Are You an Anxious Mom?

Are You An Anxious Mom?

What is your stronghold?

What is it that makes you feel like you have plummeted 5 million feet below sea level, with a weight around your ankle and no air tank? What causes your heart to beat too fast and anxious thoughts to race through your mind? What grips you like a bully holding down your arms?

For me, I struggle with a few things.

But the worst, by far, is fear.

F.E.A.R.

There’s an actual feeling I associate with fear. It’s an oppressive, smothering sensation when fear is at its worst.

My fear surrounds harm coming to my kids or myself.

Not only do I stress about common scenarios like one of them falling off the monkey bars or getting hit with a rogue baseball, but I plan ahead with my worry.

Driving sometimes is an exercise in deep breaths and reciting scripture because I wonder if “today” is the day we will be hit head-on by an out-of-control semi or if a construction truck will have neglected to tie down its metal tubes and one will fly off and crash through our windshield. Or, what if someone fails to stop at a red light and I’m T-boned? What if I don’t see the train coming? What if the rusty supports on the bridge decide to give way right as I’m crossing? How will I possibly release all of the kids in time from their seat belts/car seats and swim them all to safety?

And when we make it home safely, I have other things that clutter my mind and take my breath away.

Like how Evangelical Christians are now being considered hate groups. I wonder if that verse in the Bible where Jesus says, “But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say” (Matthew 10:19) will become a reality in my lifetime.

Do you see?

It is exhausting being in my head.

Exhausting and unnecessary. And unproductive.

Deuteronomy 31:6:

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” 

I used to think that verse was God shushing me and stroking my hair while he calmly whispered to me.

But then I read something that rocked my world, and not in a mother-holding-her-sleeping-baby kind of “rocked.” No, this was in a meteor-the-size-of-Texas kind.

Joshua 1:9 says:

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

My eyes were opened. It’s God asking, “Have I not COMMANDED you…”

Commanded you.

This was God saying, “I am not asking you, nor am I suggesting to you, but I am DEMANDING that you not fear” (Mandy paraphrase).

Demanding with authority.

Look at the following definitions for Command: directing authoritatively, to demand or receive as one’s due, to have or exercise direct authority, to dominate as if from an elevated place

So, yeah … God isn’t cooing in our ears, “Shhhh, darlin’. Everything’s gonna be okay.” (Said with a slight southern drawl.)

No! He is pointing in a “Uncle Sam wants YOU!” manner and TELLING us we are not allowed to fear.

Not. Allowed.

We have been commanded not to fear.

So, no longer can I look at God’s directive as merely for my own good, but as a direct order with which I must comply.

I learned some interesting things while reading Lysa TerKeurst’s book, Unglued. In it, she explained how our bodies react physiologically to fear. Our fight or flight response kicks in and actually stimulates parts of our brain that focus on getting us out of whatever the situation is that is causing the fear or anxiety. That reaction actually keeps the brain from thinking logically. Therefore, we are not able to think clearly or make wise decisions.

God certainly does not want us making poor decisions. He wants us thinking logically.

So if we allow fear to consume us, if we focus on that anxiety or those things that make us afraid, it interferes with making wise decisions.

Is this an area in which you struggle — with fear and anxiety? Is it a stronghold from which you just can’t seem to break free? You can join me on a journey through Scripture and of listening to God speak to an anxious heart in my new eBook The Anxious Mom: Learning to Cope Using God’s Word.

Get your FREE copy of THE ANXIOUS MOM here.

The Anxious Mom

Editor’s Note: This post is adapted from The Anxious Mom: Learning to Cope Using God’s Word by Mandy Pagano and has been used with permission.

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About

Mandy is wife to Joe and mom to 6 children ages 2 to 9 years. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology and was pursuing a master's in elementary education when baby number 6 threw a monkey wrench in her carefully laid-out plans. So instead of teaching a classroom of children, God pressed on her heart to homeschool her oldest three, act as the coordinator for her local MOPS, and blog her heart out at Suburban Stereotype, Deliberate Women, and The Time-Warp Wife. Mandy feels compelled to live a life of faith in God with boldness and diligence and encourages other women to do the same. She and her family live in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where they juggle soccer schedules, teach Sunday school at their church, and try to squeeze every moment out of the day. Find Mandy on Facebook and Twitter.


  • I was so scared I was not going to be able to comment on this article!!! This seriously was like reading an analysis of my own mind. I LITERALLY stopped my husband mid-sentence as he was telling me about the latest depressing news story and the corruption of our political leaders when I got this in my inbox and scanned it over. I cannot even begin to tell you how perfectly timed this was for us, and I am praying that just simply the reminder will help us to focus more. It is super, super easy to be anxious today, especially with the constant stream of horrible coming at us, but you are absolutely right! God commands us to knock that off and focus on Him. So, thanks for the swift kick in the butt =0) It was well received!

    • Mandy P

      Julie,
      I’m so sorry I am just NOW responding to you! I am SO glad this was a help to you. I also find that I have to skip the news and watch what makes it in my social media newsfeed much more closely so that I don’t get tangled in the web of fear and anxiety. It’s nice to hear that I’m not alone in this battle. :)

      ~Mandy

      • No, you surely are not alone. Should we start a club? It is sad though how much these things come across our eyes, but I also know that God truly does love to provide just the right situations for us to change or be changed. Walking with Him is surely never an uneventful journey =0)

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Are You an Anxious Mom?

by Mandy Pagano time to read: 3 min
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