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Good and Bad Stress

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I give you peace, the kind of peace that only I can give. It isn’t like the peace that this world can give. So don’t be worried or afraid.

John 14:27

We all experience stress because we are created to experience good stress. The problem Satan can take our good stress and turn it into bad stress. Satan normally takes something God created for good and turns it into something sinful. Can you recognize when you are experiencing good stress and when experiencing bad stress? We will define each type of stress and how to overcome bad stress taking information from both scientific and Biblical sources.

Good stress is normally short-term and motivates us to achieve something. Good stress occurs when we have sufficient control over something, and this stress actually helps us. Bad stress is normally long-term and is accompanied by feelings of helplessness because we don’t have sufficient control over the situation or task. Bad stress is caused by fear and is accompanied by worry.

We have heard the bad physical and mental results of long-term stress and worry. We are releasing the fight or flight hormones in our body almost continuously, which can be hazardous to our health.

Below are four scientific ways to overcome bad stress.

Accept what you cannot change – Bad stress usually occurs when we are in a condition that we cannot control. Slow down, relax, calm the emotion of fear and anger, and replace it with wisdom. Know that all things are possible for the Lord and seek his guidance through the stressful situation. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Helping Others – A report in the American Journal of Public Health found that helping people can reduce stress. Many articles reveal that those who volunteer to help others have less stress and tend to be more content and thankful. Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. (1 Peter 4:10) God created us to have a mind and heart of love and to minister to others, pointing them to Christ. Therefore a Christian filled with God’s love, walking in faith ministering to others, experiences very little bad stress.

Meditate – Meditating is taking your mind into deep thought on a pleasant subject, overriding the emotional bad stress. We can meditate most anytime to escape the stress, and it helps us to take control of our thinking. Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. (Joshua 1:8) The Lord tells us to meditate on his Word because it relaxes us, gives us peace, and reduces our stress. When we pray, praising and thanking the Lord, and asking him for guidance, our stress is reduced because through our faith the Lord gives us peace.

Exercise – Aerobic exercise is great for reducing stress because endorphins flood the body helping us to relax and reduces the power of the stressful event. Taking care of our physical health, proper food, sleep, exercise, good associations, and controlling our thoughts; all are involved with our physical and mental health.“Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is valuable in every way, because it promises life both for the present and for the future.” (1 Timothy 4:8) Physical exercise has value for our health, but spiritual exercise helps us physically, mentally, and spiritually. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.(Philippians 4:8) Science has discovered that the way we think has a huge effect on physical and mental health.

Today seek to aide your mental, physical, and spiritual health. Give any bad stress to the Lord and seek peace as you trust the Lord to guide you through the stressful event. Seek to walk confidently today with peace and joy. Know you can handle anything with the love and the power of the Lord who is always with you.

Prayer: Lord guide me today with a heart and mind of peace, as I trust you in all things. Take away bad stress and replace it with faith. Help me to reflect you love to others and minister to any lost souls that you bring to me. In Jesus me, Amen