Does anyone else out there deal with anxiety? Well, me too!
My, not so little anymore, sister is studying abroad, which is so very exciting and amazing and unbelievable, right? Well, yes, but it also scary and anxiety causing and crazy. And you are probably thinking, “okay, this overprotective older sister needs to calm down.”
And yes, I agree. So how do I do that and where is this anxiety coming from?
Well, first off, I have dealt with this same anxiety before unfortunately, and the cause of it was losing my sister about three years ago.
Since losing Ryane, I have struggled with thoughts of security and safety for my family and loved ones. Ryane taught me the hard lesson that life is fragile and can be so very short. I was struggling with anxiety, worrying that every phone call I received would be another bad news call. If someone called me twice and I missed both calls, I was a mess. Thinking that I had lost someone else important in my life. It caused me to have flashbacks to the night I found about about Ryane.
So I was dealing with this anxiety for awhile, and it didn’t rule my life and I didn’t really show anyone the fear, but it was definitely a thought every time I got a call from anyone or some sent a text message that sounded like bad news, etc.
One day, my friend, Morgan Torres, actually recommended to me a book called “Psalm 91: God’s Shield of Protection” by Peggy Joyce Ruth and Angelia Ruth Schum. She had no idea what was going on in my life. She didn’t know I was grappling with this anxiety for my loved ones. So she hand delivers this book to me, and I begin reading.
And because of this book, I was finally able to relax for the first time in a long time. Now Psalm 91 is a bit long (I will include it at the very end of this post, so you can read it!), but SO POWERFUL. It is all about calling upon God to protect you.
The book is written amazingly, interweaving knowledge and wisdom, with true stories of the power of this prayer. You can check it out here if you are at all interested: Psalm 91 Book on Amazon
I know time has done wonders to heal my soul and my anxiety, but for all those who worry about your loved ones, here is your weapon against the darkness of the world. The power behind it speaks for itself.
My advice is if you don’t have time to pray the whole thing every day, or just want a line to quickly say daily, I would recommend reading through and finding the line that really speaks to you. My favorite is line 7, where it says,
Though a thousand fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
near you it shall not come.
This is a quick reminder to me every day of the power our God has. It is also really easy to remember and to pull out in times of need. Because the power speaks for itself, God will protect you and those you love if you call upon Him.
As I was reading this book, I actually went to West Virginia for the first time with my boyfriend’s family. We went on a canoe trip down the trough, and it started as a beautiful day, but about halfway through a crazy storm began. I’m not not talking like just a casual rain, I mean giant trees were falling next to our camp site, it was a downpour and microbursts of wind were picking up our tents and throwing them. Definitely a bit scary, but the first thing that came to mind, was line seven (above). “Thousands will fall at your side, ten thousand at your right sides, near you it shall not come.” Which I thought was so fitting as these crazy trees were falling around us. So I just kept repeating that to myself, and it brought me comfort. Even as it continued to pour for a few hours more. It finally stopped and we made our escape.
I like to think that the Psalm did throw some extra protection my way during this crazy turn of events, and I still believe it can help in other situation as well.
I read this book a year ago, and I forgot about it for a little while, until I started noticing my anxiety was back as I worried for my little sister studying abroad all the way in Europe for the semester, and I started having flashbacks again. The call about Ryane. The despair. All of it hitting me again. So my mind came to rest on this passage. And it slowly began to ease my mind. I made a poster for the wall in my room as a daily reminder of God’s protection and strength for me and my family. I’m hoping to read it daily, so I can keep that worry at bay and really trust in the Lord.
If you want to check out the poster you can here: Psalm 91 Poster
I’m sure some of you are asking how I believe this with Ryane passing. How do you explain God protecting her, if she died? Well, all I can say to that is, there is evil in the world. And that is why Ryane is gone. I do not think I will every understand why she couldn’t have been saved, BUT I do believe that God’s Plan is bigger than I can imagine.
I hope it helps you as much as it has helped me ❤
PSALM 91 ——
1 You who dwell in the shelter of the Most High,
who abide in the shade of the Almighty,
2 Say to the LORD, “My refuge and fortress,
my God in whom I trust.”
3 He will rescue you from the fowler’s snare,
from the destroying plague,
4 He will shelter you with his pinions,
and under his wings you may take refuge;
his faithfulness is a protecting shield.
5 You shall not fear the terror of the night
nor the arrow that flies by day,
6 Nor the pestilence that roams in darkness,
nor the plague that ravages at noon.
7 Though a thousand fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
near you it shall not come.
8 You need simply watch;
the punishment of the wicked you will see.
9 Because you have the LORD for your refuge
and have made the Most High your stronghold,
10 No evil shall befall you,
no affliction come near your tent.
11 For he commands his angels with regard to you,
to guard you wherever you go.
12 With their hands they shall support you,
lest you strike your foot against a stone.
13 You can tread upon the asp and the viper,
trample the lion and the dragon.
14 Because he clings to me I will deliver him;
because he knows my name I will set him on high.
15 He will call upon me and I will answer;
I will be with him in distress;
I will deliver him and give him honor.
16 With length of days I will satisfy him,
and fill him with my saving power.