At my last therapy session, I was explaining that I feel guilty that I am a Christian riddled with anxiety. Typing that out doesn’t even make a lot of sense to me because as a Christian, I know I need to lay down my worries at the cross. I know that anxiety is a form of fear and that fear is not something Christians should have since we believe that God has our story written since before we were born. Since becoming a mother, my feelings of anxiety are overwhelming to the point that I feel like a prisoner to my own thoughts at times.
Mostly, I am a happy, outgoing, loving, person who is the cheerleader for those around me. I love to lift people up and truly feel that God gave me that gift. Over the last few months, I have been crippled at night by nightmares of something happening to my daughter. I can’t fall asleep. My mind races and I end up down a rabbit hole of Googling how mothers have dealt with the loss of a child. I think about all the ways that something terrible could happen to the point that I make myself sick. I sob uncontrollably, drowning in the “What if’s” until the sun comes up again and I must turn back into the happy, smiling leader that my co-workers and friends expect of me.
“How can I feel like I am being called by God to help others when I can’t even help myself?” It’s the question that rolls around in my mind often. My therapist replied, “Megan, just because you are human and have human feelings doesn’t negate that you are wonderful at your job. It doesn’t erase that you have a gift for helping others and it certainly doesn’t make you any less capable.” She then asked me why I feel guilty about having anxiety as a Christian and I replied with something along the lines of “Because I know that He is in control and I know that if you have worries you need to lay them down and let go of your fear.”
She smiled and asked if I was familiar with Martha from the book of Luke who was so worried about her house being clean that she didn’t feel like she had the time to enjoy her visitor whom she had cleaned for… which happened to be Jesus. She asked me if I thought Mary was scared when she found out she was pregnant with the Son of God. And how Peter must have felt when he knew he had betrayed Jesus. And it hit me like a ton of bricks. God knows our hearts. He knows our thoughts and our intentions. He wants us to constantly lean on him like the good Father he is and to cast our fear and worry away, but he also knows that we are fallen. We will fail, and we will come up short and we will have times where our anxiety seems so crippling that praying harder just doesn’t seem to help. So, he sent Jesus.
And at night when I am terrified of the unknown and praying to please protect my daughter, I have found peace knowing that God understands my battle. I have found power in knowing that even though I may not be able to sleep for a night because my anxiety won, that I am still a fierce Christian that has a gift to give others. And ultimately, I know that getting help through therapy is the right choice and I am not afraid to admit it.
If you are feeling lost, hopeless, or alone, I can assure you that you are wrapped in the arms of the most loving Father. If you are letting guilt and fear get the best of you, it is good to get help. It is healthy to seek counsel in others. And just because you are in a spot where you are feeling like anxiety is winning, know that is a season, and seasons come and go. I pray over you now, sister, that you will find some peace. I pray that you find rest and that you come out of this season stronger than ever. You got this, sister.