It was snack time. The kids were at the counter eating bananas and chattering on about something. I went to pour them some milk but instead had an anxiety attack. My heart was racing, I was crying and felt like I couldn't breathe. Quickly I turned my back to the kids as to not freak them out any more than I already had and sent Scott a text message. When he called me back, I couldn't even tell him what was bothering me or what sent me into panic land. And when normalcy (whatever that is) returned, I was exhausted, feeling like I'd just run a marathon.
I wish I could tell you that Monday was a one time deal for me. But it isn't. Anxiety stalks me. It's always lurking in the shadows. Sometimes it's nothing more than a fleeting feeling of impending doom. Other times it's tears. And sometimes it's worse.
But it always goes away. God always rescues me from its grip. I always find peace and usually it comes to me through music or sometimes through verses I memorized as a kid.
Tuesday I was in a fog all day. Just feeling tired and run down. As I drove home from homeschool gym, one of my favorite songs came on the radio.
How many times have you heard me cry out "God please take this"?
How many times have you given me strength to Just keep breathing?
Oh, I need you. God, I need you now.The next morning, as I sat at the table, in the quiet before the storm of our daily lives, I wrote in my journal, "Your enemy, anxiety, is like a roaring lion, sneaking around to find someone to attack." I remember reading 1 Peter 5:8 in a high school assembly when I was a junior. I never thought it would come back to me like this.
Tonight, though, was my favorite. Locked in our junk room adjacent to the garage, I was sorting Avon for a big fundraiser I just hosted. I had my MP3 player going when a song from my childhood started playing. My mom bought Amy Grant's "Age to Age" cassette when I was almost six years old. We played it endlessly in her Lincoln and eventually learned every word to every song on that album. So when "Arms of Love" came on tonight, that's exactly what it felt like. It felt like a great big hug from God Almighty. It was like He was saying, "I held you then, I'll hold you now." And all the anxiety just melted as I stood there singing off-key all by myself, surrounded by tubes of lipstick.
These instances are like a balm you rub on a sunburn. They're a salve to my soul.
I don't know why I'm sharing this with you. I just felt you needed to know. Maybe there's something you're struggling with, maybe you battle anxiety or depression or some other variety of the enemy's arsenal. Maybe you just need to be reminded of God's mercy and grace. Or maybe you just need a supernatural hug. Turn up the volume on your speakers and let His arms wrap around you: