Last week we were talking about keeping track of our thoughts. We need to align our thought lives with the Word of God. Proverbs 23:7 tells us that as we think in our hearts, so are we. Our lives move in the direction of our thoughts. If our thoughts are always anxious, chaotic or confused, we will soon find that our lives will be full of anxiety, chaos and confusion. So we need to fill our minds with the word of God and His way of facing and dealing with things.
This week we are going to be looking at James 4:7 which says, “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” You may be wondering what this has to do with laying hold of the peace of God and letting go of anxiety.
See anxiety does not come from God, it comes from the enemy. Therefore, in order for us to be able to fully defend ourselves against the things the enemy throws at us, we need to make sure we are in alignment with God. We are submitted to God. We are living in obedience to His word and ready to do whatever He requires of us. That has nothing to do with whether we agree or understand what God or His word says. Submission has nothing to do with you agreeing or understanding. It is a heart posture that says, “God, I trust You know more than I do.”
This is important because anxiety and fear have a tendency of having us think of the worst possible outcome there is. Our minds find themselves meditating on the worst-case scenario. But God, the Creator of the universe does not want us worried or afraid (John 14:27). So, we need to take those thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ but we can’t leave our minds empty, we have to fill them with the word of God and do what God’s word says to do. What does God’s word say?
1 Peter 5:7 says, “Pour out all your worries and stress upon him and leave them there, for he always tenderly cares for you.” Psalm 55:22 says, “So here’s what I’ve learned through it all: Leave all your cares and anxieties at the feet of the Lord, and measureless grace will strengthen you. He will watch over his devoted lovers, never letting them slip or be overthrown. He will send all my enemies to the pit of destruction. Murderers, liars, and betrayers will face an untimely death. My life’s hope and trust is in you, and you’ll never fail to rescue me!”
These two scriptures tell us the same thing; we take our anxieties, stress, and worries to God and we leave them with Him. I’ll share a story from the other week. I was worrying about something, and I kept thinking about it and thinking about it. Every time I would think about it, I would get stressed. Then I felt I heard in my spirit something along the lines of, “Whenever you’re ready.” I thought to myself, “Ready for what?” And in my spirit again I just heard, “to pray.”
God had been watching me and waiting for me the whole time. See God can’t do anything about your situation until you pray. You can worry and stress until all your hair falls out but until you pray about it, nothing is going to change.
Our verses are reminders for us to take our worries, anxieties and stresses to God. He can handle it. When we take it to Him in prayer, we leave it with Him. We do not take it back. We let Him deal with it or where action is required from our end, we wait on Him to give us the wisdom on how to deal with the situation. As we do this, we are submitting ourselves to God. We are positioning ourselves to win the battle against the devil because our verse tells us if we submit to God, we will resist the devil and he will flee from us.
If we do what God says, the devil has no choice but to leave us alone when we tell him to go. Take note, he doesn’t just go away because you are submitted to God. You still have to resist him. You take every thought captive to the obedience of Jesus Christ, and you say, “No, I refuse to think like that. I have given my anxieties to God and His word says when I leave my cares and anxieties at His feet, measureless grace will strengthen me. He will watch over me, never letting me slip or be overthrown.” You use the word of God to make that devil flee.
Love and blessings,