How to Use the Psalms for Anxiety Relief
Scripture is one of the most powerful ways to overcome anxiety. I’ve tried countless calming exercises, been through counseling, and shared my heart with friends in hopes of finding healing.
But one thing that always helps with bringing immediate peace is going to Scripture. These verses have been such helpful Psalms for anxiety.
Filling your mind with Scripture in a moment of anxiety stops your thoughts in their tracks. There is no room for anxious thoughts when you repeat Scripture over and over again.
It’s not a magic fix and it takes effort. It requires you to take captive your thoughts, to be aware of when anxious thoughts begin to flow through your mind, and to be intentional about replacing those thoughts with Scripture.
I will sometimes even out loud repeat the phrases and use this as my weapon against the attacks of anxiety.
- How to Use the Psalms for Anxiety Relief
- Helpful Psalms for Anxiety
- Psalm 91: He is With Me in Trouble
- Psalm 27: Nothing to Fear
- Psalm 40: He Brings Me Out of the Pit
- Psalm 62: I Will Not Be Shaken
- Psalm 34: Seek the Lord and Take Refuge in Him
- Psalm 143: Revive me, Lord
- Psalm 121: Where My Help Comes From
- Psalm 103: He Has Compassion on Me
- Psalm 23: He is My Shepherd
- Psalm 139: He Knows Me
- Hope from Psalms for Anxiety
Helpful Psalms for Anxiety
Psalm 91: He is With Me in Trouble
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; my God, in whom I trust.” (v 1-2)
To dwell in the most intimate place with the Lord is a powerful call. We aren’t to dwell in our anxiety or fear, but with the Lord. We can trust Him fully. We can take refuge in Him no matter how we feel or what we face.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night. (v 5)
For he will put his angels in charge of you, to guard you in all your ways. (v 11)
He will call on me, and I will answer him. I will be with him in trouble. (v 15)
He is with us in trouble. I love this. We don’t need to fear, especially at night. If you’re anything like my, anxiety can spike in the nighttime hours.
The quiet and stillness can leave my mind uneasy. But it is in these moments that the Lord is with me. His angels are watching over me. Take comfort in this!
Remind Satan that he has no power or authority over you in these moments. And as you learn to surrender to God, you will find powerful peace.
Psalm 27: Nothing to Fear
The Lord is my light and my salvation. Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life. Of whom shall I be afraid? (v 1)
We don’t need to fear anyone or anything because the Almighty Lord is who gives us strength. The one who created the universe and has died to create a way to be with Him, that God is the one who is with us. He shines His consuming light into our moments of darkness.
For in the day of trouble, he will keep me secretly in his pavilion. In the secret place of his tabernacle, he will hide me. He will lift me up on a rock. (v 5)
This is yet again another image of intimacy with the Lord. He hides us under His wings, in His secret place. There is no safer place than where we are right here in this moment.
Wait for the Lord. Be strong, and let your heart take courage. (v 14)
Even when you don’t feel this peace, hang on. These truths are just that, truth! Satan will try to convince you that your feelings are the truth, that you are alone and stuck in your anxiety or fear. But God has told us differently.
Wait for His peace to fill you because He has promised that as we cling to Him, it will.
Psalm 40: He Brings Me Out of the Pit
I waited patiently for the Lord. He turned to me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay. He set my feet on a rock, and gave me a firm place to stand. (v 1-2)
What a beautiful image of how God reaches us in our dark moments. When we are feeling sucked into the pit of anxiety, God turns to us, hears our cry and sets our feet on a rock.
I don’t know about you, but in my anxiety, I feel less than stable. But in Christ, we can stand on solid ground, firmly rooted in peace.
Don’t withhold your tender mercies from me, Lord. Let your loving kindness and your truth continually preserve me. (v 11)
You are my help and my deliverer. Don’t delay, my God. (v 17)
These verses can be a prayer to the Lord in a moment of anxiety.
Psalm 62: I Will Not Be Shaken
My soul rests in God alone. (v1)
No matter what else we do, true rest comes from God alone. Let us seek that rest in Him and nowhere else.
He alone is my rock, my salvation, and my fortress. I will never be greatly shaken. (v2)
He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress. I will not be shaken. (v6)
I love that this verse is repeated! I won’t be shaken because God is my rock and salvation and fortress. He is the one who holds me steady.
Don’t get me wrong, we will feel shaken. We will think we are shaken. But stand in this truth that we won’t be shaken if we stand with God.
My soul, wait in silence for God alone, for my expectation is from him. (v5)
Let this verse wash over you in follow up to the previous verses. Our expectation of hope and peace and healing from anxiety is in God alone. Be still and wait for Him.
