I have always appreciated how Charles Stanley describes stress, “the tangible partner of progress.” The more demanding life becomes, the more stressed we become in our attempt to keep up the pace. Personally, that is why I value the treasure of days like Memorial Day. As wonderfully patriotic and encouraging as our worship and celebration of the Lord’s Supper was at church yesterday, I am soaking up the warmth and comfort of a day for our family to rest and play together.
Our contemporary age over-stimulates us, and we pay a price physically. The major systems of the body – the heart, brain, nervous system, and immune system – are on constant alert to adapt to ever-increasing change. God’s Word teaches us that He will work all things out in due time. “Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time” (1 Peter 5:6). To humble ourselves positions us to trust God with life’s unavoidable pressures. Peter reveals the concept of stress management in the next verse, “Cast all your care upon Him because He cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7). He knew that there is no rest living outside of God’s moral and ethical boundaries. The farther we go outside of God’s protective guidelines, the closer we edge toward a life of frustration, anxiety, fear, and stress. Obedience, then, is the key to reducing stress.
God does not intend for you to lead a stress-filled life. Jesus knew and practiced the discipline of getting away and praying (Luke 5:15-16). To cast, or literally “throw”, your cares to God is to give Him the responsibility for things you already have no control over anyway. God gives us this privilege because He cares for us. Stress can be managed as you grasp God’s intimate care for the details of your life. Believing and resting in that truth will protect your mind, heart, and spirit from the overload of stress.