According to the Department of Health and Human Services, 43 percent of adults suffer adverse health effects from stress.
No wonder the newsstands are lined with magazines that include articles on managing stress! These emphasize that eating well, getting adequate rest, exercising regularly, and maintaining friendships are all essential to coping with stress.
King David recognized that the greatest stress buster is a loving relationship with a sovereign God. In Psalm 37, he gives us this advice: “Trust in the Lord ... Delight yourself in the Lord ... Commit your way to the Lord ... Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret ...” (vv. 3–7).
God understands our tendency to be worried and stressed about our lives. He extends His great compassion and mercy to us when we’re burdened by life’s demands. Philippians 4:6 says,
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Reading God’s Word for even ten or fifteen minutes at the beginning of a busy day helps me put everything in the right perspective. I’m reminded of what’s important to God — my character and my trust in Him — not what’s important to me.
My mind will revert back to worry unless I am persistently praying. At the beginning of the day, I like to tell God about every activity and important relationship. As the day goes on, every time I start to be concerned about something, I cast my cares upon God.
Begin each day by reading His Word and by praying. God didn’t intend for you to be ineffective due to worrying. He wants to use you, and He wants you to experience His peace as you walk closely with Him.
- FC&A Staff Writer