Archive for the ‘Panic Disorder Support’ Category

Wow!  As I read this post, by John MacArthur,  I thought about how much our God really does love us.  He has made promises to us and He tells us in the Bible what He expects from us. If only we would listen, our lives would be so much easier.  If He takes care of the birds, we can rest asured the He will take care of us too.  Often I forget that I’m a child of the King and that I don’t have to live like unbelievers. Isn’t that wonderful?


One of the most hopeless aspects of unrepentant sinners’ lives is that they have no answer for anxiety. They’re forced to put their hopes in flimsy, fallible plans and institutions. They aren’t able to rest firmly in the unchanging promises of God—they have to ride out every wave of calamity, every unexpected disaster.

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Our Father Overcomes Our Anxiety, Part 1.

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Are you a worrier?  I was for a long time.  It wasn’t until I became a Christian and got into the Word that I discovered that it was not God’s will that I should worry.  When He tells us something we need to sit up and take notice.  And, Jesus plainly tells us that He will take care of us and that we do not need to be anxious about anything.  It took me some time to break the worry habit, but I did with His help and so can you.  In this article John MacArthur continues to teach us about God’s view of worry.


English: Sherlock Holmes (r) and Dr. John B. W...Sherlock Holmes (r) and Dr. John H. Watson. Illustration by Sidney Paget from the Sherlock Holmes story The Greek Interpreter.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s legendary detective, Sherlock Holmes, is one of the most intriguing creations of literary fiction. He is, quite simply, extraordinary. His famous cohort, Dr. John Watson, is ordinary, at least by comparison. Watson has often been erroneously portrayed as a bumbling fool, but that flies in the face of Doyle’s attempt to make the average reader relate to Watson.

Click on the link below to read the rest of this article by John MacArthur.

Observing God’s Care.

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English: Signs & Symptoms of Anxiety

Here is an article by John MacArthur that I thought might be of interest to you.


Anxiety, fear, worry, and stress are familiar words in our day, and familiar experiences to many. More and more we’re hearing of an extreme form of anxiety referred to as a “panic attack.”

Click on the link below to read the full article by John MacArthur.

Overwhelmed by Anxiety?

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Dear friends, I don’t know where you are on the road of sanctification, but I do know we are all at different places. 

For some of you it would be a huge victory just to leave your bedroom and spend time with your families.  For others it might be to get outside and enjoy the fresh air.  Some of you might need to get your muscle tone in your legs back in shape from laying around so much while you’ve been laid up with worry and anxiety.  Others might be able to leave their homes and shop, but with some difficulty.  Some may be able to work at a job outside of their home and actually do pretty good, but there is still that underlying feeling of ever present danger lurking just under the surface.  Still others may have conquered panic attacks and are now experiencing a more normal life, but every once in awhile a curve is thrown their way and they wind up yielding to the temptation to worry.

There is so much today that we could worry about besides our struggles with panic disorder.  Just look at the world around us, listen to the news, and it can fill us will all kinds of fears and concerns.  So, we not only have to learn how to conquer anxiety to overcome panic attacks but we must also learn how to conquer anxiety in general.

I can remember going to a  church service where the pastor preached on the subject of anxiety.  My ears almost flapped as they tried to take in everything he said so I could learn how to overcome panic attacks.  But, he never went that far. He only talked about anxiety in general as it effected their daily life.  I was disappointed!  I figured that message was not met for me!  The pastor had missed it!

As I look back, I realize that message was  for me!  What I didn’t realize then was if I could learn how to conquer anxiety and fear in normal daily living I could learn to conquer it over panic attacks.  You do it the same way! In fact, if I had learned to conquer daily anxiety before I began having true panic attacks I would never had developed them.  I believe they could have been avoided.  My dad used to say, “Too quick old, too late smart.”

But, you see, in my case I learned how to worry when I was a youngster and thought it was a normal way of life.  Then, when it got out of control in my twenties I had true panic attacks.  That all happened before I became a Christian.  That is important to note. Then, after I  became a Christian no one talked to me about these things.  It took me years to get better because I had to learn on my own through a daily Bible study and then apply the Word to my life by faith.  I finally got there with the Lord’s help.  I finally became free from panic attacks!  I finally got my life back!  I’m forever grateful to God, my precious Heavenly Father who in His infinite mercy looked down upon me with favor.  Thank you God!

