Having a tool kit of prayers for anxiety at your disposal is incredibly helpful. Whether you struggle with anxiety a lot of the time or find that it flares up when you’re under pressure, prayer is a brilliant way to respond.
But, where do you begin when you’re talking to God about your anxieties? What does the Bible actually promise us as Christians when it comes to feeling anxious? How do we pray about our anxiety in a way that acknowledges what a real struggle it is?
Biblical wisdom about anxiety
It’s important to remember that feeling anxious is nothing to be ashamed of. Being stressed about work, worried about someone or suffering with anxiety are all common and completely understandable. Never feel ashamed about sharing your anxiety or opening up about your worries.
Finding out what the Bible says about stress and anxiety is a brilliant reminder of how we can live. Scripture teaches us that Jesus is the Prince of Peace and that He is capable of removing our stress, our worry and our anxiety with His supernatural provision.
Matthew 6:34 contains one of the most powerful pieces of scripture that talks about anxiety:
“Therefore do no worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
What Matthew gives us in this quote is an amazing strategy for dealing with anxiety. That is, to stay fully present. Matthew encourages us to focus on the day at hand and not to let our minds think ahead to tomorrow. Trying to stay present and grounded in today is a piece of wisdom that can be found in many therapeutic practices, including mindfulness.
While staying present is definitely easier said than done there are a multitude of aids to help us. Daily devotionals like those found on Glorify can be a brilliant way to dedicate a few minutes of your day to focusing on the present.
Prayers for anxiety inspired by Scripture
There’s no right or wrong way to pray for anxiety but if you’re stuck for inspiration then basing your prayers on promises found in scripture is a great starting point. Try praying one of these three prayers for anxiety based on a well-known part of the Bible.
A prayer for anxiety inspired by Romans 8:38-39
“And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow – not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love.”
Pray: God, I know that your love for me is sure and solid. I trust that nothing, no worry or fear that I have, can separate me from your incredible love for me. Thank you for loving me so completely and for being such a sure foundation for me to build my life on.
A Prayer for anxiety inspired by 1 Peter 5:7
“Casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.”
Pray: Jesus, thank you so much for how deeply you care about me. I know that you care about my life and the people in it even more than I do. It’s amazing to be so known and so looked after by you. I lay my worries and anxieties down before you now, knowing that you gladly take them off my hands. Prince of Peace I ask you to come and replace my worries with trust and my fears with your perfect peace.
A prayer for anxiety inspired by Philippians 4:6
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known to God.”
Pray: God, I take a moment now to say how thankful I am for all that you have given me. I know that every good thing in my life and in this world is from you. You are so good that even the rocks cry out in praise! I’m sorry for focusing on the worries and stresses in my life more than I focus on your goodness and your provision. I know that for every problem I face and every fear I have that there is a solution already written in heaven. I ask you now to help me reset my focus so that I dwell on you and not my fears. Like Jesus asleep in the storm, I want to be at peace with you no matter how scary my surroundings are.
A short prayer for anxiety
Composer John Rutter wrote a beautiful song called ‘A Gaelic Blessing’. This song is based on an old Celtic blessing, the exact origins of which are unknown. This blessing makes a brilliant short prayer for anxiety in times of need.
Deep peace of the running wave to you.
Deep peace of the flowing air to you.
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you.
Deep peace of the shining stars to you.
Deep peace of the gentle night to you.
Moon and stars pour their healing light on you.
Deep peace of Christ, of Christ the light of the world to you.
Deep peace of Christ to you.
The best way to pray for stress and anxiety
Is there an activity or something you do that helps calm you down when you’re feeling stressed or anxious? It could be reconnecting with nature by going for a walk, or maybe sweating it out at the gym? Maybe it’s cooking, drawing or soaking in a long bath? On their own these activities are helpful but rarely deal with the deep root of our fears and worries. But, if you combine them with the power of prayer, you invite the supernatural peace of Jesus to come and transform you.
Try adding prayers for anxiety into your go-to de-stressing activity. As you invite Jesus into your headspace while you walk, or run, or read, you give Him the opportunity to move powerfully in your life.