Five Biblical Ways to Cope with Anxiety

a woman with her head in her hands trying to cope with anxiety

By Nicole Kauffman

I had just drifted to sleep when my mind was bombarded. 

My eyes shot open with thoughts, memories, and fears. They threatened to swallow me into the darkness.

I wasn’t prepared. I hadn’t known it would get this bad. 

These anxiety attacks have followed me for months, pulling me further into the darkness.

I felt as though a fog had descended upon my life. 

Everything was marked by my anxiety. 

It dictated everything I did or didn’t do.

My faith was strong. 

I thought I was living in surrender and obedience to the Lord. 

I regularly spent time reading and studying the Bible. 

What had gone wrong?

These five biblical ways to cope with anxiety empower us to embrace the rest, peace, and healing Jesus offers. Click to Tweet
a mother and daughter holding hands and spinning in a circle in a green field

God Reaches Out to Us in Our Anxiety

Anxiety was no stranger to me. 

Growing up, I had an anxious personality. 

I’d been through several traumas and learned to cope with the fallout. 

Prayer, Scripture, and community upheld me through difficult seasons.

Something was different about this anxiety—it was consuming me. 

It shook me to my core and led me to a dark place where I questioned God and His love for me.

God reached out in this dark time and drew me back to His love. 

He showed me how to step into His peace and stand firm in His victory. 

Often I feel like I need to fix something when anxiety overwhelms me, but God is Lord over all. 

He is our protector, healer, counselor, and guide. 

While we have a responsibility to take every thought captive (2 Cor 10:5), God stands guard at our hearts. 

He brings sanctification and renewal as we turn to Him. 

Here are five biblical ways to cope with anxiety.

Take every thought captive to obey Christ - 2 Corinthians 10:5 Click to Tweet
a woman with her hands raised and eyes looking up trying to cope with anxiety

How to Cope With Anxiety

1 – Recognize It

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” – Proverbs 4:23 NIV

Once we identify anxiety in our life, we can bring it into the light. 

Satan wants our thoughts to stay hidden so we remain in bondage. 

But, as we bring our struggles into the light, we can receive healing and hope.

As we take a step back and observe our thoughts and feelings, we can state how we feel and what we’re thinking. 

For example, “I feel anxious right now. My heart is beginning to speed up.”

2 – Breathe and Engage

The Spirit of God has made me; the breath of the Almighty gives me life.”  – Job 33:4 NIV

Anxiety can transport us. 

We can be sitting in a quiet room and suddenly feel like we’re walking into an unsettling situation. 

Memories can bombard us. Fear can surround us.

Take a breath when anxiety kicks in. Breathe in and out slowly. 

I look around and concentrate on something I can physically see. 

Or I place my hand on the couch, floor, or chair to feel. I’ll note if the surface is rough, smooth, or soft.

Listen to the sounds in the area. Is the washing machine running? The heat vent blowing?

Engage in the moment and breathe. This focus calms our body and mind.

One practical way to cope with anxiety is to breathe. Click to Tweet
a woman with her head bowed and hands folded in prayer to cope with anxiety

3 – Prayer and Gratitude

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6-7 NIV

I love this verse as a step-by-step guide for how to cope with anxiety.

  • Prayer and petition – We humble ourselves before the Lord.
  • Thanksgiving – Gratitude holds power over our minds. When we are grateful, our eyes are no longer on the struggle but on the blessings before us. 
  • Present your requests – We lay our requests before the Lord, knowing He hears and cares for us. 

We can bring our desires, fears, and hopes to the Lord and lay them at His feet. 

When we do this, God’s peace will guard our hearts and minds.

4 – Surrender

“In all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” – Proverbs 3:6 NIV

Give your burdens to God. Over and over. 

As we seek to know Him in each struggle, we find healing.

Sometimes I record my surrender prayer in a journal. 

Other times, I physically open my hands, palms facing up, and vocalize a prayer to God.

As we seek to know God in each struggle, we find healing. Click to Tweet
a woman with her eyes closed facing the sun and arms stretched out beside her

5 – Replace and Renew 

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” – Romans 12:2 NIV

Our world is filled with brokenness, sin, and pain. 

As Christians, we aren’t conformed to this world’s patterns. 

Instead, we are transformed from brokenness and made new by the renewing of our minds.

By replacing anxious thoughts with Scripture, we can walk in truth.

Find Bible verses that speak into current situations or struggles. 

Speak these Scriptures out loud. Write them down. Memorize them.

In doing so, we will find renewal and peace. 

The Word of God is a powerful tool to help us cope with anxiety.

As we find biblical ways to cope with anxiety, may we embrace the rest, peace, and healing Jesus offers. Click to Tweet

Come to Jesus to Cope with Anxiety 

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”  – Matthew 11:28 NIV

When darkness threatens to consume us, we can turn to the Lord. 

If anxiety becomes too great to manage alone, seek help through counseling. 

As we find biblical ways to cope with anxiety, may we embrace the rest, peace, and healing Jesus offers. 

– Nicole Kauffman

Nicole is a wife and mama to two boys. Between keeping her house free from muddy footprints and plucking weeds from the garden, she shares hope and encouragement to those walking this journey of faith at Courage Hope Love. You can find Nicole on Instagram or with real life tips on YouTube.

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