I Samuel 30:1-6
Intro: We find David was leading his men to Ziklag but when they arrived they found the city was burnt down, their wives, daughters, and sons had all been kidnapped and so David and all that was with him began to cry out and weep over what had been done. They were heartbroken, tired and much stressed from the long journey they had just come off of. They cried until they couldn`t cry any longer. Then all of a sudden in verse 6 all the people began to turn on David and even wanted to stone him. After all he was their leader and they put the blame on him for everything that had happened. Keep in mind David journeyed with them and he hurt just as much as they did but instead of banning together they turned on him and the Bible says in verse 6 he was very distressed. In other words he was stressed out. Have you ever been there? Have you had so much on you at one time that you feel very stressed out? A lot of God`s people today are under so much trouble and pressure that they are continuously stressed out. We are living in a very stressful society; people anymore especially in the house of god are so uptight that you can hear them squeak as they walk by. And friend if we are not careful we let stress get to us so badly that we become ineffective for God and we could die from it. Stress is a silent killer that will cause him to fall over dead if we do not learn to control it. So with all of this in mind I want to preach on the subject “Dealing with days of Stress.” I start off by asking the question;
1. WHAT IS STRESS?
Webster says that stress is a factor causing mental or emotional strain or tension.
Let’s face the facts; sometimes when things don’t go our way we stress out over it mentally and emotionally. And even physically sometimes we stress our bodies out to the max by running to and fro, or working so much we do not take time to rest. You know God does want us to stop and smell the roses every once in a while, He wants us to take a little time to rest every now and then. As a matter of fact look what Jesus said in Mark 6:31. That means goes somewhere and take a load off. Sit down a little spell and rest a while. Go fishing, take a walk or a hike, take a vacation and just relax. Come apart before you fall apart. When you feel stressed out just stop and rest. So stress is a tension or mental and emotional strain that can be deadly if we do not learn to control it.
2. WHAT CAUSES STRESS?
There are several factors that lead to stress but I will give you what I found from the researchers from the University of Washington found.
- Death of a Spouse
- Marital Separation
- Jail Term
- Death of close family member
- Personal injury or Illness
- Fired from work or laid off
- Marital Reconciliation
- Change in family member’s health
- Sex Difficulties
- Addition to family
- Business Readjustment
- Change in financial status
- Mortgage or foreclosure
- Change in work responsibility
- Children problems (Rebellion)
- in Laws
- Starting or finishing school
- Work hours, eating habits, Living conditions, Trouble with the boss,, Christmas season and several other reasons can lead up to stress in a person’s life both Christian and non-Christian and God wants us as His children to depend upon Him instead of staying stressed out all of the time. Because a person under stress cannot be effective for God!!!
3. WHAT ARE THE RESULTS OF STRESS?
One of the consequences of stress is a learned helplessness of hopelessness that leads to depression. It can cause chronic anxiety, High B.P. Heart Disease, addictive disorders, Headaches, sweaty palms and rapid Heart Beat. It affects your nervous system, Immune system, making it easier to catch colds, it affects your digestive system, causes obesity, worsen skin conditions, triggers asthma attacks, muscle aches, clinched jaw, tooth grinding, tiredness, sleep problems,Irrability, worrying, anger, mood swings, feelings of insecurity, confusion, forgetfulness, resentment, guilt, inability to concentrate, and seeing only the negative things in life. It can cause drug abuse, you say I`m a Child of God it won`t bother me, better be careful of saying that. Peter thought he would never deny Christ but he did and under the stress of all that was going on even when the lady by the fire ask if he was one of them he denied Jesus. So stress can affect you if you’re saved or not. It causes social withdraws alcohol usage, and much more. It is a silent but deadly killer that can lead you to an early grave. It is definitely not of God so we know who it is of Satan. He would destroy us if he could even if it meant stressing us out. Think of Peter again when Jesus told him that Satan wanted to sift him as wheat. He wanted to kill Peter because Peter would do some great things for God. And you & I are no exception. Well, now that we have seen what stress is and what stress does what’s next?
4. WHAT ARE SOME WAYS TO RELIEVE STRESS
There are many ways to relieve stress and control it if only we would take time to do it. There are physical ways as well as Spiritual ways. I will begin with the physical and end up with the Spiritual and thank God we who are saved by the grace of God have a great advantage in relieving stress.
One way physically to relieve stress is to;
- Eat & drink sensibly, I`m not talking about drinking alcohol Christians aren’t supposed to do that. Wine is still a mocker… Don`t drink Coca Cola & Pepsi or Mt. Dew so much or anything high in caffeine or sugar.
- Assert yourself- There is nothing wrong with saying No every once in a while. Quit being a yes man or woman so much cause sometimes people will take advantage of your good nature.
- Stop smoking & Other Bad Habits
- Take responsibility- Control what you can and leave behind what you cannot. Paul said in Philippians 3:14- “Forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forth to those things which are before.”
- Set Goals- Philippians 3:14 “I press toward the mark…”
- Study & Practice some relaxation techs…
- Manage your time and take time out for yourself
- Remind yourself of your limitations. You can only do so much
These are all mostly physical ways of reducing stress in your life but what about the Spiritual way of reducing stress? Thank God we who are saved can do exactly what David did. I Samuel 30:6- “But David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.” How did David encourage himself?
- He prayed and cried to God- Psalm 18:6 we just need to talk with the Lord about it.
- He trusted and depended- Psalm 25:1-2 God wants us to trust Him and depend upon Him to help us. We did for Salvation and so should we for Stress.
- He blessed and Praised- Psalm 34 :1 & 8- If we would stop and count our blessings and think about what He has saved us from and where He is taking us to a stress free land we won’t help but to praise His name . And that is a stress reliever!!!
- He waited upon the Lord- Psalm 40:1-2 wait on God and He will help us, don’t get ahead of God that’s the problem with a lot of people.
- He looked to God for hope, health, and help- Psalm 42:5 & 11- It`s ok to go to the Docs but remember we have the ultimate Physician. He is our hope, help and comfort even in some of the most stressful times. So in Dealing with days of stress goes to the ultimate stress reliever, His name is Jesus.
CONCLUSION: MATTHEW 11:28-30 WHEN WE ARE AT REST IN HIM ALL STRESS SEEMS TO DISAPPEAR!!!
By: Bro. Walter Terrell