2020-04-02
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There are countless Bible verses that mention hope. Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you says the LORD, plans to prosper you and not harm you, to give you hope and a future.” Romans 5:5 says, “Hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit whom He has given us.” We know from Scripture, that there is power in hope. Now, the medical world is backing up this notion. There are studies that show that hope can reduce anxiety.

While the University of Houston associate professor of clinical psychology, Matthew Gallagher addresses the importance of hope in a medical journal entry. Gallagher reports in Behavior Therapy that hope is a trait that predicts resilience and recovery from anxiety disorders.

His study examined the role of hope in predicting recovery in a clinical trial of 223 adults in cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) for one of four common anxiety disorders: social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder, Science Daily reports.

"In reviewing recovery during CBT among the diverse clinical presentations, hope was a common element and a strong predictor of recovery," said Gallagher. He also reported that moderate-to-large increases in hope and changes in hope were consistent across the five separate CBT treatment protocols.

Hope is closely related to other positive psychology constructs, such as self-efficacy and optimism, that have also been shown to have clear relevance to promoting resilience to and recovery from emotional disorders, said Gallagher.

Having hope, particularly in times of trial can draw us closer to God and help eliminate the fear we’re holding in our hearts.

God has a perfect plan for you. Sometimes it seems like His plans are always different from our plans, but His plans are always perfect. He never does it all at once, just step by step because He wants to teach us to walk by faith, not by sight. It’s important that we are patient and trust in His timing, especially when we’re struggling with anxiety. When we’re stressed and anxious, it’s easy for us to lose sight of all that God offers us. When we recognize that God has a perfect plan for our life, no trial we face, including anxiety, can defeat us.

One big way to believe in hope is to believe in the power of miracles. When you’re struggling with anxiety and facing very hard situations, God wants you to remember that miracles happen. These miracles show up in every dream that you have that comes true, in every enlightening moment you have, in every person who has moved or transformed your life, and in every person you love – in these very moments, God’s making miracles happen.

These miracles aren’t always going to be big. Sometimes, they are small. He is bringing you small miracles so that you can believe in the bigger ones. Look around you. When you look for the small miracles, you will see that they are everywhere.

God loves you immensely and He has amazing plans for your life. His plans are not intended to harm us but prosper us. God knows the plans He has for you, even if you don’t know them or understand them. God knows your future and is planning it better than anyone else can. Hope is the knowledge that we are being changed for the better as we trust in God’s promises. No action you make and no sin that you commit can make Him love you any less. The Bible tells us, “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know Him.” When life gets hard, it’s important that you remember that God loves you – no matter how many mistakes you make or how many times you are angry with Him. God doesn’t love us for superficial, earthly reasons. God loves you for you.

It is hard to find hope when the world seems to dark, but God wants you to remember that your trials can lead to strength. God will carry you through your anxiety and help you combat any fear that comes with it. The Bible tells us, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze” (Isaiah 43:2). Every difficult situation you face, whether big or small, is preparing you to be stronger. God will use your trials to produce greater faith and strength if you allow Him to.

Your pain has purpose, even when you don’t understand why in this moment. Building a foundation of hope will help carry you through the storms of life. First, submit yourself to God. He is the source of our hope. When we come to Him in humility, He restores us. Next, strengthen your faith. Allow God’s previously fulfilled promises to renew your hope. God has given us written record of countless ways He has provided hope for believers.

Anxiety isn’t easy but we can find peace in hope because God assures us of it. It’s important that you remember that God listens, knows and understands what you’re going through and wants nothing more than for you to eliminate anxiety. When life gets hard or even when you begin to question the things that are happening around you, trust God. Believe that He is by your side and has a bigger plan for you, for us, even if it’s beyond our comprehension.



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