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Reform Magazine | October 22, 2019

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Commitment-Phobe: Tackling my anxiety

Commitment-Phobe: Tackling my anxiety

‘There is not a clear or helpful conversation about anxiety in the Church’

It seems that since I have stopped buying into making myself a better Christian, I have started to become more whole. I am no longer racing to get to the breakthrough moment of great discipline in prayer, quiet time with God, or time with my Bible. I have virtually dropped all of it. I have been going on a much more contemplative journey, which I hope will bear great fruit. I have been getting fit, physically and mentally, and I am hoping this outside-in approach will get me fit spiritually.

I have been reading a fantastic book by Sarah Wilson called First, We Make the Beast Beautiful. Great title, right? It is a conversation about anxiety – hers, and how her experience and research might speak to anyone else’s. It is not a self help book but it is proving really helpful. I knew I was ‘highly strung’, at times neurotic, possibly a little pessimistic and had had many moments of real panic, but I had not realised that this all came under the umbrella of anxiety. Reading this book was like arriving home, a real ‘Aha!’ moment. Nothing to be scared of, just an honest evaluation and who I am, and a step closer to enjoying a fuller life.

I can now see how many decisions/indecisions and arguments have come from being in the throes of anxious spiral. I am now learning how to help myself with these. There is not a very clear or helpful conversation on this in the Church at large. I have known clergy members who are very clear on the importance of working on one’s mental health and of seeking help where necessary, as well as prayer. But congregations seem a lot less clear on this. Perhaps this is why my attempt at doing some app-based Christian meditation was less than successful…

Commitment-Phobe is a Christian

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This is an extract from an article that was published in the October 2019 edition of Reform

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