This week with Irvine Christian Students, the theme of the message continues to be about a life of forbearance without anxiety. It is easy to lose our focus in our own affairs, especially during these times where things seem so uncertain. Due to the current events, we become easily anxious about many aspects of our lives – our school, jobs, the economy… etc. Being a Public Health major, it is harder for me to distance myself from current events, especially because my classes are infiltrated with the topic of COVID-19. Bombarded with information, we are all struggling to not be so consumed by many unsettling thoughts.
During the Sunday Fellowship, I realized that this anxiety does not only affect us mentally but it also affects us spiritually. Romans 8:6 says,
“For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the spirit is life and peace.”
When our mind is set on outward problems of the world, we are separated from God, being unable to receive the Spirit into our spirit. When my mind is set on the outward problems of the world, I feel separated from God, and unable to contact and receive more of the Spirit into my spirit.
In 2 Corinthians 12:9 Paul says,
“And He has said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness. Most gladly therefore I will rather boast in my weaknesses that the power of Christ might tabernacle over me.”
In order for the Lord’s power to be perfected in us, there is a need for our weaknesses. Often, we find our weaknesses and failures as we go through trials and sufferings; yet these trials are not merely for us to suffer through, but for us to gain Christ. And we need not worry not for His grace is sufficient for all of us! In times of trials and tribulations, the Lord continues to tabernacle over us, overshadowing our weaknesses and giving us His grace and power,which is in Christ as the life-giving Spirit!
What is more encouraging is that Philippians 4:5 tells us,
“Let your forbearance be known to all men. The Lord is near.”
How amazing that the Lord is always ready and available! He is always so close to us to help and supply us with Himself. Hebrews 12:2 tells us the way is to receive is by “Looking away unto Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith.” A line from the a hymn we were singing today sang during our Sunday Fellowship says, “And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, In the light of His glory and grace.” By looking away from all earthly things we are putting our trust and faith into Christ Jesus. When our attention is on Him, our anxiety will cease and instead we will be filled with peace and life!
The times I feel the most anxious, I find that my mind is set on the flesh and earthly matters. It is focused on this pandemic, on my schoolwork, on my future, on my family, and basically everything that is not God Himself. When I am not in my spirit, touching the Spirit of God, there is nothing stopping my mind from avalanching into feelings of worry, doubt, and fear. My mind continues to play up these emotions until I am completely overpowered. Before I truly learned about the word of God, I would just continue to allow myself to wallow in a pit of anxiety. But since I have received Christ and learned of His promises, I realized that I do not need to remain in my emotions. By calling on His name, I can depend on Him to carry a burden,that I in my flesh am too weak to bear alone. I am not ashamed of my weaknesses, because it is through my opening to Christ in my weaknesses, that Christ’s power is perfected.