Vacationing on a sunny Cancun beach in the winter of 2011, while leisurely sipping on a fruity drink, an intense feeling struck me— “I need to get out of here now!” I dropped my daily-dose-of-gossip magazine and paced the pool deck. Instead of feeling better I became short of breath and my heart pounded. As I found it harder and harder to breathe. I had no clue what was wrong. By the time I reached my room I felt confused, disoriented, and scared. My stomach hurt, too—pain that left me undecided if I needed to throw up or . . . well, you know. I did both. Afterward I walked out of my room and paced the hotel floors for a little relief. As I made my rounds the same question repeated in my mind, “What is wrong with me?”
Have you asked yourself that same question before, “What is wrong with me?” In a building, smoke alarms are warning signals that indicate something isn’t right. The same is true for our bodies. God has designed it so perfectly that we should yield to smoke alarms indicating that something isn’t right. My smoke alarms were:
● Fast heartbeat
● Chest or stomach pain
● Breathing difficulty
● Weakness or dizziness
● Feeling hot or a cold chill
● Tingly or numb hands
God’s Word says, “Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body” (1 Corinthians 6: 19-20). Since the Holy Spirit lives inside you, He knows when something isn’t operating the way He designed it. It is wise to pay close attention to the smoke alarms of anxiety.
Today is the day you stop ignoring smoke alarms. Take a moment to journal any smoke alarms you are experiencing. Be honest with yourself, there is freedom on the other side.
Father, you bought me at a high price. My body does not belong to me but to you. Help me to care for it the way that you would want me to. I want to honor you in all that I do, including not ignoring any smoke alarms. I ask for your guidance right now to reveal to me any areas that I am ignoring. Thank you for the power of the Holy Spirit that lives inside of me, leading and guiding me, in Jesus' name, Amen.