Quelling (Homeschool) Anxieties With Scripture {www.boldlytanya.com}I have been dreading today since November. I’ve been here before. The first day back to school isn’t new to me. Yet I am afraid precisely because I know what I am up against: me.

I put so much pressure on myself to get this homeschool thing right. As I ticked each day of break off the calendar, my heart raced a little faster. Anxiety grew in my heart and worry grew in my mind.

Am I going to get it right? Am I going to do what is best? Am I going to be able to do it at all?

Catastrophizing is my superpower. I can turn the simplest of events into cataclysmic disaster faster than you can spell catastrophizing or cataclysmic. While I am becoming more self-aware and learning ways to combat this unwanted quirk, it still manages to show up and inflict damage before I can contain it.

I am also a person who decomposes under pressure. When things get hard, I don’t buckle down. I crumble. I turn into a sobbing heap of uselessness. So the pressure I add on doesn’t help at all. It hinders.

One of the ways I try to combat my anxiety is through control. I try to plan for and manage all of the disasters my anxiety foresees. But again, the first ripple of something unplanned or outside of my control unleashes an angry, anxiety-riddled beast lurking somewhere between my lower intestines and tailbone. It comes out snarling and bearing claws, ready to pounce on the offender and bully it into submission. Which never works.

This time, I decided to combat my fears by doing something different. I wanted to dig into God’s word. After all, “God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline” (2Tim 1:7 NLT). I can exercise the power, love, and self-discipline given by God to overcome the ungodly spirit of fear controlling me. What better way to do that than wielding the sword of scripture?

So I was digging in when I came across this little gem of a verse.

“For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs” (Zep 3:17 NLT).

I knew immediately that this was my verse and my prayer for the next semester.

What a precious reminder of the Lord’s presence. Although He is high and mighty, He doesn’t sit high on a throne looking down His mighty nose at us. He dwells among us, His people. And His presence isn’t passive. He is a victorious warrior; our mighty savior conquering our fear with His love.

Moreover, He delights in us. It’s easy to take something like that for granted. Who are we compared to God’s splendor? But we cannot forget we are His children created for a specific purpose and called to a specific task. For me, in this season, it is homeschooling the children he blessed me with. Maybe it is the same for you, or maybe it is different. Regardless, the result is the same. God delights with gladness when His children do what he created and called them to do.

There is both hope and joy in that. We don’t have to be afraid because God is ever present with us. And we can trudge through whatever comes our way knowing God delights in us. In light of that, what do we have to fear? See how His love calms us? We can rest easy knowing He is there.

In context, Zephaniah is a book prophesying the impending wrath of God in hopes of motivating his people to repentance. There’s a lot of talk of judgment and it can be quite unsavory. However, almost at the very end, the prophet reminds of God’s love and joy and plan for restoration.

While I pray I am not facing impending wrath because of my wickedness, the truth is homeschooling is a tool God uses for my sanctification. So many times I fail and so many times I fall to my knees begging for mercy, forgiveness, and grace. But God is always there restoring and sanctifying me.

To me, this verse is a reassuring squish-hug from God. It’s like he acknowledges the difficulty of obedience and the pain of purification and He wraps me up and rubs my back and tells me everything will be okay. He is still here and he still loves me.

And then he sings a song.

In my head, it’s a first-person version of “He’s Still Working On Me.”

I’m still working on you.

To make you who you should be…

As a gift, I wanted to share a printable version of the verse image I made. It looks exactly like the picture, incase you are wondering. 

Also, I would love to know what verses you turn use to quell your anxieties, be it homeschool or something else. Let me know in the comments.

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