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Dealing With Anxiety

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***"This blog is about situational anxiety or thought patterns, not anxiety rooted in our bodies' chemistry. Some will need help from trained professionals."


Dealing with anxiety: What is anxiety?

The Mayo Clinic says that anxiety is a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome.”  

Every one of us has experienced some level of anxiety. From the time we’re in middle school, our minds would torment us, asking over and over if the person we had a crush on liked us back.   

Or it might have been right before college graduation, anticipating that first employer to call us and say “Congrats!  We like you enough to hire you - your salary will be 20,000/year!” And we’d be okay with that because it settled our little anxious minds.  

And for some of us, it’s waiting to get test results back that will tell us whether our lives will be turned upside down.  

No matter what stage of life we’re in, we experience the unknown.  And the unknown, for so many of us, brings with it crippling, paralyzing anxiety.  Whether it’s a lack of control or fear of change is different for every person.  But anxiety doesn’t discriminate - it makes a house call to everyone.  

And how often do we open the door? All the time! 

Not only do we open up, we invite anxiety in!  We feed it, refill its coffee cup, and ask it to spend the night!  More often than not, anxiety slowly starts to unpack its suitcase and make itself a member of our families.  

Would you let an ill-meaning stranger take up residence with your most precious inner circle?  Probably not.  So why be so hospitable to this destructive emotion?  

 Why do we have anxiety in the first place?  

 An important part of dealing with anxiety is addressing why it’s caused.  Where does anxiety come from? For many of us, it can come from past experiences of loss or disappointment.  We may have been conditioned to lower our expectations so that we’re not disappointed or let down. 

Or perhaps we struggle with trying to control every detail of our lives.  Maybe, we fear that the worst will always happen.  

Whatever your reason, anxiety begins by irritating our weak spots and disrupting our peaceful train of thought.  It can range from being vague and unsettling all the way to being physically debilitating.  

 What’s the first thing we do when anxiety starts bubbling up? 

 In her book, “Get out of your head”, Jennie Allen says that our thoughts determine our life.  We can be taken captive by one emotion and our minds begin to spiral up or down depending on how we react.  

However, the Bible tells us that we are to take every thought captive.  We are instructed to hold up those thoughts to the light of Christ.  Easier said than done but it’s important that we examine what we think because not everything that crosses your mind is true or even from you.  As the old saying goes, we can’t stop a bird from flying over our heads but we can stop it from making a nest 

How do we defeat anxiety? 

It’s not easy to examine every thought that passes through our brains every day.  Experts estimate that the mind thinks between 60,000 – 80,000 thoughts a day!  Imagine having to comb through each one of those; we’d never get anything done.  That’s why this practice of questioning our own thoughts is just that, a practice!  It takes time to even begin recognizing those thoughts and feelings that can trigger a toxic spiral.  

These feelings usually deal with seasons or situations that are uncertain.  And uncertainty can cause us to be paralyzed with fear of the unknown.  

Tony Robbins says “The quality of your life is in direct proportion to the amount of uncertainty you can comfortably deal with.”  Non-Christians deal with this uncertainty by putting their faith or trust in earthly things like the stock market, their business and themselves.   But as Christ followers, we have the ultimate source of security: God. 

1 Peter 5:7 says to “Cast your anxieties on Him because He cares for you.”  We’re allowed to comfortably deal with a great amount of uncertainty because God shoulders our cares and worries.  We can eliminate anxiety by surrendering our lives to Him.  Just like identifying the beginning of anxiety is a practice, so is releasing control to Christ.  It takes repetition and consistent implementation.    

Posted by Tess Hammock with
in Faith

Helping Kids Understand Communion

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I remember a time when communion was just a plate of crackers and grape juice being passed from row to row.  (I always tried to steal extra crackers but my hand got ‘popped’ by my mother.)  I figured the reason was that there wasn’t enough of Jesus to go around.  

Nevertheless, my hunger for these ‘delicious’ communion crackers could not be satisfied!  I was a major plunderer as a child, so I dug and dug around the storage closet at our church until I found it: the holy grail...or in my case, the box of forbidden crackers.  I hunkered down in the closet, polishing off the box and sat, somewhat satisfied, in my bloated state.  

It wasn’t because I particularly enjoyed the taste (read: cardboard) but it was the mere fact that I wasn’t allowed to have as many as I wanted.  Suffice to say, I didn’t understand the purpose of communion, other than we got to eat a pre-lunch snack in church. And so it is with many young children.    

During Easter, our families take part in many traditions, chief among them is communion.  So while we are celebrating this time in our homes, parents are taking on the role of pastor more fully. 

For many families, communion isn’t something we talk about extensively. How do you explain to a five-year old that they’re partaking of “body” and “blood”?  That’s where it becomes important to understand the purpose behind communion before communicating it to your children.  

Communion, while a holy tradition, is rather simple.  Here are easy ways to clarify why we as Christians still take part in communion.    

Where does the idea of communion come from?

The whole premise behind communion came from Jesus himself!  If you recall, Jesus and His disciples were sitting down to their last supper (Passover) and He used this time to explain what event would happen next (the cross.)  While the disciples weren’t fully aware of what would come to pass, Jesus wanted them, and subsequently all Christians, to use communion as a way to remember Him, together.  Which is why we use a liquid to represent His blood, which was spilled to cleanse our sins, and bread for His body, which was beaten and broken for us.  

Kids memory verse: Luke 22: 19 “This is my body, which is given for you.  Do this in remembrance of me.”  

Who participates in communion? 

Communion is for anyone who has asked Jesus into their hearts. While this can be a difficult thing for kids to understand, it’s also imperative that we get this distinction right.  For those who have put their trust fully in Jesus, we may eat and drink but for those who don’t yet have that relationship with Christ, it’s better if they abstain. It’s also important to note that we cannot judge the intentions of someone’s heart and they may take of communion if they choose. We do not have the authority to say whether someone can take part.  

To partake in communion is to remember the sacrifice Jesus made in order for us to be in union with the Father.  For those who do not believe, they cannot be united with God.  While this may seem harsh, it also comes back to the basic principle of salvation.  

Kids memory verse: John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” 

Should my child take communion?

If you’re reading this, then your child is probably enrolled in RS Kids or is a part of your church’s children’s ministry, which is an amazing thing!  But you may be wondering, if communion is for those who have accepted Jesus, are children included in that?

If your child is old enough to understand the premise of sin, sincerely accept Jesus as their savior, and put their faith in the Father, then absolutely they may partake!  But, just like with any other human, the basic qualification for communion is a relationship with Christ, and that goes for children as well.  

Kids memory verse: 1 Corinthians 11:28-29 “Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup.  For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves.”

How to take communion at home:

God never said the ‘blood’ must be grape juice or wine.  He also didn’t say the ‘body’ must be the prepackaged crackers I so easily enjoyed as a child.  The blood and body are meant to be representations of His sacrifice. You can take communion with Mountain Dew and Cheez-Its if that’s what you have.  The important part of communion is the remembrance of Jesus and the gift of salvation bought through His suffering.  


We hope this article helps you share more of Jesus with your kids. As Easter fast approaches, we encourage you and your family to take communion together and discuss the great and powerful gift we have in Christ.  Thank you for being a part of Rock Springs Church!  

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Posted by Tess Hammock with