Anxiety. We’ve all been plagued with it.
If you’re a student, the cause of your anxiety may be a difficult teacher or exam. If you’re a parent, it might be a wayward child, the sudden illness of a loved one, or your finances. The primary cause of our distress is due to the uncertainties of life. Will I pass this course? Will God answer my prayer for my child? My finances?
God’s Word instructs us to pray so that this robber of peace does not overtake us. With a determination of our will, we can make a decision to bring every situation to God in prayer. When we do, we are promised peace that surmounts our ability to comprehend and quiets our anxious hearts. God wants us to bring our petitions with thanksgiving, but often we come with a heart weighed down with cares. No thanksgiving. Just cries and petitions.
Thanksgiving is an important aspect of our prayer life. When we approach God thanking Him for past mercies, for mercies new every morning, for His compassion which never fails, for His love which endures forever, and for the sacrifice of Christ His Son, something miraculous happens. Our hearts lighten. Choosing to thank God in spite of our difficulties pleases Him and demonstrates our trust in Him. And that honors God.
I know how it feels when life throws a curve ball. It feels as if the world is falling apart at the seams. But I have also experienced the peace that comes in offering up thanksgiving, along with cries and petitions—as Paul and Silas did when they had been beaten and imprisoned. In spite of their chains, they worshiped God. And in turn, God shook the foundations of the prison and set them free.
God can’t resist answering when we pray these types of prayers. When we offer thanksgiving, our hearts are set free from the chains of anxiety.
When you find yourself giving in to despair, remember you have a God who beckons you to come to Him in prayer. In exchange, He will give you incomprehensible peace.
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Nydia DiCarali resides in New York with her husband of twenty-two years and is the mother of two teenagers. A Christian for more than twenty-four years, Nydia teaches women’s Bible studies and has coordinated retreats and conferences to further encourage others to continue to walk by faith. She believes that when we allow ourselves to be governed by God’s Word we can live as more than conquerors.