Two weeks ago, I started seeing a counselor, and to say I felt embarrassed, would be an understatement. Sitting on my heels and rocking back and forth between a rock and a hard place (AKA my bathroom floor and the closed door behind me), I burst into tears, letting the floodgates erupt like a shattering dam.

Suffocating my tears into the shower, I stumbled into a daze of heightened anxiety, overwhelming depression, and paralyzing fear. 

“If I’m such a good Christian,” my heart remarked, “Why can’t I fix myself?” the lies of my mind choked at me. “You need to pray more, increase your time in Scripture, and trust God without doubt,” their hypocritical words ripped at my already crumbling mentality. “You already do that,” my Mom gently spoke. “I know,” I sulked, “I just don’t know what else to do.”

And so, with every day came a new sermon, article, or advice from a friend of what I should do; of the thoughts that clouded my vision as to if it was a sin or not, or how I should just “stop worrying,” because it was that easy. But what these words and directions from others didn’t tell me, yet should have was that when you have GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) from a genetically inherited predisposition, you can’t merely “stop worrying.” It isn’t because you’re not a strong enough Christian, or praying and seeking His face enough. It is the result of your fallen humanity that makes you lean into the Father even more.

It is okay to need clinical help. Admitting that you need support is the first step to healing, and I believe God gave us tools like counseling not to say we don’t trust Him, but to humble ourselves into knowing we cannot fight these battles alone. 

Taking a deep breath, I released control and felt led to Psalm 94:19: “When the cares of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul.” 

Yes, I still struggle with anxiety, but even amid our concerns, rather that be depression, addictions, or troubling seas, know that you can experience joy.