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Stop the blizzard

A Christian Science perspective: How to handle mental blizzards and anxious thoughts.

I could feel another blizzard moving in. Not outside – though we’ve had plenty of those this winter. This one was internal – a swirl of fearful, anxious, unsettled thoughts, coming thick and fast like snowflakes.

We’ve each faced our own mental blizzards at different times when fear or stress seemed to move in and, like an actual snowstorm, trap us in its whistling whirl. I’ve learned, though, that I don’t have to resort to riding out the storm. I can stop the blizzard through prayer.

I love the way Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer of Christian Science, articulated the powerlessness of fearful thoughts when she wrote, “Mortal thoughts chase one another like snowflakes, and drift to the ground” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 250).

I’ve learned in Christian Science that fearful, anxious thoughts aren’t from God, because God is divine Love, as the Bible says (see, for example, I John 4:16). The Bible also explains that we are made by God, who is all-powerful, so thoughts unlike Love possess neither the power to influence us, nor the authority to tell us who we are and where we truly come from. The powerful fact that enables us to stop a blizzard of anxiety and fear in its tracks is this truth of our being: We are not mere mortals, left to the mercy of limitations, lack, failure, and fear. We are the beloved sons and daughters of God, created by our Father-Mother Spirit to live safely in His harmonious universe.

Aggressive thoughts that would try to undermine our God-given peace are just like those snowflakes that chase and careen. They’re a tumbling distraction. By contrast, God’s thoughts come like sunshine – gently illuminating our path and warming us with the comfort of His love.

These thoughts from God don’t simply still the storm; they show us that we could never be at the mercy of the storm to begin with. Right where chaos seems to be, God, eternal Principle, is affirming the perfect order of His kingdom. Right where insecurity would claim that we’re vulnerable, Love is revealing its constancy. Right where all the beliefs of mortality are arrogantly arguing for their actuality, divine Life is reaffirming its allness and infinitude.

Recently, when a work project seemed to be falling apart, it was this realization that turned everything around. In a moment of panic, I texted a Christian Science practitioner. I was positively swirling with the fear that there was “so much resistance in every direction.” Her response cut right through those mortal thoughts of doom and gloom. “God is all there is,” she wrote back. “There isn’t anything to resist His plan.”

I felt peace come over me as I realized I could thank God in advance for taking care of every detail of His already-complete creation. He was all-acting, so every movement was according to His perfect choreography. He was all-knowing, so no detail could be overlooked. As I yielded to these facts, the difficulties dissolved. I found myself not just able to think clearly, but I was also able to witness an absolutely awesome outcome to the project – tangible proof of God’s care.

The Bible promises: “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end” (Jeremiah 29:11). The peace that stops the blizzard of fearful thoughts once and for all comes from knowing that we are not the authors of our own lives and experiences. God has already established His kingdom; His creation is perfect. Every activity is an opportunity to witness, with peace and joy, “the expected end” – the order and harmony that God has outlined. And that we can rely on.

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