Testing Stress and Testing Faith

How well do you respond to stress in your life, and in what ways has it been tested lately?

A good friend recently noted that I talk a lot about myself in my column, but usually end up in the Bible, so here goes.

Yes, I did have a stress test last week, and apparently there are different ways to test the way our body reacts to stress. Paul Hunley recently tested on a treadmill, and when Jan McLaughlin heard that I was to have a nuclear test she told me to expect time on the treadmill as well. I was actually looking forward to showing them how good of shape I’m in, but they must have assumed otherwise. All they did was feed me snacks, inject a couple of things in my arm, and take pictures of my heart. I guess I passed because they let me go, and I haven’t received a call. Now on to the Bible.

You won’t find the word “stress” in your concordance because it’s not in the Bible. We do, however, find references to anxiety, worry, trouble, the struggles of life, and how we should respond to such.

Jesus said, “Let not your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me.” (John 14:1) Obviously He wants us to trust that our heavenly Father will take care of our needs, and that what He did on the cross should make us confident of His love for us. The Apostle Paul spoke of the peace that will come if we take our needs to the Lord. In Philippians 4:6-7 he wrote, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Noting that we are tested in various ways, James actually said we should consider it all joy when we encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of our faith produces endurance, and that endurance is what makes us perfect and complete. (James 1:2-3)

The trials you are facing may not bring a smile to your face, but if you believe that God will not allow you to be tested beyond what you are able to endure, (I Cor 10:13) you should still find joy in His promise and provision.

God Bless, Rick

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