Welcome to a new four-part holiday blog series, Trading Anxiety for Peace. I’m celebrating one year since my Christmas Peace for Busy Moms online Bible study began, and I have a special 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway for you to enter! First, let’s dig into how to deal with anxious thoughts this time of year.
Dealing with Anxious Thoughts
Do anxious thoughts hold you secretly captive most days? That’s my story, for the vast majority of my life. This Christian life isn’t easy and temptations to worry abound.
In this busy holiday season, my anxious thought temptations don’t stop. They pile up like gifts under the Christmas tree. Or maybe they pile up in not-so-pretty packages like these:
- bills (silly us–we bought both our vehicles in late spring, which means both insurance AND taxes are due during the holidays!?)
- dishes/laundry/messes (I’m sure you get what I mean)
- fatigue (the time change and middle-age insomnia are getting to me)
- too-high expectations (those never go away, I’m afraid)
So there you have it…my list of no-longer secret anxieties. Even though I am always searching for God’s peace, anxiety is hiding right around the corner, waiting for me to let it in.
As a planner, I long to take action on this list. I need to spend a whole afternoon tomorrow working on our taxes, and find time this weekend to tackle the messes. It’s after 10 p.m. and I’m still awake, but sleep will have to wait until this post is published. My expectations–now those need more time to tackle than I have tonight, next week, or maybe until New Year’s Day.
But action isn’t what I need most. I need to transform my thinking.
A New Plan
Recently I was hired to write a series of articles for a Christian meditation app (it has yet to be released, but I’ll let you know when it comes out). Through research and writing, I learned the value of Christian meditation for replacing my secret anxieties with God’s peace.
Does Christian meditation sound a little strange to you? It sounded weird to me at first. Once I learned that it is simply using a chosen scripture as a mental focus point during a quiet moment, the weirdness factor dissipated. Then I realized how much I had already been meditating on God’s Word without even knowing it.
My theme verse for 2017 is this:
You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. Isaiah 26:3 NIV
Early this year, I made a graphic of that verse and made it my desktop lock screen and background. I saw it dozens of times every day. When I logged in, the words whispered truth to me. When I toggled between documents, God’s Word breathed peace on me.
In stressful times this year, I stared at my planner or calendar or current pile and wondered how I would get it all done. But as I reached for chocolate to relieve the stress, that verse would pop into my head, and I repeated the words slowly:
You…will keep… in perfect peace…those whose minds are steadfast…because they trust…in you.
Again and again I heard God asking me, “Sarah, do you really believe this verse is true?”
“Yes, Lord,” I replied with a convicted sigh. “I believe you will keep me in perfect peace, despite my stress, if I keep my mind steadfast based on my trust in you.”
That verse reoriented me so many times, I can’t even count. It literally chased away my anxiety.
In my Library, I have a printable featuring Isaiah 26:3 and other peaceful verses. It’s called the Christmas Peace Bedside Reminder Cards. There are six printable verses to help you meditate on God’s Word in this busy season on this page, along with several other printables to encourage you in this busy season. I hope you’ll find them helpful, friend! Take a peek at them at the bottom of this post.
In all three of my books, I discuss strategies for fighting the sugar battle and dealing with anxiety. I’m happy to offer them in my 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway, along with nine other great books I’ve read this year. I’ve reviewed many of these books on my Book Reviews page. These books are great resources for you, or you can use them as Christmas gifts for family and friends.
Now it’s time for you to register!
Rules: Open to U.S. residents only. No purchase is required for entry. All entries will be verified. Entries that do not meet verification requirements will be disqualified. Twelve winners will be selected based on the top number of entries. Books will be mailed via USPS on or before Nov. 17, 2017.
This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest. You understand that you are providing your information to the owner of this page and not to Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.
Come back every day between now and Nov. 13 for more entries. Answer one of these questions for an entry (make sure to mark the entry form when you comment):
Questions for you:
- What triggers anxious thoughts for you this time of year?
- Did you choose a theme verse for 2017? If so, please share it in the comments.
- How has this post inspired you to try Christian meditation for greater peace?
If you liked this post, I would appreciate your shares on social media!
This post may be linked up at #sundaythoughts, #mommymoments, #modestmommondays, #momentsofhope, #dreamtogether, #glimpsesofhisbeauty, #lmmlinkup, #gritup, #tuestalk, #teaandwordtuesday, #raralinkup, #tellhisstory, #coffeeforyourheart, #breakthrulinkup, #sittingamongfriends, #encouragingwordwednesday, #porchstories, #writerwednesday, #rechargewednesday, #livefreethursday, #heartencouragement, #chasingcommunity, #tuneinthursday, #gracemoments, #saltandlight, #thankfulandgrateful, #quietlythroughthursday, #encouragingheartsandhome, #dancewithjesus, #faithnfriends, #freshmarketfriday, #graceandtruth, and #faithonfire. I love the blogging community and consider these hosts my friends–please visit their sites and encourage them too!
Enter your email address below to instantly receive access to these Christmas Peace printables:
- Study Guide & Christmas Prayer Directory
- Cook Once, Eat Twice Meal Ideas
- Peace Scripture Memory Page
- Bedside Reminder Cards
You’ll also have access to many other resources in my newly updated Library, and you’ll instantly receive the mini book 5 Days to Greater Peace!
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