Now, remember, believers, we are not of this world. Yes, we live in the world but we don’t belong here.

Php 3:20 NASB For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ;

Therefore, we don’t have to live like the world, and we don’t have to think like the world.  I’d  like to ask you to do this little exercise:  The next time you are around people who aren’t believers, just listen to what they talk about.  Take note of the tone of their conversation.  Do they talk about things they worry about?  Do they worry?  Just listen and see.  I’ll bet most of the conversations are about things they are very concerned about, and how they are going to solve them.  They have to figure it all out.  They do not have God to do it for them.  So, they fuss and fume over everything.  Oh, you might hear some laughter mixed in, but what is really going on? A lot of people seem happy on the outside while they are miserable on the inside. Have you ever known someone like that?   Also, take note of how much they gossip.  What do they talk about?  

Those kinds of people can pull us down.  It is so easy to join in and not realize it.  I have to really watch this myself. 

Thank God we are not in that group of humanity any more.  We can rise above our problems because God is working them all out.  We have to realize who is in charge now.  God is and He will help us through anything that comes our way.  As John MacArthur has said, “Worry assumes that God doesn’t care, doesn’t know, or doesn’t have the resources to help us.”  That is like a slap in the face to God.  It’s as though we don’t trust Him and don’t believe His Word. 

1Pe 5:7 NASB casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.

God really does care for us and will take care of us.  He is God our provider and our counselor.  We don’t have to worry!  Let’s stop living like the world.

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Worry is another word for anxiety.  Do you worry?  We can worry about the past, the present and the future.  What do you worry about?  All of them?  I did at one time, but I’ve come a long way in that department, and pray you will too. 

For a long time I blamed my mother for my worry.  You see she was a great worrier, and I figured it was in my genes.  My mother’s sister was also a great worrier, and you know what, she died an early death because of it.  She literally worried herself to death.  She had every disease you can imagine. (At least she thought she did.)  She went to doctor after doctor and I’m aware of at least a couple of doctors that refused to see her because she was such a worry wort.  She would not take their advice, and took all kinds of medication, which of course, she knew more than the doctors about how much and how to take it.  I feel bad she died relatively young, but she did it to herself.  She was very hard to be around, as she was always crying over her kids problems, and worrying about everything.  She was so very self-centered and was a nervous wreak most of the time. 

My mom worried a lot too, and I think for me it was a learned behavior.  When you live with someone like that for 20 years you just kind of pick it up.  So, I started out that way.  Most likely that is what lead me down the trail to panic attacks.  The actual attacks started in my early 20’s.  But, all my life I remember how nervous I felt all the time and how I would worry over everything. I had to take care of my little sister a lot growing up while my parents worked, and that was a lot of responsibility for a kid to carry. 

It’s sad to think that people have to live that way.  In fact, the older I get the sadder it becomes.  I see people everyday who are ruining their health just because they worry.  It is such a waste of the time that the Lord has given us. 

Here is something I learned that is very important and I hope you will take to heart.   People in the world (unbelievers) have to worry.  Why?  Because they have only themselves to rely on.  Everything is all up to them.  They have to fight their way through life, figure all the angles and make sure things are going their way.  They have to worry about their jobs, food, clothing, health, and everything else.  They are just “out there” on their own.  Have you ever thought of that?  I hadn’t until recently. 

Christians, on the other hand, DON’T HAVE TO WORRY!  We really don’t!  We are living in an entirely different spiritual realm than unbelievers.  We have been adopted into God’s family.  He is our Father!  He is our Provider!He is our Savior! He is our Comforter!  He is our Guide!  He is our Counselor!  He is our Healer!  He is in control over everything in our lives.  We do not have to figure out every detail in life, and fret and worry about them.

