Stress is Stressful

BIBLE READING: Phil. 1:20 - 24 20 For I fully expect and hope that I will never be ashamed, but that I will continue to be bold for Christ, as I have been in the past. And I trust that my life will bring honor to Christ, whether I live or die. 21 For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better. 22 But if I live, I can do more fruitful work for Christ. So I really don't know which is better. 23 I'm torn between two desires: I long to go and be with Christ, which would be far better for me. 24 But for your sakes, it is better that I continue to live. (NLT)

BLOG:  Stress is stressful - Duh!  

There is a mountain of research that proves stress is terrible for your health.  

According to the American Institute of Stress here are some of the physical symptoms people experience: Fatigue 51 % - Headache 44 % - Upset stomach 34 % - Muscle tension 30 %
Change in appetite 23 % - Teeth grinding 17 % - Feeling dizzy 13 %

So let's cut to the chase. You're stressed.  But why? 

Stress is your body's way of responding to any kind of demand or threat - real or imagined.  If you feel fear, your brain kicks in your body's defense system, and you react.  The problem is, when that happens, it also shuts down the part of your brain that makes good decisions.  

There are things in your life called stressors.  These are triggers to stress.  It could be meeting new people.  Taking a test or looking at your bank account.  Different people have different stressors.  What stresses out one person may not affect another.  

So what do you do with your stress? 

1 Peter 5:7 casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.

Let me explain what this isn't.  It isn't you going to God say, "Here are my problems, fix them." Then stand back and do nothing.  

No, you are part of the solution. 

First, admit that you have stress.  If you do, you are in good company.  70% of Americans are experiencing stress right now.

Secondly, Pray and give to God what it is that is stressing you out.  In doing so, you make God your God and destroy the opportunity for your fears and stresses to become an idol. 

Thirdly, ask God what to do?  Take the time to worship (which relieves stress) and listen to the Holy Spirit.  God has answers. 

Fourthly, ask people to help you.  No this isn't embarrassing, it's wisdom — recruit encouragers who will help you overcome your stress and fears.  

Fifthly, face your fears.  Often, the very thing that stresses you isn't as bad as you made it in your mind.  Ask God to give you a new heart and mind that sees your life from His point of view, not yours.  

PRAY:  Dear Jesus, I'm stressed out.  Speak to me and help me.  AMEN