Today's society is caught up with so much noise and confusion. The day to day pressures and stress of life have a profound affect on our families, friends, employment as well as our church. Our music is loud and thunderous. Our entertainment is explosive and sometimes destructive.
Many have attempted to deal with this stress through various means including drugs, alcohol and even suicide. Many have resorted to psychologists, psychiatrists and even hypnosis. We've taken out our frustrations on our loved ones by means of physical and mental abuse. Stress is tearing us up from the inside out. How do we, as Christians, cope with stress?
One of the first things we can do is change our way of thinking. We should concentrate on things that have a calming affect. God has provided us, through nature, a built in calming influence. The hills, the valleys, the streams all can provide us with a means of relaxation. Listening to good soothing music, or for many, it's the hymns of the church or praise and worship music that brings relief from stress.
Many Christians suffer from stress because they struggle with inevitable conditions. You know, there are some things in life we have absolutely no control over. There's nothing we can do to change the circumstances so why not change our outlook on them? Jesus conquered stress because He didn't fret about the difficult situations He encountered. Jesus rolled with the punches. He simply turned impossibilities into opportunities. How different from ours His outlook was. We should attempt to do likewise. Sometimes we must accept situations that we are powerless to change, doing our best with what we have and simply leave the rest to God.
Too often, we fail to comfort and encourage others as we should. We get so wrapped up in our own selfish interests. We get to feeling sorry for ourselves. Jesus cared about the difficulties of others. He had compassion for others. He healed the sick, gave sight to the blink, unstopped deaf ears. Jesus made time for others who were in need. We, too, should assist others in their time of need and difficulty. Often comforting others and offering encouragement to others who have problems will resolve our own complaints.
Folks, if we, as Christians, are to overcome stress in our lives we should be aware of God's presence in our lives at all times. Even though we don't always feel His presence, we know through faith He is always near. We are able to put our trust in God because He is not a fair-weathered Friend. The psalmist wrote in Psalm 46:1 God is our Refuge and Strength, a very present Help in trouble. We ought to take Him at His word! Let's stand on the promises of God and over come this victory-stealing enemy we all face from time to time - stress.
Until next time...enjoy the journey!
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