So, why then, do we worry?  We shouldn’t.  It is because we were raised in this world and worry has become a habit we have learned along the way.  We need to learn new habits and put off the old habit of worry and anxiety.  We think we have to be in control of everything that effects our lives.  But, is that true?  No!  Not when we are a Christian.  God has bought us with a price and He controls us.  He is our Lord and Master.  We are His children and need to look to Him for every need. 

When we become a Christian we do not realize that God will take care of us in every way.  We still hang on to the worldly way of thinking.  That is our mistake! We need to stop thinking like unbelievers!   They have to worry.  We don’t!  We have been set free from worry when we were saved because Christ died and rose again and in doing so enabled us to become new creations.  We are actually new persons inside.  

2Co 5:17 NASB Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.

But, we still live in the old fleshly body and are constantly bombarded with it’s desires and feelings. Those old feelings lure us into the trap of worry.  We have a certain physical feeling, like rapid heartbeat, and right away our mind takes off on a worry trip.  We start with the “what if” thoughts.  “What if I’m having a heart attack?”  What if I’m going to have a panic attack?”  “What if I pass out?”  And, on and on it goes.  We are worrying and causing ourselves much anxiety.  Finally, if we don’t know how to stop this process we will end up having a full-blown panic attack.

Is there an answer to this?  A war rages as the old flesh fights our new spirit.  But, God says, He is greater. 

1Jn 4:4 NASB You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.

God is more powerful.  He has given believers the Holy Spirit to live in us and gives us power to overcome. 

2Ti 1:14 NASB Guard, through the Holy Spirit who dwells in us, the treasure which has been entrusted to

you.

 

Eph 3:16 NASB that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man,

2Pe 1:3 NASB seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.

God has given us everything we need to live our Christian lives in a God honoring way. 

Gal 5:16 NASB But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.

Rom 8:13 NASB for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

God calls us to stop living according to the world.  We are to die to that when we become Christians.  The Holy Spirit which indwells us gives us the power to put to death the deeds of the flesh.  In other words, He gives us the power to stop worrying.  We can do it!

Below is part of Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians believers:

Eph 1:19-20 NASB and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might (20) which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places,

Just what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe?   Paul is emphasizing that the extraordinary divine force by which Jesus Christ was raised from the dead is the same power at work in and through believers.  Isn’t that wonderful?  We have that same power in us!  We can overcome anything!  Believe it! 

to be continued….

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Isaiah 46: 9-10 (NIV) 
 
Remember the former things, those of long ago;
I am God, and there is no other;
I am God and there is none like me.
I make known the end from the beginning,
from ancient times, what is still to come.
I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.
 
God is talking to Israel here and it is a marvelous picture of who He is and what He is like.  You read this and you have to believe that God is in control.  It doesn’t matter how we feel, He is still in control because He is God. 
 
God is Sovereign!  What does that mean?  It means He is God and He can do whatever pleases Him. He has absolute rule.  Just think about that for awhile.  Nothing in this world can change what He wants to do.  You can’t, and I can’t.  We are truly at His mercy.
 
Now, knowing that, how does it make you feel?  Do you feel out of control?  Do you want to be in control?  We need to take a good look at our own lives and see who is in charge.  If we are in charge, then we have to worry and struggle over every detail of our lives.  We have to make sure we are doing things right.  We have to fight all the fears and anxiety that come our way.  It is all up to us.  What a heavy burden rests on our shoulders.  Can we handle all of that?
 
But, on the other hand, if we realize we don’t have to be in charge, think of the weight that is lifted.  If we truly understand that God is Sovereign and is in charge of every detail of our lives then we can rest in His love and in His arms. 
 
So, where would you rather be?  In charge and under stress all the time? Or are you willing to give up your self to God and let Him take the reins and carry your burdens?  You can, you know.
 
Mat 11:28-30 NASB “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS. “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”  

What a wonderful passage that is.  If we step out of the way, take on the yoke of God’s kingdom, get into the Word and learn from God we WILL find rest for our souls.  He says so!

When farmers put a yoke on a pair of oxen it makes the load lighter for them to haul.  When we put on the yoke of God’s kingdom our burden or load becomes light.  Praise God!

