Are you ever stressed?
Silly question, right?
We can never remove all the issues of our life that bring us stress. We have to somehow learn to navigate our lives through stress.
I have some easy suggestions. I have shared this strategy so many times. I hope you find it helpful.
Let me warn you: This isn’t some deep, researched system. These are simple. But, in my experience, they are powerful suggestions.
Here are 4 steps to a less stressed life:
Get a set of index cards. Write on each one what you are most concerned about in life right now. Only one concern per card, but use as many cards as necessary. Everything you’re concerned about—worried about, if that’s your word—goes on a card.
There is something cleansing about writing out your concerns. It is a therapeutic exercise. (Insider information—you’ll find some of the things don’t merit a card once you have to write them.)
Place cards. After you’ve completed your cards, lay them face up on a table in front of you. This is a bare-your-soul moment. Now, share them with God. He knows them already—better than you—but do it anyway. It is freeing to give your recorded burdens to your Creator.
Pray. Pray something like this: “God, this is what I have before me which I can’t handle. I’m asking You as my Father, who loves me more than I can imagine, to give me direction, success, wisdom, patience, and understanding in every area of my life. Lead me along the path you would have for me. I’m trusting completely in you. If this season is a success in my life, it will depend on You. I love You Lord. In Jesus name, Amen”.
Do the best you know how to do. And then leave the rest in God’s hands.
Please understand this is not a formula for success. I don’t believe those exist.
And this isn’t simple. I used the word simple earlier, but that was just to keep you reading. There’s nothing simple about walking away from your right to control your outcome and leaving things in God’s hands. Even though we ultimately have very little control over the way things turn out in our life—we still naturally want to try. Worry often comes easier than faith.
Also, understand God is certainly not defined by our prayers. God will do what is best for us and His will—even when that disagrees with what we think we want.
This “system” is, however, Biblical—in my opinion. I based it on Hezekiah’s actions in response to receiving a letter that threatened his entire kingdom. (Talk about stress.) Read that story again in 2 Kings 19:14–19.
I have tried this numerous times, and God always responds to my humble attempt to surrender my fears, stress, and concerns to Him.
Sometimes this response has relieved me of my stress. Most of the time, however, this process helps me refocus and feel a sense of calm among my circumstances knowing my God is ultimately in control.
Try this and see what happens.
Ron Edmondson pastors Immanuel Baptist Church. Find out more at: http://www.ronedmondson.com/about