Showing posts with the label Stress

Too proud to accept it?

But as for me, I will sing about your power. Each morning I will sing with joy about your unfailing love. For you have been my refuge, a place of safety when I am in distress. (Psalm 59:16) Where do you turn when you are in distress? Do you veg out in front of the TV, streaming this or that in the hopes you can take your mind off whatever is causing all the stress? Do you head to the fridge or scour the cupboards to find another snack? Do you go online to buy one more thing you really won't use all that much? What we do in our times of stress and where it is we turn when we need to 'destress' is very important for us to recognize. It could show us just how much we depend upon what 'we' can do rather than what God wants to do. Things will always be there that give us great pain, anxiety, or sorrow. It is part of life to deal with this kind of stuff. The acute physical or mental anguish the stressful thing causes isn't meant to be dealt with on our own, though. W

The Lord is for me (and you, too)

Let all who fear the Lord repeat: “His faithful love endures forever.” In my distress I prayed to the Lord, and the Lord answered me and set me free. The Lord is for me, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me? (Psalm 118:4-6) The more we interact with people around us, the more we realize it is almost impossible to please everyone. There will always be someone in the group who thinks differently, opposing every move we make. What do we do when we face opposition? If you are like me, you get a little distressed by the resistance at times. You might want to just pull in like a snail inside its shell, but that doesn't solve the issue, does it? I have learned to take my distress to the only one who can 'de-stress' it - God. I bring the issue to him, but I also bring the 'players' in the issue - including me! There are times when my attitude is the one needing adjustment, while it is the attitude of others that needs it at others. Who am I to judge whi

Driven toward truth

As pressure and stress bear down on me, I find joy in your commands. (Psalm 119:143)  The late Walt Disney said, "It is kind of fun to do the impossible." With God, much of what we see as impossible is really not, but that doesn't minimize the fact that the impossible comes with its own stress and pressure. There is a certain 'stress' within faith - trust requires stepping outside of our comfort zone from time to time. When we do, the pressure that can bear down on us can almost overwhelm us. This is why we must press into our relationship with Jesus even harder during these times.  Someone once told me to enjoy that stress and feel that pressure. Why? It meant I was going to see God work within my life in ways I had never experienced before. So, I took that advice and actually took a different attitude toward all that pressure as the 'impossible' closed in around me. Do you know what happened? Before long, the 'attitude' I had assumed actually beg

Sit back and marvel

  Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good. (Romans 8:28) There have been moments when I just didn't know what to say to God - unsure of what really was going on inside of my mind and emotions, just needing to get out those feelings, but really not sure how to put them into words. How about you? Do you ever experience those moments when there is an overwhelming sense of heaviness within, but you cannot really express it in words? I am so glad God can understand our sighs, groans, and even our silence. He knows our heart better than we do, but he also understands

Settled, Sure, and Sane

Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. (Philippians 4:6-7) When we are presented with alternatives, we are being given a choice. If you have ever gone into a restaurant with pages and pages of menu items, bound together in a spiral bound book of sorts, you probably have been so frustrated by all the choices you just chose your old "stand by" because you couldn't read through them all before the waitress returned! When the choices are many, the anxiety associated with making the "right" choice is significantly higher than when the choices are simply this or that. At least we stand a 50/50 chance of getting our choice right with the latter example, but with the spiral-

Headed into stress

God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it . Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you. (Romans 12:1-2) The way we think is the determining factor in how we perceive the circumstance in front of us right now. In changing the 'way' we think, we can be transformed. When we ask God, he tends to give us a different perspective than we've been seeing through our own eyes. There are some of us who go through life just feeling like 'come what may', we ar

Be a gift giver

There are times when I come into my office to find a bottle of my favorite soda, or a small snack that will help me make it through a long day. They aren't 'expensive' items, but they mean the world to me. Have you ever just left a small gift on someone's desk while they were out of the office - no note, no explanation, just something which might bless them on a day when nothing seems to be going right for them? What happens in the moment the person notices the gift upon their return? They ponder it, don't they? It gives them "cause to pause". There is this period of time between the "shock" of receiving the gift and the moment their curiosity causes them to ask, "Hey, who put this here?" For just a brief period of time, they stop focusing on the issues which made them so irritable in the first place, don't they? A quietly given gift soothes an irritable person; a heartfelt present cools a hot temper. (Proverbs 21:14) Hav

My favorite shorts

One of my most comfortable pair of 'knock about the house' shorts has developed a stress tear at a very 'not so easy to fix' location. I will attempt to fix it, but a stress tear is kind of hard to fix because it follows the path knit in the shorts and it isn't parallel to the seam! So, try as I might, these may be 'beyond fixing' in the long run. Try as we might, we can attempt to bring the frayed edges of the tears in our lives known as "stress tears" together without the tear being noticed, but it is almost impossible. Things just don't match up and if we simply join at the point of 'stress', the surrounding fabric of our lives has also been weakened, so that patch is not going to last long either. “Besides, who would patch old clothing with new cloth? For the new patch would shrink and rip away from the old cloth, leaving an even bigger tear than before. And no one puts new wine into old wine skins. For the old skins would burst f

