Stress relief has become a multifaceted, multi-billion-dollar industry. Armies of experts have emerged, dispensing advice of every sort. Some say the key is better time management—reduce stress by doing a better job of juggling everything we need to do. Others say the key is patience—be ambitious, but focus on less daunting short- and mid-range goals. Others tell us to reexamine our priorities from the quality-of-life angle and major on the things that count most. Still others take a more spiritual approach: Relieve stress through yoga, meditation, or other disciplines. Who are we to believe?
It reminds me of the story of the five blind men who were asked to describe an elephant. They each felt a different part of the animal before giving their answer. One grabbed ahold of the tail. “The elephant is like a rope,” he said. The next grabbed a leg. “No,” he said, “the elephant is like a tree.” The third man felt the elephant’s side. “No, the elephant is like a wall.” The fourth felt the trunk and said, “No, the elephant is like a serpent.” The last man felt an ear and said, “No, the elephant is like a leaf.” They were all right, but none of them was completely right or the only one who was right.
When it comes to our lives, God alone has the whole picture. He knows exactly what each of us needs to manage the stress and challenges we will inevitably face in life. And that’s not all. He also wants to be personally involved on a daily basis to show us what we can do to make that happen.
He will do that for you and heap His love on for good measure, as you turn to Him, tell Him what you need, and thank Him for His help. “The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your heart and mind through Christ Jesus.”1