Do you have a gallon jug in your refrigerator? You don’t need to get it, just imagine it. Now imagine another next to it, and another, and another. Keep adding jugs until you get 2000. Every day your heart pumps about two thousand gallons of blood through your body. Stifle your heart’s ability to pump blood and you guarantee yourself an early retirement—from life!
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. Stress contributes to heart disease in a big way.
You don't have to be a corporate executive, a professional bungee jumper, or a bullfighter to experience stress. Stress comes from "big stuff," but it is usually lots of the “small stuff” that puts us over the edge. Despite the popular admonition, we do sweat the small stuff:
- Being late for an appointment
- Giving a five-minute presentation
- Deciding which bills to pay
- Waiting on a repairman who is late
- Figuring out what to do when a babysitter cancels, or a date collapses
Big stuff, little stuff—it is all stressful stuff!
What is tying you up in knots today? It's time to identify it and deal with it! David shows us how.
David was was on the run from one of his own sons. His kingdom was crumbling before his very eyes. This was BIG STRESSFUL STUFF, but that was okay. David knew what to do with it.
But you, O Lord, are a shield around me; you are my glory, the one who holds my head high. I cried out to the Lord, and he answered me from his holy mountain. I lay down and slept, yet I woke up in safety, for the Lord was watching over me. I am not afraid of ten thousand enemies who surround me on every side. Victory comes from you, O Lord. May you bless your people. Psalm 3:3-6,8 NLT
David gave his stress to God. He spelled out his problems and trusted God to meet his needs. And God came through! God gave David a good night’s sleep, 24-7 heavenly security, and a lion’s heart to face his foes.
Do you have stressful stuff? You can hang onto it or you can give it to God. Giving your stress to God is not pretending your troubles don't exist. It is crying out to God. It is declaring, "God, you are bigger than this!" . . . and then resting in the fact that he really is. It is clinging to the promises of God's Word rather than the cries of your anxious heart.
God IS a shield about you ... so give him that stress and find his rest.