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How to reduce stress

I have noticed that I could not rest in God nowadays. I could not figure out why. Finally I realized that I am in the middle of increased stress. After self diagnosis, I found the very good stress management strategies and resources online. Here is the one from Living on the Edge (https://livingontheedge.org/ ) . Pastor Chip Ingram shared his insight as below ;https://livingontheedge.org/2022/02/07/biblical-ways-to-reduce-stress/

13 Biblical Ways to Reduce Stress in Your Life Today


1. Eliminate hurry

Running around in flight-or-flight mode is no small thing. Speed and godliness are incompatible; hurry and loving others are simply incompatible. That’s why I appreciate this reminder from Dallas Willard:

“Ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.”


2. Downsize expectations

Because our expectations are so high and we’re under pressure, anger bubbles out.

I have to ask — who’s pressuring you to have a spotless house at all times? Where does it say that you have to return every single call on the same day? Or return an email immediately? Evaluate and set realistic expectations.


3. Be merciful

Love your enemies and do good to them. Let people off the hook and don’t worry about vengeance, which is God’s.

“But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” (Luke 6:35-36)

4. Admit mistakes and imperfections

As we say here at Living on the Edge, “Own your stuff.”

If we mess up, we admit it. No excuses, no blaming others. You’d be amazed at the relief of admitting the truth and acknowledging you’re a part of the human race.

Think about it — do you realize how much stress we’re under to slightly bend the truth? Resist the urge and instead, tell the truth.


5. Get right with God

“Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” (James 4:7-8)

Being in right relationship with the Creator is the beginning of peace.


6. Laugh more

One of my favorite remedies for reducing stress is found in Proverbs 17:22: A cheerful heart is good medicine.

In short, don’t take life or yourself too seriously.


7. Experience God

Experiencing God’s unconditional love and acceptance is transformative. Routinely ask God to remind you of the truth of this verse.

“The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” (Zephaniah 3:17)


8. Take care of yourself

You matter. You’re important, precious, and loved. You don’t have to be a health nut or professional athlete to experience the benefits of good nutrition, movement, and sunshine. Get some for yourself today.


9. Know what triggers your anger

HALT stands for hungry, angry, lonely, or tired. I appreciate this acronym for helping me to stop and take inventory and consider if my physical experience is triggering my anger.

Stop when you’re experiencing those feelings and care well for yourself. It’s extremely hard to make good decisions when you’re in that state. Likewise, you’ll be less patient and more likely to react in anger.


10. Trust God and His sovereignty

Take a deep breath and let the Sovereign God be in control.

“‘To whom will you compare me? Or who is my equal?’ says the Holy One. Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls forth each of them by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing. Why do you complain, Jacob? Why do you say, Israel, ‘My way is hidden from the Lord; my cause is disregarded by my God’? Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.” (Isaiah 40:25-28)


11. Learn to say no

I will always remember this truth I was taught by my friend, Chuck Swindoll:

“Learn to say no — kindly, artfully, and with excellence.”

The truth is, letting guilt drive your schedule will lead to resentment. To reduce stress in your life, practice your gracious “no.”


12. Pray about everything

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)

When you pray, your perspective of God is bigger. In turn, your perspective of your problems will get smaller.



 

The Institute for faith work & Economics also suggested the following ; https://tifwe.org/six-biblical-methods-for-handling-stress/


Biblical Methods for Handling Stress

Stress takes an undeniable toll on our whole self. Most of all, stress derails our relationship with God, distracting us from his provision, providence, and goodness. These biblical methods are not novel or groundbreaking. Instead, they are steadfast tools that help us re-center our hearts on the Lord.


Worship: Stress often comes from uncertainty or pressure, which can cause us to angrily blame God or ignore him when things aren’t working like we want them to. It’s hard to be angry or ignore God as we worship him, and he is always worthy of all our praise. If you can’t find the words, pray through Scripture to help you worship your creator. (Heb. 12:28; Ps. 95; Ps. 100)


Pray: This one seems obvious, but sometimes it’s harder than it seems. Praying through stress requires us to focus on the Lord. It re-routes our primary attention from an earthly issue to our heavenly father. (I Thess. 5:17; Jer. 29:11-14; 1 John 5:14-15)


Ask for help: Stress can be a signal that we are overloaded with too much on our plate. It’s a humbling reminder that we’re finite and fallible. If you’re under a load of stress, it may be time to ask for help from family, friends, or co-workers. If you are experiencing acute physical, mental, or emotional stress resulting from trauma, seek help immediately. (Rom. 12:4-5; Prov. 11:2; Ex. 18:14-15)


Seek Community: It’s easy to give up community when we’re stressed about anything from a to-do list to family trauma or a work nightmare. The body of Christ is meant to strengthen us when we’re weak, help us in times of need, support us during difficulties, and celebrate God’s faithfulness with us. Resist the urge to walk away from the body of Christ when you feel overwhelmed. Even a simple prayer request over text message keeps you plugged in to people who care about you. (Heb. 10:24-25; 1 Cor. 12:25-27)


Read Scripture: God’s Word repeatedly reminds us why worry and anxiety do not come from God. Meditate on the truth of Scripture and invite the Holy Spirit to work in your heart. (2 Tim. 3:16; Ps. 119:105; Matt. 4:4; Joshua 1:8)


Examine your load: Galatians 6 exhorts believers to share burdens as part of loving our neighbors and encouraging Christ-likeness. The Apostle Paul also, however, reinforces responsibility for ourselves. You are responsible for what’s on your plate. Too much prolonged stress may mean it is time to draw some boundaries, start saying “no”, and lightening your own load.

These biblical practices help recalibrate our spiritual response to stressors that disrupt equilibrium in our lives. Remembering that we serve a mighty, all-powerful God who reigns over every inch of our lives and promises to work all things for the good of those who love him helps rightly align our perspective.

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