A young woman rushes into Starbucks, brows knitted, fists clenched tight and orders a Venti Mocha Latte, “Double espresso please.”
A child chews on the eraser end of her pencil as bends over her social studies test.
Fighting through rush-hour traffic a man tightly grips his steering wheel and screams at the driver who just cut him off.
What do all these people have in common?
This weekend I attended a workshop on overcoming stress. There is no way to escape stress. We all face work deadlines, family responsibilities, monthly bills, crazy-mad traffic and long, long, long checkout lines.
The speaker at the workshop said that while stress solutions like deep breathing and cat naps might reduce stress for awhile, there is only one real way to truly manage stress.
Change your mindset.
Since we can’t change the length of the checkout line or the work deadline we must change how we think about them.
Often when we are under stress we have a series of sentences we repeat over and over to ourselves. For instance, when a work deadline looms your brain might sing a refrain of:
I’m just no good at this.
I’ll never get the project done on time.
Surely, I will fail.
These choruses will not reduce stress–only increase them. What we need to do instead is pop in a new CD in our heads with a different song. Instead of telling yourself, “I’m no good at this” you might tell yourself “The boss wouldn’t give me this job if she didn’t think I could do it” or “I mastered that other difficult program, I will conquer this task too.”
As Christians we can take this on step further and use the power of Scripture to compose our truth songs. When the brain starts singing the tune “I’m no good at this” you can counter with
“ I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)
“It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure.” (Psalm 18:32)
Use the power of Scripture to combat stress!
Question: What is your favorite Scripture to combat stress?