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Pray. Then Schedule the Appointment.

As a pastor for nearly 25 years (see also: Why I Am So Tired). I've heard these statements

"I've prayed! Why do they still have anxiety!"
"I am tired of praying."
"Is God listening at all?"
"Why won't God take this away?"

There is a fallacy that exists in the world of church and Christianity, and this is it: If I act my best, pray really hard, God will remove this anxiety from me. And yes, God answers prayers. Yet, I am here to offer an additional part of the solution.

Jesus walked around with his personal physician, Luke, which he never needed, but possibly Matthew or Mark did? So yes to continued prayer and yes to following the medical advice of your doctor. If your doctor is named Luke, you get two bonus points.

For some people, anxiety is intertwined in DNA. I had an Uncle who had two heart attacks. I never knew this until I had one. My DNA, and had I known this, I likely would have altered some things, predisposed me to heart disease. I've never been overweight or had high blood pressure. Never smoked a day in my life. All indicators for my heart issues were unseen. I was running the day I had a heart attack. I have always been active. But, if I knew this DNA info, I would've maybe seen a cardiologist or two along the way. Or at the very least checked the heart disease box on the medical questionnaire.

This is why doctors make a Family History in an evaluation. It is a predictor of your health. I needed a stent, I actually have two, and now I'm good to go, although a few more and I'm Iron Man. Imagine if I said, 'Nah, I'm good. Leave that artery 80% clogged. I'm sure it will clear up as I sit here eating more lard'. Disclaimer: I'm not a lard eater.

In the same way, we see heart disease, we need to see anxiety. I needed two stents and a temporary statin. But, every day, I take an aspirin. The doctor said I will take it for the rest of my life. If your doctor recommends a temporary pharmaceutical so that dealing with anxiety can be minimized as your child learns the skills required to live healthier without it, be open to this being an answered prayer. Every doctor and psychiatrist's goal, I know, always uses the medicine as a last resort and sees it as a short-term prescription.

Pray without ceasing, but it's okay to also trust that part of the answer to those prayers is to follow a doctor and psychiatrist's professional advice.

Have you taken your child to a physician yet?

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