I was asked to speak at our firm’s weekly devotion last month and I was given the topic, “How do we deal with life’s trials and tribulations?” I was specifically asked to discuss how Christians, who live in the real world, relate to issues and problems that we all face. I started the discussion by excusing all of those present who had never dealt with anger, anxiety or stress issues. I was not at all surprised when not one person left the room. After an opening prayer, I reminded the folks in attendance that we as Christians are not exempt from life’s trials and tribulations. We have all had in the past, and will experience in the future, problems of all sorts. The manner in which we deal with those issues, however, is directly related to how closely we walk with Jesus Christ. Our relationship with Him will allow us to deal with whatever comes our way.
It has been said that we live in an “age of rage” and that is a pretty good assessment. There is too much anger and hate all around us in today’s world. As we look at the world situation, we see wars, both civil and international; we are experiencing terrorist threats in all parts of the world; there hare been numerous severe weather-related disasters; and extreme poverty and hunger exists in many parts of the world. We can add much more to this list with little effort.
In our own country, we are forced to deal with political divisions that are growing wider and meaner in Washington. In 2008 and 2009, we experienced the near total collapse of our nation’s economy; the federal government operates on borrowed money and is deeply in debt; we have a most serious nationwide drug problem; we are facing serious problems relating to illegal immigration; severe storms are being more frequent and more violent; many of our financial institutions are still in trouble; we now face severe economic problems caused by something in Washington called “sequestration;” and this list goes on.
When a person constantly is reminded about all of these monumental problems, it is very easy to become angry, become stressed out, and even get depressed. When our anxiety and stress levels are reaching the upper limits, one might ask “is there any hope?” The answer is a resounding “yes!” So, where can we turn in times like that? It took me a fairly long time to realize that there is always hope for me because of the relationship I have with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I finally learned that I could always trust Him, and by relying on His promises, could deal with any problem or issue that came my way.
All we have to do is read Psalm 23:1-6 and realize that the answer to the question posed above is there for us. The Bible also is full of verses that are available to help us deal with anger, stress and depression. My prayer is that each of us will come to realize that we can handle life’s trials and tribulations by simply putting our focus on Jesus Christ, trusting Him and obeying His commandments. It’s not always easy to do that, but it always works. The reassuring thing is that God really loves us and is concerned about our lives and that will never change!
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