In the reading from 1 Corinthians, the author begins with the statement; “I should like you to be free of anxieties.” I too, would love that we can all be freed from what makes us upset so we can be at peace.
The author goes on to tell how an unmarried man or woman wants to please the Lord. They, as single people, do not have the same concern of seeking to please their spouse and the Lord. Now this can seem to be a statement against marriage, but that is not what the author means. Rather, as a single person, they must concentrate on doing what the Lord has in mind for them so God will be pleased with them. They must do God’s will for them at this stage in their lives. Typically, this means being chaste, worshipping God, pursuing an education or starting a work career. It may mean dating and discerning if this person is the one you would like to spend your life with. Is this God’s will for you, or does He have something else in store for you? This may cause some anxiety, because this is a very important decision. However, with prayer, we can avoid much of this anxiety.
Married folk face the same; we can allow anxiety to enter into our relationships because of the day to day stresses life brings. We face job stresses, money issues, relationship issues and the like. Raising children is a blessing, but we can allow the stresses that come with raising our children to affect how we respond to their needs and our spouse. Our society sees children as a burden rather than the blessing they are, so perhaps we need to step back and re-evaluate how we view children.
All these things can bring anxiety to our lives, if we allow it. But if we have a firm foundation of faith we can be at peace in the midst of a challenging world. I suggest starting your day with calling upon the Holy Spirit to guide you throughout the day. When you feel stressed or anxious ask God to help you see the big picture. The big picture has God as the framework and our cares, concerns, and joys as the details of the picture. This picture also includes the many blessings He has provided. When we look at our day to day world in this way we can keep anxiety at bay and find inner peace. Anxiety is part of every life, but with God’s help we can find peace.