9 Songs That Will Draw You Closer to God When You're Feeling Anxious
By Cole Douglas Claybourn, Crosswalk.com
Feelings of anxiousness can creep up at any moment, often without any warning.
A number of circumstances can trigger those feelings, and for some people, they might be more constant.
For Christians, resting in the truth of God’s Word can bring comfort. Listening to worship songs can also help bring a sense of calm and reassurance.
It ultimately comes down to surrendering our feelings to God and giving Him control of our hearts to calm the storm inside. Philippians 4:6 tells us: “do not worry about anything. Instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.”
Listening to worship music can be a great way to position your heart with a posture of surrender.
Here are nine worship songs to listen to when you are feeling anxious:
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1. “Run to the Father” — Cody Carnes
The song opens with a line that will resonate with anyone feeling anxious:
“I’ve carried a burden for too long on my own.”
Right away, the lyrics offer comfort in the next line.
“I wasn’t created to bear it alone.”
Anxiety typically signals feelings of unease or uncertainty about something. It is a longing for comfort. There is no greater comfort than that of the love of God. There is no better reassurance than being in the arms of the Father.
This song is about surrender. It’s about giving up the worries and placing them at the foot of the cross and in the hands of the Father.
Rarely do we feel a grasp of the situation when in the midst of anxiety. This song provides a simple, yet profound, truth that addresses these feelings as well.
I don't understand
I can't comprehend
All I know is I need You
So, we run to the Father again, and again, and again, and again. When the feelings creep in, give them to God every time.
2. “It Is Well” — Bethel Music & Kristene Dimarco
“It is well with my soul,” this song reminds us, over and over again.
When our soul feels more like wrestling waves in the midst of a storm, these lyrics remind us that in the same way God called the waves to be still, he can do the same in our hearts.
The imagery of these lyrics is poetic and powerful.
And this mountain that's in front of me
Will be thrown into the midst of the sea
Imagine God taking the mountain of worry built up in your mind and literally throwing it into the deepest parts of the ocean.
This song reminds us that through it all — through whatever is causing feelings of anxiety — we should fix our eyes on God.
So let go my soul and trust in Him
The waves and wind still know His name
Like the waves of the ocean, the ones in your soul will be calmed when you give your worries to God.
Photo Credit: ©GettyImages/leolintang
Source: Cody Carnes
3. “Out of My Hands” — Jeremy Camp
The chorus says it all:
So, when it feels like all of this pain is never gonna end
Brought to my knees by all of these things
I don't understand, don't understand
I will let the weight of my fear fall like sand
Out of my hands and into Yours
Out of my hands and into Yours
The song paints an image of someone with outstretched hands, literally letting the weight of the fear and worries fall into the hands of God like tiny pieces of sand. Think about how many tiny pieces of sand are actually in one handful — far too many to count.
Sometimes anxiety can feel like that’s how many things are weighing on our hearts. No matter how much is in our hand, God is ready to take it all.
There’s something poetic and beautiful about the simplicity and fragility of flakes of sand falling through our fingertips and slipping out of grasp and into the hand of someone who can adequately bare it all.
The entire song is all about letting go of worries and trusting God with them. It reassures us that even when we don’t understand something that’s happening, we can rest in the reassurance that God is always faithful.
4. “Waiting Here For You” — Christy Nockels
We are not a society that likes to wait. We send a text message and often get an immediate response. We post to social media and feel a rush of dopamine when interaction immediately filters through.
Even our dining habits reinforce our insatiable need for instant gratification. Many people rely on fast food for their meals and waiting more than a few minutes for food or a coffee can stir a bit of irritation.
This translates to when we have to wait on God to answer a prayer. We are not comfortable waiting, and the uncertainty in the waiting often breeds feelings of anxiety. Genesis 8:22 tells us to find contentment in the waiting: “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.”
“Waiting Here For You” by Christy Nockels is a song of surrender that calls us to give all of those anxious feelings to God.
The chorus goes like this:
Waiting here for You
With our hands lifted high in praise
And it's You we adore
Ultimately, it’s a song of release that invites us to let go of the chains holding us down to experience the freedom of Christ.
Photo Credit: Unsplash/Milada Vigerova
Source: Jeremy Camp
5. “Yes I Will” — Vertical Worship
This is a powerful song because the lyrics empower the listener to take a bold, attacking approach to feelings of anxiety, worry, or hurt. It calls us to adamantly declare that the Lord is bigger than whatever is weighing us down — whether that’s uncertainty in the waiting, walking in a season that feels like a valley, or experiencing a season of hurt.
It reminds us that God is never late, and even when we can’t see it, He’s working all things out.
Yes I will, lift You high in the lowest valley
Yes I will, bless Your name
Oh, yes I will, sing for joy when my heart is heavy
All my days, oh yes I will
6. “You Are With Me” — Ryan Ahlwardt
Perhaps a less widely known song, this song was literally written in the midst of a season of anxiety. Ryan Ahlwardt was previously a member of the popular a cappella group “Straight No Chaser” and he wrote this song based on what he felt he was hearing from God when he felt called to leave the group to work for a ministry in his hometown.
The anxiety of telling the nine other members in the group was weighing on him, but a simple message he kept hearing from God — “I am with you” — was too clear to ignore.
“I will not fear, for You are with me,” is the simple, yet profound, prevailing message of the song.
There’s also comfort in this verse:
When the darkness closes in
And the weight of everything
Pulls me down to fathom deep
Up to you alone I reach
7. “Lord, I Need You” — Passion & Chris Tomlin
One of the most recognizable and widely sung worship songs, “Lord, I Need You” is another simple, yet declarative, song.
It’s a song of comfort. It’s choosing God over anything this world offers and anything that is causing anxiety.
“Where You are, Lord I am free.”
Every hour, we need Him.
Photo Credit: ©SparrowStock/David Clark
Source: Vertical Worship
8. “Goodness of God” — Bethel Music
It’s difficult to view something like anxiety as “good,” but we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28).
We are not called to understand everything. Rather, we are called to be faithful through everything. We trust that through it all, God is faithful to us.
We are promised that there will be seasons that will try us in the fire. Those seasons refine us, and the pressure produces something great.
As this song shows, we never stay in the fire. We are led through the fire. God is always with us.
I love Your voice
You have led me through the fire
In the darkest night
You are close like no other
I've known You as a Father
I've known You as a Friend
And I have lived in the goodness of God
And all my life You have been faithful
And all my life You have been so, so good
With every breath that I am able
Oh, I will sing of the goodness of God
9. “Battle Belongs” — Phil Wickham
The title says it all. Whatever battle you are facing, whatever struggles surround you, whatever heartache you are feeling...it all belongs to God.
It’s another song of surrender. While the world might think the way to fight a battle is through our own strength, the lyrics show how our strength actually comes when surrendering — on our knees, submitting our worries to God.
What seems like a battle for us is a chance for us to see victory in Christ.
So when I fight, I'll fight on my knees
With my hands lifted high
Oh God, the battle belongs to You
And every fear I lay at Your feet
I'll sing through the night
Oh God, the battle belongs to You
Nothing can replace spending time in prayer and studying the Word of God when dealing with anxiety. But worship music can help people connect with Scripture and Biblical truth in a unique way.
Make a playlist that you can go to in the midst of anxious seasons. Start with these songs and rest in the truth that the lyrics speak.
Photo Credit: ©Unsplash/Ben White
Source: Bethel Music