Scripture: James 1:2-4


What we do for a living (job stress) has become such a problem that it can cause a number of occupational diseases.  This leads to physical problems like ulcers, depression, and even suicide.  It can control your whole life to the point that it makes it hard for some people to function during the day.  


James 1:2-4;  “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; 3Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. 4But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”   


God tells us that we are going to encounter all types of problems during our life.  This is expected and we have to learn to deal with these problems.


What causes stress?  


Pressure on the job through tension and anxiety about things that take place that sometimes you have no control over causes stress.  Pay cuts, layoffs, shift changes, who you report to all tend to cause tension. 


There are other things that can cause stress like death of a spouse, divorce, separation, jail time, illness or injury.  


Common reaction to stress


            We try to flee the problem by changing jobs, bosses, or environment in hope that it will go away.  Some try to bottle it up trying to suppress it hoping it will go away.  Most often it just comes out somewhere else in another area of our life affecting our family.  Still others crumble emotionally, giving way to despair and depression.


Our responses to Stress


            The Word of God reveals several fundamental principles that can bring us through tough times and even positively benefit our spiritual and emotional well being in the process.

            First:  We should look at our situation and do not over react.  God has already said that He would be there for us.  God is the author and finisher of our faith.  Thank God for His daily grace to sustain you.


            Second:  rely on God’s strength, and not on yours.  Satan will try to convince you that you can handle this on your own.  Always turn it over to God.  Lean on God during these times and let God stabilizes our emotions with His peace.  God will give you wisdom to deal with the situation and any hardship you are going through.  Look at Ephesians 6:10-12;  “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 11Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”  


            Third:  Thank God that He is at work on your behalf producing some positive results from stressful circumstances.  Anytime you are having trouble you should turn toward the Lord, seeking and trusting Him with new fervor.  These trials should make us better Christians. 


“If you are not going through something you better check who you are working for.”


      Trials build Christian character allowing us to persevere under the load.  Look at Romans 5:3-5,  3And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; 4And patience, experience; and experience, hope: 5And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”  As we turn to the sufficiency of Christ and trust in His power and wisdom, we gain new spiritual maturity and hardiness of spirit.


How God uses our Stressful times


            God is never out to break us or shatter us.  God uses our stressful times as opportunities for us to gain His perspective, to lean on His strength, and develop steadfastness with which we can run life’s course. 


            God may not change the circumstance that is pressing so grievously on you.  But God will always be there to see you through.  Over time, you will find God’s strength, wisdom, and presence sufficient for the fray.  We become steadfast Christians, able to endure and overcome through the power of Jesus Christ.


     Cast your burdens on the Lord, and He shall sustain you, Psalm 55:22; “Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.”