As we are in the month where we celebrate our nation’s independence, I wanted to share some thoughts on how you can celebrate independence from life’s stress. First, let me define what I mean by STRESS:
ENTRUSTING to the
We seem inundated with a flurry of activity that results in worries about having enough time and whether the outcome will be the result we anticipated. All too often men become reliant upon their own abilities to manage these situations and suddenly we are feeling the symptoms of our separation from the real solution to the issues we face. Whether physical, emotional, spiritual or a combination of these, we begin to suffer the affects of not being a FROG (Fully Relying on God). Let’s take a look at what God’s Word says regarding these circumstances.
There are many names for God that are translated to describe the various characteristics He displays. One such name is Jehovah-shalom or The LORD our peace. Hebrews 13:20 and 21 tells us “May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing His will, and may He work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.” So one way for us to manage STRESS is to remember that our Heavenly Father wants to equip us with everything good for doing His will and when we allow Him to work in our lives, the results are pleasing to Him. Philippians 4:6 and 7 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.” If we want to experience the peace of God then we have to present everything to Him through our prayer relationship with Him and if we do not, then we find ourselves facing STRESS. This passage tells us that there is no greater answer than this because the peace of God “transcends all understanding.” We must protect our hearts and minds from the deception of satan and the best protection we can have is this close relationship with our Heavenly Father.
It is so amazing that God knows us so well that He is keenly aware of how susceptible we are to the mind games that satan plays. Matthew 6: 31-33 states “So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your Heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” So to avoid STRESS we must look to Jehovah-tsidkenu, TheLORD our righteousness, and serve His kingdom above all else and He will take care of the rest. We find ourselves in major STRESS when we think we can be a better provider than God can. Philippians 4:19 states” And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” This is not to be confused to mean God will give us anything we want but should be understood to mean that God has already given us the ultimate riches that are gained through our personal relationship with Jesus Christ. It is when we rely on these riches that we avoid STRESS.
2 Samuel 22:2 and 3 tells us “He said: ‘The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation. He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior…” In this passage the word “rock” refers to the source of our protection. The “horn of my salvation” is interpreted to mean the strength of my salvation. The Lord is the source of our protection and the strength of our salvation and when we rely upon these promises then we are capable of a “STRESS” free life. Remember, we cannot control the circumstances of life but we can control how we react to those circumstances. When we call upon the rock, the fortress, our deliverer, our refuge, our shield, and the horn of our salvation we have the absolute best STRESS management tool known to mankind!