Just a note:  Remember Satan is not sovereign!  God is!  Satan can only do what God permits him to. 

 1Jn 4:4 NASB You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world

 

 

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As I listened to a sermon this past week something stuck in my mind.  The speaker talked about how we think, and said, “Today the focus is on self, which is all about relief, instead of victory in spite of their circumstances.”  He also mentioned the fact that we are today a medicated society.

I’ve pondered that for a few days now.  “relief instead of victory.”  At first, I didn’t get it.  I thought relief would be victory.  Then, I thought deeper, and realized what he said is actually true. 

We are a society who want quick fixes.  We take a pill for just about everything that ails us.  And, we don’t want to wait for anything.  We have fast food, instant coffee, microwaveable meals, instant soup, phones on our ears, fast cars, instant news, the Internet, instant messaging, and fast texting. 

Everything is speeded up in our lives today, and when we have problems we want quick fixes.  We don’t think we should suffer at all.  We look for that magic bullet that will fix everything.  We buy the latest self-help books, videos, tapes, CD’s and DVD’s.  We go to the latest guru or therapist.  We simply want quick relief.  We pop whatever pill is in vogue. Have you noticed all the television ads for prescription drugs lately?  It seems there is a pill for every thing imaginable that could happen to us.  But, you’d better not listen to the disclaimers or you will not take anything. 🙂

We have problems with relationships, and we want things to be instantly fixed.  But, it doesn’t work that way.  So many times people turn to the wrong things for relief. 

I know a girl who lost her fiance in an accident.  This girl is in her 30’s I believe.  She took it very hard, and rightly so.  It is not bad to grieve, but how you handle it is another thing.  Two years have gone by.  

She desperately wanted relief from the pain of losing the person she loved and  was about to spend the rest of her life with. So, she began drinking even more and did not get the relief she desired so began medication for depression.  Alcohol and anti-depressants are a bad and dangerous mix.  She still hasn’t found the relief she wanted. 

What this person needs is victory.  But, how can she find that?  First, she needs to become a Christian.  Then, as she studies and learns from the Bible she will find that God will comfort her and give her a supernatural strength to get through the tough times. 

1Co 10:13 NASB  No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.

This verse is talking about trials and temptations that come into all our lives.  If we are Christians God will be in control of the situation and will not allow it to overwhelm you.  He will provide a way for you to endure.  Isn’t that a wonderful promise?  I loved it when I first found that verse.

Now, that would be victory for this girl!  We are not to eliminate the bad circumstances that come our way in life, but instead learn how to live through them with Christ at our side.  I’m sad to see this poor soul suffer when she could be praising God, and get on with her life.  God has something for her if she would only realize she needs to turn to Him.

Another example of how people want relief instead of victory is of a Christian married couple who have had many problems and they end up with a divorce.  Why does that happen?  They want relief from the misery they live in.   Relief instead of victory is not the answer. 

Victory would be if that couple who are Christians would get into the Word and apply it to their lives.  They could change how they see and treat each other.  They could fall in love all over again.  They could with God’s help have victory if they would only do it God’s way.  The man needed to become the leader in that home and the woman needed to step back and be submissive to her husband instead of trying to run him and bad mouth him all the time.  You see there is a difference between relief and victory.

Eph 5:22-25 NASB  Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord.  (23)  For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body.  (24)  But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.  (25)  Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her,

God knows everything.  Nothing happens to us that He doesn’t allow.  Everything that comes our way is passed through God’s grid.  Nothing happens by chance.   God is Sovereign, and He can allow bad things to come into our lives.  But, there is always a reason.  He is either teaching us or chastising us.  He wants us to grow more in the likeness of Christ as we mature in the faith. 

Rom 8:28-29 NASB  And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.  (29)  For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;

Well, I guess it comes down to this.  We have a choice.  Do we want to live our lives our own way, living by emotions and feelings.? If we do we will find ourselves full of stress and anxiety and looking for relief, not victory. We will turn to medication, or something to numb our brains, perhaps alcohol, or illegal drugs.  We will say, “God, please just take these horrible feelings away.  I’m tired of the suffering.”  Instead we should say, “God, you know how I feel.  Please give me the wisdom to learn how to live in a way that I can handle adversity with you at my side. Help me Lord to see the lessons in this that you want me to learn.  Help me to judge my own heart and expose any unconfessed sin so that I may confess it and repent of it.”   

