Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. --John 14:27
All of us experience undue stress. Stress is that subtle, yet building, pressure that robs us of our well-being, peaceful state of mind, and sometimes our health. How many times have you thought to yourself, "I've got too much to do and too little time to do it!"?
Stress affects us all, although it may seem that some have developed immunity to it. In reality they have simply learned how to handle it successfully. It should be our goal to learn to control the stress we face. If we don't, then our bodies are likely to experience changes. Stress affects the brain, the gastrointestinal tract, the skin, your sleep habits, your immune system, and most importantly, your spiritual life.
Everyone feels the pressures of life, whether they want to or not. But you don't have to live life as though you've been hit by an 18-wheeler when you lay your head on your pillow every night. To rid your life of stress, claim the promises of Scripture. The Bible says, "You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you" (Isaiah 26:3).
In addition, you'll want to refrain from telling yourself you shouldn't be relaxing when you finally get the chance to do so. Size down your responsibilities and just say no when you begin to feel an incredible amount of stress. Create some quiet time—possibly even in a very quiet place—to read Scripture, pray, get alone with God, and write out your feelings. And most importantly, plan some quality for yourself—alone.
PRAYER CHALLENGE: If you are feeling extreme stress in your life, ask God to help you relieve it and rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul.
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