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7 Things I Do When the Future Scares Me

A few months ago, I found myself battling a sense of uneasiness I couldn’t seem to shake. Anxious thoughts circled around in my mind:

What is going on, Lord?

What is causing this uneasiness?

Why does the future seem so scary?

When I reached out to a couple of trusted friends, I realized they were thinking similar things. We discussed how the world seems to be spinning out of control and how most of us feel like we’re holding on for dear life. But we also talked about God’s faithfulness and how the future has already been written. 

There’s no need to fear the future, but sometimes, we just need a little help putting things into perspective. If you’re feeling uneasy these days, please know you’re not alone. 

Here are 7 things I do when the future scares me:

1. Speak the Name of Jesus

If you haven’t yet heard the powerful song Speak the Name of Jesus by Charity Gayle, you’ll want to take a listen. One of the stanzas addresses fear and anxiety and reminds us that there’s power in the name of Jesus.

Philippians 2:10-11 says, “At the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

When fear of the future creeps in, speak the name of Jesus loud and clear. Remind yourself that fear must bow to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Anxiety can’t stick around when Jesus is present.

A Prayer to Take with You:

Lord, I refuse to allow fear of the future to ruminate in my mind. I replace every anxious thought with Your truth now - in Jesus’ mighty name.

2. Pray Specifically

Sometimes, especially when we’re afraid, we don’t know what to pray. Our petitions seem to fall flat, and we worry that our prayers aren’t powerful enough to make the fear go away. When this happens, I write my anxieties on paper.

Then, one by one, I cross them off the list as I surrender them to the Lord and ask Him to replace them with His truth. For example, if I’m worried about our financial future, I write the word "finances." Then, I pray specifically for God’s provision, thanking Him for being Jehovah-Jireh, my Provider.

A Prayer to Take with You:

Lord, I’m worried about this particular situation, but I know that You are sovereign over all. I trust You to provide what is needed right here, right now. In Jesus’ holy name, amen.

3. Seek God’s Wisdom

So often, our fears are based on nothing more than a thought, suggestion, or opinion. When I find myself fretting over an unknown future, I ask God for clarity and wisdom. I ask Him to shine the light of truth over every concern and remove what doesn’t belong.

Remember, according to James 1:5-6, we can ask God for wisdom - without doubt - and He will give it. Every fear about the future is brought to light by the Word of God, for it is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path.

A Prayer to Take with You:

Lord, I need Your wisdom about the future, and I believe You will give it. Please show me in Your Word how all things will work out for my good and Your glory. In Jesus’ name, amen.

4. Reach Out

As I mentioned in the introduction, I shared my fears about the future with a couple of trusted friends. I knew that by opening up to them, it would alleviate much of what I was worried about. Not only did they assure me they were feeling the same way, but they also pointed me back to Jesus - the Author and Perfecter of my faith.

The truth is, we need God, and we need each other. No matter what the future holds, when we have a few dependable people we can count on, the road becomes far easier to travel.

A Prayer to Take with You:

Lord, please surround me with like-minded sisters in Christ who will walk this journey with me and point me back to You. In Jesus’ name, amen.

5. Find the Joy

What brings you the most joy in life, and how does fear of the future steal that joy?

These are important questions to ask when bombarded with anxious thoughts. By intentionally engaging in things that fill your soul, you’ll have less time to think about what may lie ahead.

Taking a drive in the country, going on a short hike, playing with your grandkids, or enjoying a date night with your husband are all things that can fill your time in the best of ways and reduce the amount of time fretting about the future. If you struggle to find things you enjoy, ask God for help and direction. He loves to give good gifts to those who ask!

A Prayer to Take with You:

Lord, please turn my attention to the most important things in life and fill my days with the people and things I enjoy. In Jesus’ name, amen.

6. Take Good Care of Yourself

During my most anxious seasons, I usually find that I’m not taking very good care of myself. I’m allowing too much junk food, not getting enough exercise, and going too many days without a shower. (Yikes!)

When fear seems to be looming overhead, it’s good to keep in mind that our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit. How we treat them matters. If anxiety is rising, take a look at your daily habits and find a way to incorporate more fresh air, sunshine, healthy food, and plenty of water. You might be surprised at how these basic needs help brighten your view of the future!

A Prayer to Take with You:

Lord, please remind me to take good care of the body You’ve given me. Strengthen me to make healthy food choices and get plenty of fresh air. Help me be a living sacrifice unto You! In Jesus’ name, amen. 

7.  Be Aware of Stumbling Blocks

Along with taking good care of my physical health, I also pay attention to the mental, emotional, and spiritual things that are getting in the way of my peace. For example, if I’m scrolling on social media and constantly seeing negative posts, my mind starts to spiral. 

Be aware of what causes alterations to your mood and begin to weed out those activities. So much of what we do, even without thinking about it, can cause seeds of fear to take root in our minds.

A Prayer to Take with You:

Lord, please make me aware of the mental and emotional things that are causing me to fear and be anxious. Give me the self-discipline to remove harmful and toxic activities from my routine. In Jesus’ mighty name, amen.

Ultimately, there are many uncertainties in the days ahead, but of this, we can be certain: The end of the story has already been written. Jesus wins. There is no need to worry or fear. He’s got this. He’s got you.

Photo Credit: ©Getty Images/sam thomas

Jennifer WaddleJennifer Waddle is the author of several books, including Prayer WORRIER: Turning Every Worry into Powerful Prayerand is a regular contributor for LifeWay, Crosswalk, Abide, and Christians Care International. Jennifer’s online ministry is EncouragementMama.com where you can find her books and sign up for her weekly post, Discouragement Doesnt Win. She resides with her family near the foothills of the Rocky Mountains—her favorite place on earth. 

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The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of Salem Web Network and Salem Media Group.

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