Overcoming Anxiety with the Word of God

Overcoming anxiety can feel impossible. Anxiety is the mountain you see standing in your way. It’s there—day in and day out—in every situation. Perhaps you have prayed about it, asking God and even yourself, “Is overcoming anxiety actually possible?”

The answer is yes, it is possible. But how?

  • Implement practical steps  
  • See your circumstances through a spiritual lens
  • Know overcoming anxiety is a process

What Is Anxiety?

According to Merriam-Webster, anxiety is defined as…

  • “Afraid or nervous, especially about what may happen; causing or showing fear or nervousness”

The word associated with anxiety is fear. We know the Bible has much to say about fear. 

According to the Bible, fear…  

  • Snares you

“The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe.”—Proverbs 29:25

  • Is from the enemy

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”—2 Timothy 1:7

  • Is overcome with God’s perfect love

“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.”—1 John 4:18

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Think of Anxiety This Way…

Think of anxiety as a battle taking place in the recesses of your mind. These are places where the enemy wants to keep hidden and in the dark. He throws tormenting lies about your past, failures, and insecurities at you, and they land in those hidden places. 

The good news is those hidden places can be filled with good and pure thoughts, so the anxiety has no place to land

Start filling your mind with these truths. 

  • Your spirit is made new in Christ. 
  • His Spirit testifies with yours that you are His. 
  • The Spirit only speaks truth! 

The soul, however, can still struggle to come into alignment with the Spirit—even after knowing good news. The Bible says the fleshly mind, that is the soulish mind, is at enmity against the Spirit of God.

This is why David told his soul to bless the Lord! Sometimes you have to tell your soul to get out of the way and ask the Spirit to take the lead. 

“Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits:

Who forgives all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from destruction, who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, who satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”

Psalm 103:1-5

This wrestling between the soul and the Spirit is the spiritual event that produces fleshly anxiety. 

The enemy uses anxiety as a weapon against you. But you have a heritage from the Lord!

“No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment you shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is from Me,’ says the Lord.”

Isaiah 54:17

The keys to overcoming anxiety are this…

  1. Ask God to shine His light into every hidden place in the mind and expose the enemy’s lies.
  2. Repent, clearing out your thoughts, and casting your cares at the foot of the cross. 
  3. Fill those spaces with truth. 

Overcoming Anxiety with the Word | Philippians 4:6-9

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.”

Philippians 4:6-9
Two young people in mid jump giving each other a high-five.

Let’s apply this verse and start overcoming anxiety with the word of God…

  • Don’t be anxious…

Don’t be anxious or fearful, these words are echoed in a number of other passages in God’s word. “Fear not!” is mentioned 365 times in the Bible. So then, know it is not God’s will for you to be anxious. But simply saying don’t do something doesn’t tell you how to not do it. Keep reading. The passage gives further instruction.  

  • In everything, by prayer and supplication…

When you are anxious, you must pray and ask. The enemy wants to cripple you in prayer so you will give up and stop asking. How often do you get distracted in prayer and think, “What’s the point of even praying? I can’t think clearly!” God wants you to ask Him into this place. 

The Bible gives you the first instruction to overcoming anxiety—pray and supplicate. Supplication simply means to ask earnestly and humbly. God wants you to talk to Him about your thoughts, and ask—invite Him into the process of overcoming anxiety. Tell Him your struggles—even about praying. 

  • With thanksgiving, let your request be known…

This introduces a new action and reiterates the last one—be thankful and ask for what you need. Anxiety wants you to think about all that is wrong and what you don’t have. Thanksgiving invites you to focus on all that is right and what you do have. 

As a child of God, you have an inheritance, you have authority to overcome anxious thoughts (Luke 10:19). 

The Result of The First 3 Steps

The results of the first three steps of overcoming anxiety with the word of God are… 

  • Peace that surpasses all understanding

Receive His peace and thank Him for His healing power. 

  • A guarding of your heart and mind 

When you operate from a place of thanksgiving and prayer—continuously taking your thoughts captive and giving them to God—your heart is guarded. Prayer, supplication, and thanksgiving clear out all the things the enemy wants to keep hidden in the recesses of your mind. 

Now What?

God knows the enemy is prowling around like a lion looking to devour (1 Peter 5:8). This is why God’s word tells you to fill up the recesses of your mind after they’ve been cleared out. 

What do you fill your mind with after overcoming anxiety? 

Whatever is… 

  • True
  • Noble
  • Just 
  • Pure 
  • Lovely
  • Of good report
  • Virtuous
  • Praiseworthy

You are to “meditate” on the things heard, received, and learned. 

In Matthew 12:44-45, Jesus speaks into why it is crucial to fill your mind with these things. If the spirit of anxiety is cleared out, and all seems well, but there is nothing set up to occupy or defend the “house”—the mind—then anxiety only returns and feels worse. 

Jesus invites you to fill up on His word. 

  • “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt; Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it.”—Psalm 81:10

Then the truth you have in your mind will be able to battle, overcoming anxiety and leading you to victory. 

  • Ephesians 6 says to pick up the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 
  • John 14 says the Holy Spirit will remind you of Jesus’ words. 

This is how to overcome anxiety with the word of God: by filling up your mind with truth and battling with the word when it tries to come back. 

In Review

  • Ask God to shine His light on every hidden place in the mind and expose the enemy.
  • Repent, clearing out your thoughts, and casting your cares at the foot of the cross. 
  • Fill those spaces with truth.

Philippians 4 gives you practical steps for overcoming anxiety. But you must see your anxiety through a spiritual lens. The enemy wants to fill your mind with worry, but God says to take your thoughts captive, making them obedient to the truth. Ask Him to fill your mind! 

Tip: As you ask God to expose the lies, write them down and ask Him to give you a truth from His word to battle it. 

Overcoming anxiety is a process, but it is one that creates a testimony that He will use to bring freedom and healing to others. Remember, what the enemy means for evil, God will use for good (Genesis 50:20). 

You are not in this battle alone. Start speaking truth and ask the Spirit to occupy your mind, and as you begin to heal, share your testimony with others.