Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A ‘Necessary’ Anxiety

It is easy to find ourselves inexplicably tending toward fear over the length or breadth of life. Over both dimensions we’re exposed. One of the purposes of everyday anxiety is it is teaching us what we ought to know now. It’s bringing us to, or back to, unreconciled issues for which God knows we can reconcile.

Two Dimensions

It’s necessary to understand that there are two dimensions that draw us toward anxiety. The first regards the length of our chronological lives, from day-dot to day-dead and includes thoughts of death, the past and the future. The second is the band-width of life; the daily reality that spans our influence and concern over life generally, from the period’s perspective. This is the anxiety we face about our present situations.

Both of these dimensions add their own anxieties and they interact heavily with each other too, combining to bring unwanted dynamism to our fretting.

These two—the breadth and length—then, are like the north-south and east-west axes on a compass. Our anxieties can be tracked both ways.

But, now let’s get into the mechanics of exploration!—to the resolution, potentially, of our dilemmas.

Allusions to a Treasure Hunt

Resolving anxiety is never easy—it’s possibly often like a difficult treasure hunt. It begins tenuously. In a treasure hunt things are tantalising; not so with anxiety. But otherwise they share a sense of mystery... one is fun and so very exciting, the other scaling and deplorable. But, as per the treasure hunt our anxieties have much hope for rectification if we seek earnestly and long enough without giving way to an undoing of ourselves.

The theory is where we seek redress to our dilemmas of anxiety we at least have a chance of learning more about who we actually are, and who God’s created us to be. This process is not without its pain.

Anxiety – A Good Purpose?

Anxiety—though not the clinically-pathological kind—compels us to grow. In controlled portions, then, it’s a very good blessing. It forces us to problem-solve and commit to growing with ourselves.

The chilled subjective reality of anxiety—one that we readily do not see—is calmness exists in turmoil; peace in numbness.

Being still helps, at least some part, and at least for the moment. It facilitates rationality, for it may not change our circumstances but it does, for a time, transform our outlook.

A peace beyond peace can therefore be felt. It is difficult perhaps to ‘feel’ a feeling we cannot readily feel. But never truer, it’s there alright.

Our anxieties are bringing us some benefit; not now so much, as for the future.

© 2010 S. J. Wickham.

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