Stress puts the squeeze on all of us at one time or another. It’s natural to look for relief. As we seek to discover just how practical our relationship with God really is, we might be led to ask, “Can God help me with some relief?”
It seems like some people in Palestine had that question nearly 2,000 years ago as they went out to hear a new preacher named Jesus. The all-knowing Jesus gave a wonderful answer in that teachable moment that we now call the Sermon on the Mount.
Matthew, one of the disciples with Jesus on that day, records some of Jesus’ comments about stress. He said, “I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food and the body more important than clothes?” (Matthew 6:25). To those stressed about grocery money, Jesus pointed out that God doesn’t let the birds go hungry. To others who were stressed over an inadequate wardrobe, Jesus pointed out that God doesn’t let the flowers down when it comes to how they look. His point was made in a question that he still asks us today, “Are you not much more valuable than they?”
Of course we are! The Bible tells us that “God so loved the world!” (John 3:16). You and I are included in that statement of good news. God showed his love by removing the greatest stress – our sin that separated us from our God – and placing it on Jesus who took it away by his death on the cross.
God has the perfect antidote to relieve stress. He wraps his loving arms around us and says, “I love you! I forgive you.” That relieves the stresses over finances or health or time crunches or job pressure . . . or anything. Relief is as close as God’s promises, which are written for us in the Bible. Each week we take a close look at some of those wonderful promises. Come and share with us some genuine stress relief.