Today my spirit is vacillating between anticipation and anxiety, as I wait on some of my writing being critiqued and an online writers’ retreat today. My mind racing to the what ifs while excited for the what’s nexts. So what’s the difference? Anticipation is founded on hopeful expectations, whereas anxiety stems from fear (often expressed as worry.)
Two scriptures came to mind that will help me sort out my feelings.
Those who wait upon God get fresh strength. They spread their wings and soar like eagles, They run and don’t get tired, they walk and don’t lag behind.Isaiah 40:31 (MSG)
Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?
So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.Matthew 6:27,34 (NLT)
In the first scripture the writer is waiting. Other translations use words like hope or trust. They aren’t waiting with anxiety or fear but with anticipation. They know God is working. They know they can count on him to show up. And how does God show up? With strength and endurance.
In the second verse, worry is addressed as fruitless. Worry only serves to make us miserable. It can’t change the future but it can wear us down. It develops a pattern of worry.
That pattern can be broken.
My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth!
The Lord keeps you from all harm and watches over your life. The Lord keeps watch over you as you come and go, both now and forever.Psalm 121:2,7-8 (NLT)
I can turn my eyes to God in hopeful expectation, knowing he’s got my back. He will watch over me and be my help to lift me up and give me wings to fly.
On a side note: these scriptures are just drops in the ocean. There are many more that come to mind. If you have trouble shifting from fear to hope, from anxiousness to anticipation, try doing some word searches on fear, hope, trust, cares, worry, etc., to find some more helpful verses. God doesn’t want us to bear these burdens alone.
Grace & Peace,