Its true that stress is just part of life to a certain degree. If we have a rich full life then we have stress. If our life involved other people at all, it involves stress. If you participate in school, church, extracurricular, or any other kind of outside activity ..you will have stress.
If you drive a car, go grocery shopping, pay the bills, have things, have to dust, have any laundry ..you will have some degree of stress. Its part of life, and while we should focus on limiting those things that we have control of there is plenty left over to still learn how to manage.
Our church is focusing on prayer the past couple of months. Our Sunday morning services, classes and lessons are all focused on this topic. Our Wednesday night Ladies Class is also focusing on this aspect of Christian-living. So, much of my thoughts have been geared in this direction.
I have found prayer to be a great stress reducer!
Not just because I can pray my stresses away by giving them to my Father, and trusting that He is in control. But also because I can use those little moments of tension as cues to remember to pray for other things.
I find myself most frustrated at red lights. They slow my progress, the stop my move forward, they make me late ..all of which causes some stress for me. I have been working on using those little stressful moments as cues to pray ..not for the traffic (though I wont lie and say that I havent prayed for that one time or more:) but for a set list of things that I have designated that days prayers for.
It has not only helped my stress during those moments, but it has created some great discussion time with God on others' behalf.
I have chosen red lights as my cue, because I am in the car just about every day for one reason or another. You can chose other things, like washing dishes, standing in line, doing laundry, picking up toys for the 100th time today as cues. Instead of letting yourself get frustrated in those moments, use them to your benefit!
I have started including my prayer-focus each day on my calendar. I have designated each day of the week to a family member (some have to share :) and when I get in those stressful moments that I have no control over I pray for that person.
Monday may be one sister and her family, Tuesday my parents, Wednesday another sister or a close friend. I dont need that list in front of me, but know generally who I have assigned for each day. I have prayed more for them the past several weeks then I have ever before ..and seemed to sit through more red lights too!
I also have a list on my "To Do" list ..a side list of focuses for my prayers this day or week. Every time I look at that list, I have a chance to remember those people in my prayers.
It kinda puts everything in perspective when I am looking at a TD list and then am reminded that a friend is struggling with the loss of her dad this week, or a baby is born who is not expected to live.
So, I hope today you find peace in the every day stresses that come with the abundantly blessed life we all lead!