8, 9. What comfort may be drawn from 1 Peter 5:6-11?
8 Peter added: “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time; while you throw all your anxiety upon him, because he cares for you. Keep your senses, be watchful. Your adversary, the Devil, walks about like a roaring lion, seeking to devour someone. But take your stand against him, solid in the faith, knowing that the same things in the way of sufferings are being accomplished in the entire association of your brothers in the world. But, after you have suffered a little while, the God of all undeserved kindness, who called you to his everlasting glory in union with Christ, will himself finish your training, he will make you firm, he will make you strong. To him be the might forever. Amen.”—1 Peter 5:6-11.
10. First Peter 5:6, 7 alludes to what three qualities that can help to allay anxiety?
10 First Peter 5:6, 7 alludes to three qualities that can help us to cope with anxiety. One is humility, or “lowliness of mind.” 1Pe 5 Verse 6 ends with the expression “in due time,” suggesting a need for patience. 1Pe 5 Verse 7 shows that we can confidently throw all our anxiety upon God ‘because he cares for us,’ and those words encourage implicit trust in Jehovah. So let us see how humility, patience, and implicit trust in God can help to allay anxiety.
How Humility Can Help
11. How may humility help us to cope with anxiety?
11 If we are humble, we will admit that God’s thoughts are vastly superior to our own. (Isaiah 55:8, 9) Humility helps us to recognize our limited mental range in comparison with Jehovah’s all-encompassing perspective. He sees things we do not discern, as shown in the case of the righteous man Job. (Job 1:7-12; 2:1-6) By humbling ourselves “under the mighty hand of God,” we are acknowledging our lowly position in relation to the Supreme Sovereign. In turn, this helps us to cope with circumstances he permits. Our hearts may yearn for immediate relief, but since Jehovah’s qualities are in perfect balance, he knows precisely when and how to act in our behalf. Like young children, then, let us humbly hold on to Jehovah’s mighty hand, confident that he will help us to cope with our anxieties.—Isaiah 41:8-13.
12. How might anxiety about material security be affected if we humbly apply the words of Hebrews 13:5?
12 Humility includes willingness to apply counsel from God’s Word, which can often lessen anxiety. For example, if our anxiety has resulted from deep involvement in material pursuits, we might well reflect on Paul’s counsel: “Let your manner of life be free of the love of money, while you are content with the present things. For [God] has said: ‘I will by no means leave you nor by any means forsake you.’” (Hebrews 13:5) By humbly applying such counsel, many have freed themselves of great anxiety about material security. While their financial condition may not have improved, it does not dominate their thoughts to their spiritual detriment.
The Role of Patience
13, 14. (a) As to patient endurance, what example did the man Job provide? (b) Patiently waiting on Jehovah can do what for us?
13 The expression “in due time” at 1 Peter 5:6 suggests the need for patient endurance. Sometimes a problem persists for a long time, and that can heighten anxiety. Especially then do we need to leave matters in Jehovah’s hands. The disciple James wrote: “We pronounce happy those who have endured. You have heard of the endurance of Job and have seen the outcome Jehovah gave, that Jehovah is very tender in affection and merciful.” (James 5:11) Job experienced economic ruin, lost ten children in death, suffered from a loathsome disease, and was wrongly condemned by false comforters. At least some anxiety would be normal under such circumstances.
14 At any rate, Job was exemplary in patient endurance. If we are undergoing a severe test of faith, we may have to wait for relief, even as he did. But God did act in his behalf, eventually relieving Job of his suffering and rewarding him abundantly. (Job 42:10-17) Patiently waiting on Jehovah develops our endurance and reveals the depth of our devotion to him.—James 1:2-4.