Guarded by the peace of Christ
By: Connecting Faith
If you are struggling with feelings of anxiety, fear, depression or despair, the peace of Christ will guard your mind and heart. Dr. Heather Holleman shares about her personal struggle with acute anxiety, and explains how getting to know the person of Jesus has protected her mind and heart with peace that surpasses all understanding.
“I battled with anxiety and depression for six years, and even though I was under the care of doctors, medication, and also had many years of victory, I still regularly deal with really irrational anxiety. A lot of my students at Penn State are suffering with acute anxiety.”
“What God has been teaching me is really precious about this toxic mindset I have that, ‘anxiety is my identity; this is who I am.’ But when I learned about Jesus’ guardian care, one of the ways He guards us is by peace.”
Heather reminds us that Jesus is our prince of peace and He will guard every detail of our lives.
“If you look at Philippians 4:6-7, that very famous passage that says, ‘we don’t have to be anxious about anything…but the peace of God with guard our heart and minds in Christ Jesus.’ That verb guard means to come under the military protection of peace.”
She shares a few passages that have helped her replace anxiety with the peace of Christ on a daily basis.
“I’ve been asking God, how does someone whose mind really struggles with anxiety, how do I experience you as my guarding God who is peace? You yourself are my peace.”
“May that God of peace give you peace at all times and in every way.” 2 Thessalonians 3:16
To remember the truth about Jesus’ guardian care in her life, Heather explains how she pictures the still waters in Psalm 23.
‘He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters.’ Psalm 23:2
“I really began to think, I’m in the fortress of your peace, even if I’m filled with anxiety today. I know that you are my peace. I can trust you to work out everything that’s concerning me. Jesus you’re a calm place within me and my anxiety began to get better.”
“I know it’s not a cure all, but it really began to get better as I thought about the person of Jesus as my peace.”
Heather Holleman, PhD, is a speaker, writer, and college instructor. She is a faculty member of Penn State’s English Department and teaches both freshman composition and advanced writing. She is author of several books including Guarded by Christ: Knowing the God Who Rescues and Keeps Us.
Also on this edition of Connecting Faith
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