Or, do we want to live our lives God’s way.  Obeying everything He commands us to do in the Bible.  If we choose God’s way we will have victory in all our trials and tribulations.  God truly is good and I’m so thankful that He has given us the Bible as a standard to live by.  We live in an age where people want to say the Bible is out-dated, and that it is too hard for any of us to really understand.  Yes, we hear that. But, that is not true.  God is not a God of confusion, but of logic, and reason.  He is rational. 

The key to not merely find relief but to gain victory is when we choose God’s way and our focus is turned from ourselves and toward Christ.  Do you see that?

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1Jn 3:5 NASB  You know that He appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin.

So many times I’ve thought about how Christ died on the cross to forgive me of my sins.  What a wonderful thought it is to know that the God of all creation would actually forgive ME an unworthy, selfish, rebellious sinner.  It has always boggled my mind that he would do that for me.

But, the above verse tells us He actually not only came to bear our sins on the cross and forgive us of our sins, but to “take away sins.”  Did you get that?  He came to take them away!  That means we don’t have to sin any more!

Wow! What a revelation that was to me!  When we become a Christian we become a new creation in Christ.  Our old self is recreated.  We are brand new.  Yes, we still have our old bodies, but we are new inside, in our spirit.  

Sometimes, I’ve written a long email to someone.  I’ve spent an hour or more and looked up scripture and pasted in several quotes.  Finally, I’m almost finished and I either hit a wrong key, or my computer acts up, and in a blink of an eye that email that I’d spent so much time on completely disappears.  Something has taken it away, and it can never be found or recovered again.  I simply have to start all over again! 

I think when Christ takes away our sins it is something like that.  He actually takes them away never to come back to us.  Those sins are gone!

In the Old Testament there is a good example of the meaning “take away sins.” 

Lev 16:21 LITV  “then Aaron shall lay his two hands on the head of the living goat, and shall confess over it all the iniquities of the sons of Israel, and all their transgressions, and all their sins, and shall put them on the head of the goat, and shall send it by the hand of a chosen man into the wilderness.”

This sin offering was laid upon the head of the scapegoat.  The goat then was sent away forever with the sins upon him.  Get the picture?  That is what Christ did for us on the cross. He took our sins away forever.

But, you say, “Wait a minute, I still find myself sinning at times.  I thought you said our sins were taken away.”

Those sins were taken away when we became a born-again Christian.  We were sanctified, made righteous and holy in God’s sight.  But, we still have our old flesh that we live in as long as we are in this world, and our righteousness will not be complete until we get to Heaven.  In the meantime, we are striving to become more and more like Christ.  We do not have the disposition to sin anymore.  We really don’t want to sin, but sometimes in a weak moment we do.

Yes, we do fall and sin at times, but it is not our way of life now.  If you are a true Christian you will see that your life has been transformed.  You are not the same person as you were before.  When you do sin, you will feel it in your spirit and not be able to live with it.  You will confess it and repent of it and get right with God.  That is what a true Christian does.

On the other hand if you call yourself a Christian but you still live your life the same way as before you got saved then you need to question if you are truly a Christian.  It is impossible for a true believer to continue to live in sin.  Your conscience won’t let you do that.  You are a NEW creation. 

2Co 5:17 LITV  So that if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new!

Here again the scripture says, those old things have “passed away.”  They are gone, “taken away,” by Christ. 

The bottom line is this:  Once we are a true Christian we do not have to live in sin anymore!  Isn’t that great?  Sin does not have to control us anymore!  Now, we have a choice.  Before it wasn’t up to us as the devil controlled us, but now, God has given us a choice.  We can choose to reject sin in our lives! 

The way we do this is by living close to God.  We obey the scriptures.  We ask God to allow the Holy Spirit to give us the courage, and strength we need to overcome any sin that keeps us from living the way we should.

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