One of the primary reasons people see a doctor is because of stress. Stress is not only considered a work hazard, but is linked to the six leading causes of death – heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, suicide, etc.
When stress is present, our physical bodies react. The brain releases chemicals and hormones, heart rate and blood pressure increase, the immune system is activated, the throat can become dry and tense, the skin becomes cool, clammy or sweaty, and the digestive system shuts down.
The source of stress can come from life events, transitions, the environment and other people. When many sources of stress hit at once, it is hard to take. One solution it to eliminate stress when you can. For example, could you say no to one more activity in your life that might bring undue stress? Sometimes, it is only a matter of eliminating certain stressors in your life.
There are other times in which you cannot get rid of the source of stress and have to cope with whatever happens. It is at those times, we need to consider our resources. Resources are those things that help us cope with stress when it hits. They include family, friends, spouse and community, finances, status, power, long suffering, patience, etc. When our resources are tapped out, we feel the full effects of stress. This is often when people develop symptoms of anxiety, depression and even suicide.
But we have a resource that never runs out. We have direct and personal access to the one who created our bodies and understands how we react to overwhelming stress. Jesus tells us to cast our burdens on Him. He assures us that His presence never leaves and that he is with us in times of trials and tests. It is through an intimacy with Christ that we are able to handle the avalanche of stress that feels like it could overwhelm us. And this resource, God’s Spirit in us, is available to us at all times. It is powerful and brings peace to the most troubled soul.
If you feel alone and overwhelmed, remember you have a champion in heaven who sits at the right hand of the Father and interceded for you. I think of the words of the old hymn, What a Friend We Have in Jesus.
“All our sins and griefs to bear. What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer. Oh what a peace we often forfeit, Oh what needless pain we bear. All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.”
Feeling stressed? You have an ever ending resource–a friend in Jesus who will never feel taxed out by your stress. Instead He invites you to let Him carry it. Use your resource and let His peace fill your heart.
For more help Breaking Free from Stress, click on this link to order Dr. Linda’s pocket size book!Stressed? Use your resources