When Anxiety Becomes the Blanket


He says it as an observation and I feel it, this coming undone, seams of my life frayed fragile all before the day’s begun. Little people demanding and ignoring what they’ve been taught over breakfast is the final undoing of this mother and I wear guilt and shame like it’s my identity. Then there’s anxiety the covering of each hour, the lens from which all other thoughts and actions filter. All too familiar it slips by incognito and without a word the enemy becomes a friend inviting the uninvited and grief mixes and anger spills. Ed Welch touches on this in Running Scared: Fear, Worry, and the God of Rest:

“You have been living in a war zone your entire life. At first you noticed every gunshot. After a while the mayhem blends in with the rustle of the trees, the TV, and the children playing in the other room. Fear gradually became the background noise of everyday life.”

So I eat chocolate and play out scenarios in this raw weary head and pour cups warm in hopes of bringing some sense of normal, some sense that says I am in control, that I can have my cake and eat it too. It isn’t until he comes, this strong frame of a husband lavishing love over my stooping heart scooping me in warm arms whispering prayers of blessing and pleas for aid that mercy draws near for “God has had it with the proud but takes delight in just plain people” (1 Peter 5:5); people who have realized that it’s not what they want but what the Father has for them and anything that is given out of love is the best there is to find. Ahhh, this twisted flesh always bites the hook! And in it’s default of self, the ugly lies spiral spirits into a black hole that will forever take one to a place gracelessness.

Confession a balm for the soul a telling of truth, who I am not and who God is. A willingness to pry open my hands and release fear, anxiety…everything I am not in control of, in exchange for grace, mercy, love…all good gifts from the Father.  I am laid open to listen, to obey and in this space for just this moment I am aware that there is no need to find a peddling technique to get what I want from God for I forget that he knows what I need before I even ask it.  So I simply nod, these fists relaxing into open hands and whisper the prayer I’ve been praying since a pig tailed girl:

Our Father in heaven,
Reveal who you are.
Set the world right;
Do what’s best—
    as above, so below.
Keep us alive with three square meals.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
You’re in charge!
You can do anything you want!
You’re ablaze in beauty!
    Yes. Yes. Yes.  ~Matthew 6:9-13 the Message


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