. I am not.

But, I am loved.

PS: I am not addressing the clinical disorder of anxiety. That is an entirely different ball of wax. I am ONLY referring to everyday worries that we are all susceptible to. Just to be clear. Though – even the clinical anxiety will have spiritual elements to it. There is nothing in our lives that does not touch that Realm.

How do you take thoughts captive? How do you handle worry?

Grace & Peace,
Tiffany

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2 thoughts on “A Form of Atheism

  1. That is really well thought out Tiffany! It is good for us to correct things we recognize as wrong, when that recognition comes. I do however think the enemy delights when we over scold ourselves for things too. I think that is one way he can easily, and unknowingly to us, gain a stronghold. God has been speaking to me about spiritual warfare this year. I have been seeing things from a completely different perspective than I ever have. God is so amazing. I love the verse 1 Samuel 16:7, “But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”” I find comfort in that. When Richard was in Canada and I was here, I had negative thoughts bombarding me. I would realize that they were negative and I had to say “Lord, take these thoughts captive and only let what comes from you flow back to me.” I would visualize lifting them off of me or out of my head, lol and handing them to Him. (Later, He showed me that I wasn’t so horrible afterall for some of the thoughts I had wrestled with. God is so loving.) Some situations are harder to do in than others, but it is vital for our mental, physical and spiritual well being. Some of what God has been showing me some of the reality of the players behind the scenes (that most often are unseen) in the spiritual battle that we daily, momentarily have waging around and through us. So taking thoughts captive are very much taking our stand and not allowing the enemy to be triumphant in infiltrating that particular territory. Ephesians 6:12 says, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” I could go on and on about what He is showing me, but ultimately like you said, “He loves us, only He is in control” and we gotta actively and submissively rest in His peace that surpasses all understanding in that. (Which is a daily, moment by moment decision we make. We will have our victories and defeats, but as long as we keep looking to Him and walking in His strength, it gets easier.)

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