Psalm 34: Seek the Lord and Take Refuge in Him
I sought the Lord, and he answered me, and delivered me from all my fears. (v 4)
This is a powerful reminder that when we seek God with all our hearts, He will deliver us unto Him.
The Lord’s angel encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them. (v 7)
Oh taste and see that the Lord is good. Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him (v 8)
The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves those who have a crushed spirit. (v 18)
God is near to you in the midst of your anxiety. Let these verses encourage you and remind you of that as you turn to the Psalms for anxiety relief. God is with you in the dark and difficult moments and in Him you can take refuge.
Psalm 143: Revive me, Lord
Hear my prayer, Lord. Listen to my petitions. In your faithfulness and righteousness, relieve me. (v 1)
For the enemy pursues my soul. He has struck my life down to the ground. He has made me live in dark places, as those who have been long dead. Therefore my spirit is overwhelmed within me. My heart within me is desolate. (v 3-4)
This is such a powerful depiction of what anxiety feels like. Let’s take comfort in that the author of this Psalm knows the pain of feeling struck down, overwhelmed and desolate.
I remember the days of old. I meditate on all your doings. I contemplate the work of your hands. (v 5)
There is powerful renewed hope in meditating on all that God has done. Both in Scripture and in our own lives God has been at work, saving, redeeming, healing, restoring. Take time to reflect and find hope in this.
Cause me to hear your loving kindness in the morning, for I trust in you. Cause me to know the way in which I should walk, for I lift up my soul to you. (v 8)
Revive me, Lord, for your name’s sake. In your righteousness, bring my soul out of trouble. (v 11)
These two verses are powerful prayers that we can speak out in the middle of anxiety.
Psalm 121: Where My Help Comes From
I will lift up my eyes to the hills. Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. (v 1-2)
This is a powerful reminder to look to God for help in times of anxiety. He is the one who can truly help us in our moments of need.
I can’t tell you how often I turn elsewhere for help first. I may pray but then quickly go to the internet or a friend or a book to find help in anxiety.
But our true Help and Healer is the Lord!
The Lord will keep you from all evil. He will keep your soul. (v 7)
I love this. He will keep us from all evil or harm. We may feel attacked and hopeless and yet this is the truth, that God will keep us from evil. He will protect our soul no matter what battle is raging around us.
Psalm 103: He Has Compassion on Me
Praise the Lord, my soul! All that is within me, praise his holy name! (v 1)
When we are praising, anxiety shrinks. Sometimes I feel like praising but many times, especially in moments of anxiety, praising feels like pulling teeth!
But we know that God is good, no matter how we feel. So praise Him in your anxiety and watch Him work.
For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is his loving kindness toward those who fear him. (v 11)
Like a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him. (v 13)
Both of these verses are powerful reminders of how deeply God cares for you and the powerful compassion He has for you.
He is with you in your anxiety. He wants to help you and strengthen you. Take hope in these words.
Psalm 23: He is My Shepherd
I would encourage you to read this entire psalm for moments of anxiety.
Every word is an encouragement to me.
The Lord is my shepherd: I shall lack nothing. (v 1)
Even when I feel like I am lacking, I am not. God supplies all my needs.
He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. (v 2)
He will lead us in quietness and stillness. He provides moments of rest.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me. Your rod and your staff, they comfort me. (v 4)
The rod is for protection and the staff is for guidance. Even in our darkest moments, God is both of these things to us.
Surely goodness and loving kindness shall follow me all the days of my life. (v 6)
Let us seek His goodness and loving kindness in the midst of anxiety and find peace.
Psalm 139: He Knows Me
Lord, you have searched me, and you know me. You know my sitting down and my rising up. You perceive my thoughts from afar. (v 1-2)
Our thoughts, even our anxious ones, are not hidden from the Lord. He knows us.
And we can take comfort in this because as the previous Psalms have reminded us, He has compassion on us and He is our helper.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will overwhelm me. The light around me will be night,” even the darkness doesn’t hide from you, but the night shines as the day. The darkness is like light to you. (v 11-12)
This so accurately depicts how I feel in a moment of anxiety. Feeling like darkness overwhelms. And yet God’s light penetrates even the deepest darkness. In Him, darkness flees.
Search me, God, and know my heart. Try me, and know my thoughts. See if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the everlasting way. (v 23-24)
I love this as a verse to memorize and to meditate on in anxiety.
Sometimes God is sanctifying us in our anxiety. He is drawing out something that needs pruned. He is healing us.
Seek Him in the process.
Hope from Psalms for Anxiety
The Lord sees us. He knows our thoughts.
He has compassion on us and He is our helper.
He protects us and supplies all our needs.
The Lord is good and He is our refuge. In Him, we won’t be shaken.
Let these truths wash over you and guide you in moments of anxiety.