Question:

Hi,

I've been reading through a lot of these questions and answers looking for some guidance, but I continue to feel a little lost. I've always struggled with anxiety, and though when I pray to God asking Him to forgive me, guide me, and tell Him that I have faith in Him and all that He does, I feel safe. I feel like He hears me and I can feel Him in my heart.

Yet when I want to learn about something or I just had a curiosity for something in the Bible that I can't seem to find an answer to, I seek guidance from sites such as these, and always leave feeling worried and anxious and ashamed and scared that I've done something unforgivable. I know that I've sinned, and I feel confident that God has forgiven me and that I want to live my life pleasing Him, but I know that I am not all knowledgeable yet. Admittedly, sometimes I allow myself continue to do something when I'm unsure about how God feels about it, and that's wrong, so I'm working to change that.

But for the things I just don't understand yet, or didn't understand but stopped immediately when I realized they were against God's wishes, is that forgivable? Is that negligence? I don't want to "get away" with sinning just because I didn't know. I want to understand, but I think it takes more time than that. But then I read about how negligence is a sin, and I feel as though I should be afraid of God when people say those things, although I know He loves me.

I may just be anxiously analyzing everything, but sometimes I feel that I cannot hear God as strongly as usual, and I worry that I've done something wrong, so I apologize and beg for forgiveness because I want more than anything to please Him, and I'm so grateful that He loves me, but at times I feel a though I'm just not doing it "right."

I appreciate any feedback! Thanks.


Answer:

"So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Romans 10:17).

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the LORD and depart from evil" (Proverbs 3:5-7).

"Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, "I know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked" (I John 2:3-6).

"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy -- meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you" (Philippians 4:6-9).

Underneath anxiety and worry is a lack of faith in the true God. You see yourself as being fine while you lean upon your own understanding of God, but when you are challenged to look into God's Word for what God actually teaches, you become anxious. Therefore, your faith is not built upon a knowledge of the true God, but your perception of who you expect your God to be like. Conflicts between those two views makes you anxious.