Do you have “stress” in your life? This seems to be a topic that comes up every day and impacts all of us as moms, dads, workers and leaders in our professions. The most common areas where we experience stress are health, finances, relationships, and our job. Maybe you have received a recent diagnosis that is unsettling and may even put your life in jeopardy. Maybe you find yourself every month with more month than money and don’t see a way out. We put great value in our relationships with our spouse, children, family, friends, and co-workers. We often find ourselves in conflict with these relationships that leave us empty, bitter, angry, hurt and stressed. Our jobs and careers often put demands on us that conflict with our priorities, the work can be too much, or we find ourselves being passed over or in a circumstance where our career is not going where we hoped. These are a few examples of the stress we all face. Some are great and some are small, but all of us work to manage these areas.
We all like to be in control of all the areas of our life. Unfortunately, despite all our efforts, circumstances change to a point that cause discomfort or anxiety and we feel a tension that we call stress. A tension between what we desire and where we are. A tension between what we expect and what is reality. Stress is defined in the dictionary as: Stress noun. a physical, chemical, or emotional factor that causes bodily or mental tension and may be a factor in disease causation
When I find that I am being overwhelmed by stress it is because I am trying to manage the stress on my own when many of the circumstances are outside of my control. We tend to put our trust in our own ability to manage all the areas of our life. I have found myself in a pattern that goes from managed stress and trust in self to unmanageable stress, surrender and trust in God. This pattern tends to be repeated as circumstances come back into control. I am always happy to take back the control when my circumstances pass. Why would I rather trust in self than in God? Why do I have more confidence when I am in control than putting my confidence and trust in God? Isaiah encourages us that we serve a BIG God in Isaiah 40:12-14 “Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand, and marked off the heavens by the span, and calculated the dust of the earth by the measure, and weighted the mountains in a balance and the hills in a pair of scales? Who has directed the Spirit of the Lord, or as His counselor has informed Him? With whom did He consult and who gave Him understanding? And who taught Him in the path of justice and taught Him knowledge and informed Him of the way of understanding? Am I crazy? Why would I not want to always trust Him with all areas of my life? Do your problems seem too big? Why would you not give them over to Him? God has given us His word as the instruction and authority as to how we are to live our lives. II Timothy 3:16 – 17 “All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” God’s word “equips us” and tells us what to do. He promises us that if we seek Him that we will find Him. If we obey His word as the instruction and authority to how we are to live our lives I believe we will be much better off than following our desires and intuition.
When life gives you more than you can handle remember we serve a BIG God, He has given us His word as the instruction and authority to follow and He loves you.
Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.”