‘And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his
span of life?’ Matthew 6:27
We all know that anxiety is useless, it achieves nothing, but it seems that we have created a way of life, which drenches us in anxiety. The early Christians certainly knew what it was to live with anxiety: they faced the daily threat of imprisonment, torture and execution, but in some ways their anxiety was more straightforward, easier to manage. We may no longer face the daily threat of violence but we are assailed by a legion of anxieties: our screens shout anxieties at us; our work makes us anxious; our school makes us anxious; our striving for the endless acquisition of things makes us anxious. Anxiety eats away at us; it knots our bodies and poisons our dealings with others. It is our constant companion; it lies with us in our beds at night and chants in our ear. It seems that there is no escape, it seems that anxiety is in the air we breathe and so we seek to drown it
out, with drink, with drugs, with whatever distractions we can find. Is there no escape?