Making it

You know that I believe in the best "control" in our lives as the transition of control - giving control to the one who is able to manage our lives the best - God. "Losing what is dear to us" really doesn't excite any of us because it wouldn't be 'dear' to us unless we wanted to keep in near! It is in loss that we understand the need for comfort and most of us would rather bypass the loss part entirely. It is also in loss that we connect with that which is most important to us - because sometimes it takes loss to help us see very clearly how much importance something has in our lives. There is just something about loss - physical, emotional, financial, or relational - that causes us to look at our lives again and evaluate where we are now that the loss has occurred. We become "evaluators" of where we have been, what we have done, and the cost that we have paid for where we find ourselves today. "You're blessed when you feel you'

Stressed, but not stressed out

Trust   in   the   Lord  with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will  in  all you do, and he will show you which path to take.   (Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT) Stress is something we have in life, but we don't have to be stressed.  (Chad Moore, Pastor Sun Valley Community Church) What stresses you out the most? What causes you to "be stressed"? When you stop to think about it, stress isn't really a bad thing. I have my favorite stretch plastic wrap that clings really well to the sides of the dish so I can create a tight seal when I need to keep in the freshness or preserve the moisture in some food. It isn't one of the name brands, but I love it nonetheless. What gives it the cling is really the response it has to the "stress" I exert upon it. The pulling of it tight against the sides of the dish until it creates a "drum-like" appearance is what makes this cling really solid. The stress is actually helping the wr

Stress or Calm - It is all in the "now" we choose

I often see things on my social media feed which catch my attention. Some make me laugh, like the cats cavorting with each other, or the dog chasing his tail incessantly. Others make me cry, like the stories of hurting women sold into sex trafficking, or those of families losing everything to an overnight fire which ravaged their home. Every now and again, someone posts something which gives me seconds to pause and then to explore the scripture - simply because the words speak deeply to my spirit. One such post happened this morning. It read: Stress makes you believe that everything has to happen right now, faith reassures you that everything will happen in God's timing! (posted from  Read that again, will you - you might just discover something of truth in that so rich it leaves you pondering, as well.  Stress is that force exerted in your life which either pulls you or pushes you with such strength it is almost impossible to resist.  It works against ration

God, I'm making a fly-by!

When we are presented with alternatives to things the purpose is to give us a choice.  We can have peanut butter and jelly, peanut butter and honey, or just peanut butter - based on our "mood" of the day, we choose what comes closest to our desired sandwich.  Alternatives are just a lot of choices.  If you have ever gone into a restaurant with pages and pages of menu items, bound together in a spiral bound book of sorts, you probably have been so frustrated by all the choices you just chose your old "stand by" because you couldn't decide fast enough!  When in doubt, it's a hamburger for me!  The problem with "too many" choices is the increased anxiety a multitude of choices actually affords.   Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down.

Stressed to the max?

The way we think is often the determining factor in how we perceive a circumstance.  In changing the way we think, we can be transformed.  If you haven't realized it yet, God tends to give us a different perspective than we'd see on our own.  There are some of us who go through life just feeling like come what may, we are stuck with it - there just isn't anything else we could have done about it.  This could not be farther from the truth!  We don't live by some "chance" encounter or outcome.  We live by faith - but faith is based is based on a firmer foundation than kismet.  Sometimes we live with a whole lot more stress in our lives than we really need to - simply because we think stress comes from outside of us.  The truth is, stress is something INSIDE of us - it comes from the way we think and the choices we make as a result of our thinking.  One of the easiest ways to get out from under the pressure of stress is to "reframe" your thinking. So

Being carried away by currents of stress?

Ever "feel" like you just cannot get a handle on things and like the whole world is just spinning out of control?  We all have these days, but a lifestyle of this type of "feeling" will absolutely undo the strongest person!  We can receive all kinds of input all day long - what we do with the input and how we allow it to affect us determines if we will live in peace, or fall to pieces.  If you stop long enough, you might just begin to realize there is a link between peace of mind and stress.  The more physical, mental, or emotional strain we put ourselves under, the more we begin to feel a little tension in our lives. The more tension we begin to "feel" without "processing" it correctly, the greater the chances are it will affect our peace. A sound mind makes for a robust body,  but runaway emotions corrode the bones.  (Proverbs 14:30 MSG) Look at the link between a sound mind and a healthy, flourishing body.  The more stress we accumulate wi