Tag Archives: Overcoming anxiety

The Immense Importance of Talking to Yourself During these Coronavirus Days

woman in black shirt facing mirror

Photo by Ivan Oboleninov on

Walking through these days of Covid-19, we are wise to follow the example of David in Psalm 116:7. He wrote…

Return, O my soul, to your rest;
for the LORD has dealt bountifully with you. (ESV)

In this beautiful moment recorded for all history, the shepherd-King David…is talking to himself. And his message to himself (his soul) is powerful: “God has dealt bountifully with you, soul, in the past, and so you can rest now. You need not be anxious now, soul! Look at God’s record of faithfulness to you. He has taken care of you in the past, and he will do so in the future.”

This verse alone is worthy of our meditation – it’s one I’ve got in my memory verse pack – trying to get it deep into my heart. I hope you will do the same.

But my point here today is broader than the hopeful truth in Psalm 116:7. We often struggle in life because we are our own worst enemy – we don’t talk to ourselves, instead we let “ourselves” talk to us.

It wasn’t just David who practiced the spiritual discipline of talking to himself – the Sons of Korah did as well:

Why are you cast down, O my soul,
and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
my salvation and my God. Psalm 42:5, 6 (ESV)

In one of the greatest Christian books ever written (that’s a recommendation if you didn’t notice), Spiritual Depression, Martyn Lloyd Jones wrote this applying the truth in Psalm 42…

“I say that we must talk to ourselves instead of allowing ‘ourselves’ to talk to us! Do you realize what that means? I suggest that the main trouble in this whole matter of spiritual depression in a sense is this, that we allow our self to talk to us instead of talking to our self. Am I just trying to be deliberately paradoxical? Far from it. This is the very essence of wisdom in this matter. Have you realized that most of your unhappiness in life is due to the fact that you are listening to yourself instead of talking to yourself? Take those thoughts that come to you the moment you wake up in the morning. You have not originated them, but they start talking to you, they bring back the problems of yesterday, etc. Somebody is talking. Who is talking to you? Your self is talking to you.”

Lloyd-Jones, D. Martyn. Spiritual Depression: Its Causes and Cures (pp. 20-21). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.

I have told the story a few times, but briefly, it was years ago in college that I struggled greatly with anxiety and obsessive thoughts. And it was this biblical truth of talking to myself which God used to transform me.

Many of us are struggling with fear and anxiety in these days. We have the promises of God. We have reason for great hope. Let’s begin to remind ourselves of God’s faithful provision in times past. Let’s begin to talk to ourselves instead of letting ourselves talk to us.

1 Comment

Posted by on March 19, 2020 in Uncategorized


Tags: , , , , , , , ,

How to Overcome Anxiety by Amazon


Join Edgewood Community Church as we read through the New Testament this year in a program called “Inspired”. Today’s reading is Matthew chapter 6.

Diane and I were both off the Sunday after Christmas, and we made our way to Appleton Alliance, that megachurch on Hwy 41 with huge windows showing what looked like a great children’s ministry. Because of that, I thought it would be a good place for the budding Children’s Ministry Director from Edgewood (my sweetie) to steal some ideas…and I was right. And her husband got a couple of ideas too, which you will see in a moment.

We did get a tour of their terrific kid’s ministry, but for now I’ll just tell you about the worship service we enjoyed: the speaker was their Executive Pastor, Brian Dainsberg, who gave a great message on the most underlined passage of the Bible from Amazon Kindle. Apparently Amazon can track what is most underlined from all those millions of people with a Kindle or Kindle App. Big brother, anyone?

Anyway, do you know what the most popular passage of the Bible is, at least according to Kindle users? It’s from Paul’s letter to the Philippians, chapter 4, verses 6 and 7, which says,

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6-7 (ESV)

Here’s the thing: Apparently people around the world, when they turn to the Bible, are especially drawn to a passage on anxiety. And that’s not too surprising, is it? For we are an anxious people, and this is something that Jesus spoke to in His most famous sermon, the Sermon on the Mount:

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?…Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.”

Mat 6:25, 31 – 32 (ESV)

Of course, Jesus’s answer to anxiety is simple and beautiful: seek first God’s Kingdom, and His righteousness, and all these things would be added (verse 33). In other words, focus on serving the King and advancing His cause, and you can trust that God will provide all you need. Amen.

Brian closed his message with a little twist on a famous sermon from Jonathan Edwards on happiness, where the great New England preacher gave three reasons Christians should be happy. Brian turned them into three reasons we should never be anxious, so when trouble comes in the New Year, and you’re tempted to gnaw your nails off, think about these three wonderful (and absolutely Biblical!) truths:

We should never be anxious…because:

  1. Our bad things will turn out for good.
  2. Our good things can never be taken away from us.
  3. The best things are yet to come.

With these things in mind, it really will be a Happy New Year…not to mention an extremely Happy Forever.

Friday: January 9, Matthew 7






Posted by on January 8, 2015 in Uncategorized


Tags: , , , , , ,

%d bloggers like this: