Trigger Warning – this blog post mentions mental health struggles and suicide.
On March 13th, my place of employment announced a mandatory work from home policy until April 5th. The country and most of the world, is gripped in worry and fear because of the COVID-19 virus or as it is commonly called The Coronavirus.
I won’t lie. This time has been extremely frightening to me. My parents are older and my Nana is in her 90s. This virus could have life threatening effects on their health. As someone who already suffers from anxiety and depression, this time has been marked by me worrying myself into a tizzy and sending anxious texts to my therapist.
On Friday the 13th at 12:15am I text my therapist because 12 cases were confirmed in the case of Michigan; A large jump from 2 at the start of the week ( This was as of Saturday the 14th. As of the 20th, Michigan now has 549 confirmed cases.) To make matters worse I began to Google and frankly, I have spent an unhealthy amount of time researching the virus and how it affects the body.
As I was texting my therapist, I felt the familiar symptoms of an anxiety attack. My heart began to beat faster, the pressure in my chest was almost unbearable and I felt the sting of tears forming behind my eyes. My therapist was fantastic at calming me down but the act that really brought peace to me was when I turned on my worship music and began to dive into the Word.
I listened to ‘Never Alone by Jekalyn Carr.’
Can’t you see the angels
Ascending and descending
Leaving their habitation
Coming to your rescue
Can’t you see the angels
Standing up with you
Creating a shield for you
So the enemy can not touch you
As I listened to this song on repeat and journaled while I searched for verses that reminded me of God’s protection, chills crawled across my body as if someone was standing behind me. I looked at my ceiling and almost expected angels to be above me. I could feel God’s presence in my room.
I have NEVER felt such peace in my struggle as I did in that moment. I knew that God was in control no matter what happened in regards to this virus. I knew that God sent His angels to stand guard over my elderly Nana and my parents. I know that worrying only takes the power from Jesus and puts it in the hands of the one who wants to see this world in confusion and fear.
So how should we combat worrying?
You are alive! This means that God has carried you through 100% of the times you thought you couldn’t go on. When you feel yourself starting to worry, turn to God in thankfulness.
Psalm 77:10-12 (NIV) says ‘Then I thought, “To this I will appeal: the years when the Most High stretched out his right hand. I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will consider all your works and meditate on all your mighty deeds.”
Imagine how your life would shift if you praised and thanked God for what He has carried you through instead of worrying about where you are now? You must find a way to celebrate God’s faithfulness from your past or you won’t be able to trust Him with your future. We trust God with our eternity so we must be able to apply that same trust to our current situation.
Pray About Everything
Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV) says ‘Do not be anxious about anything but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present our requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.’
When we pray about everything, God lets us experience His peace. A peace that guards our hearts and minds. This verse instructs us to take every single concern to God. We can go to Him 24/7 365 (or 366 this year) in prayer and petition and He will respond.
1 Peter 5:7 (NIV) says to ‘Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.’
God knows that we are not strong enough to carry our burdens, worries, anxieties and struggles. That is why His Word instructs us to give them to Him. He is so much bigger than any problem we are experiencing. God is strong enough to carry our fears about COVID-19. God is big enough to burden the anger some are feeling at Him right now. God is strong enough to comfort the thousands who have lost someone. He is bigger than this virus. Through prayer we must let go of what concerns us and give it to The Lord.
I saved my favorite step for last. Not only is worshipping a freeing experience but it is an aggressive way to retaliate against the worry and fear that is plaguing you. Worshipping God through your fear lets the devil know that he doesn’t have any control over you. Worshipping God through your crippling worry shows God that you are putting Him first.
It is not easy to change your ways. For 99% of my life I have tried to handle my worries and my problems on my own. I have pretty much always tried to fix everything without consulting with my Heavenly Father. This resulted in years of an aggressive refusal to acknowledge how poor my mental health was and thoughts of suicide so severe I was admitted to the hospital.
I know that I am not the only person who tries (or tried) to rip the wheel from God’s hands to navigate around what is worrying us. The Coronavirus does worry me but whether that worry is small or large, I am finding myself turning on my worship music and turning that worry into praise for The Most High.
This will not be an overnight process but I promise you that it will be so worth it. You will find yourself really living a life that exhibits 100% trust in God that He will handle all of your needs.
Before you know it, you’ll see a shift in your life where the former crippling worries are now only fuel for the fire you light when you worship God. You will actively put the devil in a powerless position and live the trust that God has spoken over your life.
If you or someone you know is struggling with suicide, please reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. You can also chat them if you’d like. Please know that I have been where you are. I have lost a loved one to suicide and stared the demon in the face.
You are loved. You are strong. You will win this fight. You WILL get better. Life WILL get better.