Stressed?

Stressed?

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What does Jesus say to us about worry?

“Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?  Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?  Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?

“So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Matthew 6:25-34 (NKJV)

I love this passage and refer to it often, especially in times of anxiety!  I’m sure most of us have felt the pressures of life: financially, relationships, illnesses, troubles at work and home, etc.  At times it may feel like we’re all alone and with no solutions.

As we read above we are not alone and there is a solution!  Every time I see a fat little bird in my garden I think how the Lord does care for them and provides shelter and food.  If He takes the time for these little birds He will take care of you too.

The solution to all your worries is to seek God first, as Jesus mentioned in the verses above.  “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”  Seems so simple but it may seem so hard at the same time.  In our busy-ness in life it may be hard to find time for God.  “Bible study? WHEN?”, “Going to church? No time!”, “Prayer time?  I can’t”, etc.

It can be easy to get distracted by life and that’s understandable.  However it becomes a vicious cycle as we get more and more stressed by our whirlwind of activity and life’s pressures.

When I start to feel this way the Lord’s words come back to remind me: “Seek first the kingdom of God.”  I take a breath and ask the Lord to help me.

Here are some quick tips that have helped me focus on God and keep Him first in my life:

  • Turn off the T.V – this can be such a time waster.  Instead of watching an hour of American Idol, hit the DVR if you must, but watch it later and spend the time in prayer and/or Bible study.  You can do this alone, with your spouse, or your children.
  • Wake up a little earlier (or stay up a little later): I love it when the house is quiet and I can concentrate on prayer and reading my Bible.  You don’t need a long time; 10-15 minutes a day works wonders!
  • Turn off the radio in your car – I find myself praying a lot in my car, especially on long trips. Take the time to mediate on prayer and just talk with God.  If you’re commuting to work you can listen to sermons on the radio or get an audio book to listen to.
  • Exercise with some worship music or listen to a sermon while on your treadmill.

It does take discipline and practice to change your habits but the reward of being able to handle life’s stresses with the Lord’s help is worth it.

If you have any other tips for how we can seek God first in our lives please comment below!

Photo by Vincent Hernandez – Facebook Page

 

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