Ordinary Time, 4th Sunday (B) The APA tells us: Anxiety is an emotion characterized by feelings of tension, worried thoughts, and physical changes like increased blood pressure... Anxiety is not the same as fear, but they are often used interchangeably. Anxiety is considered a future-oriented, long-acting response broadly focused on a diffuse threat, whereas fear is an appropriate, present-oriented, and short-lived response to a clearly identifiable and specific threat.

Why is everyone so anxious these days? Right from pregnancy, a mother and father need to establish a sense of security for their children. The Bible recognizes that anxiety is a part of everyday life. You need to let your anxiety talk to you. The parts of us who are anxious need to share their burden. Then we need to move through that anxiety to a place of security.

So where can we find security? The very things we gravitate to when we feel anxious are probably making things worse. Security comes from safe, healthy relationships. But our human relationships will never be enough. Jesus is the rock who speaks with authority. He leads us to our true parents: God our Father and Mary our Mother. This is where we find the peace that passes all understanding.

(28 Jan 2024)

Going Deeper: Make time to thank God every morning for the gift of a new day, and talk to God about whatever part of your upcoming day might be making you anxious. At the end of every day, notice: 1) a blessing, 2) a challenge, 3) how God was with you, and took care of what you were anxious about, and 4) a way that you were Jesus to someone else. Begin and end each day with gratitude.

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