“When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.”
– Psalm 94:19 NIV

by Leigh Ellen Eades
Guest Contributor

You wouldn’t know it by looking at me, but I’m a wrestler.

Oh, don’t get me wrong, I’m not a fan of wrestling.
I’ve never donned the seats of a wrestling match.
My television isn’t tuned in when the latest match is happening.
And I walk out of the room when my husband catches highlights on ESPN.

But I wrestle every day.

Not with humans.
But with anxiety.

There are days when the jostle of my back and forth match is small – a sink full of dirty dishes, a crowded aisle in the grocery store and a red light when I’m already late.

Then there are days when the match feels like it will never end. When fear swells into a life size sumo wrestler pushing me around until I feel paralyzed. I fumble through the day hoping for an ounce of peace or joy, but go to bed empty.

What do we do when anxiety tries to overtake our lives?

Who will rise up for me against the wicked? Who will take a stand for me against evildoers?
Psalm 94:16 NIV

In Psalm 94 we read about a time when the psalmist cried out for God to rise up in his circumstance. It seems the works and words of evil doers were at an all time high. Heavy from the turmoil, the psalmist asks God, “how long will the wicked be allowed to gloat?” (Psalm 94:3 NLT)

The psalmist’s anguish is palpable. His battle has been long. He’s tired. And he wants relief.

Anxiety can feel a lot like this. It leaves us tired, unable to connect with others, and wondering if we will ever be “normal” again.


Anxiety may isolate us, but God runs to us.

In the battle with anxiety God never leaves us. He’s keenly aware of our struggles. We may feel alone, but God is near. He strengthens us to keep going when we want to quit. And, when we are at our lowest, I believe He draws us close and sustains us.

How does God sustain us?

Like a momma who gathers a distressed child into her arms, God pulls us close and consoles us.

“When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.”
– Psalm 94:19 NIV

The arms of a momma are a safe place when a child is fearful or hurting. Likewise, God is our safe place in the storms of life. His presence can calm us like no other.

Sometimes, God’s consolation can’t be described, it can only be felt. Other times it looks like:

  • A scripture that ministers to you at the right moment.
  • A worship song that lifts your spirit.
  • A prayer whispered over your heart.
  • A friend with a kind word or gesture.
  • A quiet moment in His presence.
  • A walk through the park.

God uses moments like these to deposit joy into our hearts. Anxiety may make us feel alone, insecure and without purpose, but the truth is we are God’s dearly loved children. Children in whom He delights in and sings over. Children He has lasting plans for – and no amount of anxiety can change that!

If anxiety is trying to sneak in on you today or if your joy feels distant, here is a prayer for you.

Heavenly Father, Thank you for never leaving me or forsaking me. Thank you for consoling me and bringing joy to my soul. You are my one constant, Lord, and I will forever be grateful for you. As I journey through this season, help me to rest in your love. Where my trust is weak, strengthen me. Where my heart is faint, revive me. Where my joy has dwindled, renew me. In Jesus Name, Amen.


1) Make a Joy Refuge, a “place” where you can run into the presence of God’s protection during times of anxiety.

2) For each of Leigh Ellen’s suggestions for feeling God’s consolation, name something that specifically brings you joy. Keep the list handy for times you need Him near!

My Scripture verse is….

My Worship song is…

My prayer is…

My friend is…

My place for a quiet moment is…

My place for walking in the park is…



In what situations does anxiety leave you feeling isolated and alone? What comfort do you find in Joshua 1:9?

Share your thoughts about today’s devotion in the comments below


Leigh Ellen Eades is a writer on a mission to tell Jesus’ story. She’s passionate about her family, treasures coffee with friends and relishes quiet moments reading a book. You can connect with Leigh Ellen on Facebook, Twitter or her blog, Raising an Arrow





Shannon Geurin

I LOVED this so much Leigh. You’re such a gifted writer! I don’t struggle with anxiety, but you wrote about it in such a way that I could feel it right there with you. Thank you for being vulnerable, you’ve touched my soul tonight.:-)

Michele O’Leary

Leigh Ellen, your words are soothing and holds the promise of God with us when anxious thoughts try to tie us down. Thank you, sweet friend, for sharing your heart. Love you. ❤️

Leigh Ellen

Michele, thank you for your sweet words and encouragement! “The Lord is near…” are some of my favorite words in the Bible! Love you big, sister!

Diana Rockwell

Leigh, so thankful for you and your post. My sweet daddy went home to be with Jesus on November 20 and I have had some anxiety. But chasing it with God’s word, helps. Blessings Diana

Leigh Ellen

Diana, I am so very sorry for your loss. Thank you for stopping by today and sharing your heart. God’s Word is our perfect weapon for chasing that anxiety away. Love you, sweet sister!

Veronica Thomas

Leigh Ellen, I deal with anxiety too. Anxiety over being around people, leaving my home, driving in traffic, dealing with Connor and wondering if I am doing the right thing and enough. I deal with whether or not I am a good mom, a good grandma, a good wife. I struggle anxiety over if I am a true Christian or if I think I am but maybe I am not. These anxieties keep me from getting involved with my new church and doing what my calling may be. Thank you for the words from psalms. Thank you for allowing God to use you in this way! You are awesome and you are blessed with the gift of writing! Love you sweet lady ‘

Leigh Ellen

Veronica, thank you for stopping by the Real Joy series today (and for your precious words of encouragement)! I pray the words shared by each lady in this series ministers God’s love and joy to you in a fresh way. You are called and anointed, dear one!


“Sometimes, God’s consolation can’t be described, it can only be felt. Other times it looks like: A scripture that ministers to you at the right moment.” Yes! I just had one of those precious moments of consolation this week! This is so beautiful, true, and timely. I’m a wrestler too, and the holidays seem to embolden my opponent called anxiety. I’m so thankful for all of the ways God consoles me and reminds me of His love and faithfulness, and that I am never alone or without mighty armor! Thank you for these words, Leigh.

Mama Crow

Thanx for sharing Leigh Ellen. I’m so grateful for God and His words you so eloquently pointed out. I pray especially that we all can Rely on Him in our time of need. But also that we can rely on our love for each other. I love you!


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