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Did you know that an estimated 31.1% of U.S. adults will experience an anxiety disorder during their life time?1 That’s a lot of people! In addition, one quarter of adolescents suffer anxiety disorders, putting them at higher risk of poor school performance and higher risk of substance abuse.2 Clearly, anxiety is a problem many face.
So, in the week of Thanksgiving, is there any hope for those with anxiety? Or will this holiday just be one more thing to be anxious about? I guess that depends on whether we are focused on a holiday, or on what the holiday is about – giving thanks to God. If we are stressed by the guest list, setting the table, cooking the food and more, we may miss the best part.
You see, Philippians 4:6 tells us that giving thanks can help with anxious feelings. It says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”
The hope to relieve anxiety is not in the act of giving thanks, as much as in the One to whom we give it. Giving thanks focuses us on our almighty, loving Father. It helps us focus on what he has given us. It reminds us that he is the source of all good things and that he is in control. Today, give thanks to God and take your requests to him.
- “Prevalence of Any Anxiety Disorder Among Adults,” National Institute of Mental Health, https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/any-anxiety-disorder.
- “Facts and Statistics,” Anxiety and Depression Association of America, https://adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/facts-statistics.
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.