Christian Counseling and Anxiety: The Possibilities and the Probabilities

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Many people share about how stress and uncertainty affects their daily lives at work, in the community, and at home. Others worry about the possibility of coming down with a disease, losing a job, or being rejected by someone.

As I follow local and world news, I can become alarmed at the number of unwanted and unforeseen events that occur. I hear about wars in the Middle East, the Ebola crisis in West Africa, and droughts and hurricanes on a worldwide scale. Locally, I hear about crime, sickness, unemployment, and financial stress impacting people close to me.

I find that people in the news around the world and those in the Twin Cities have much in common. Everyone worries about handling what has happened in our lives and the anxieties of what could happen in the future.

Christian Counseling and Anxiety: How Anxiety Starts

In the past, when I’ve felt anxious, I have discovered that someone or some event has unsettled my security and serenity. It may be a world event or something closer. Anxiety can then be stirred by many triggers.

But then I begin to worry about what could happen next. I look for how these big, bad things have happened to others, and anxiously believe that these things could happen to me in a worse-case scenario.

Inevitably, the more I worry about my fears and try to be vigilantly on-guard, the more anxious I feel. And, whether accurate or not, anxiety causes me to look for and find evidence of more things to be anxious about.

Help with Anxiety    

One of the things I learned is to weigh the differences between possibilities and probabilities. That is, while it is a possibility that a serious accident could occur today, the probability is low. Or that I could possibility be struck by a meteor, catch a fatal germ, be assaulted by a terrorist, the probability again is low.

It’s important to weigh the possibility against the probabilities. While it is possible that a calamity could happen to yourself or a loved one at home or at work, weigh the likelihood of an irrational or excessive fear with the remote or low probability your fear could happen.

Considering the Absolutes

In the Bible, Jesus warned against the possibilities and probabilities in life. Read about this in chapter 16 of the Gospel of John. Notice how the chapter ends in verse 33: “…in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

What we find in the Bible is this: that our God absolutely loves and cares for us. Even in a big and busy world of possibilities and probabilities – and all of life’s uncertainties and anxiety – we can turn to an absolute God who is available in a tender, protective and guiding way.

While we notice the possibilities and probabilities in life – and experience some of these – we can find from God and with each other a place of reassurance and peace that He cares for us.

I believe in Biblical principles and bringing forth God’s grace in our meetings. Call or email me, Douglas Frey Ph.D. (952-920-2789) for help with your relationships and relationship problems. I am a licensed Christian counselor serving individuals and families in Eden Prairie and nearby Chanhassen, Chaska, Minneapolis, Shakopee, Minnetonka and other suburbs in the Twin Cities area.

 

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