Have you ever noticed how many books and magazine articles are written with a “how-to” slant? Here are a few examples: How to Lose 15 Pounds in a Week, How to Turn Your Junk Collection into Stunning Centerpieces, and How to Have a New Kid by Friday. Many of these articles and books contain advice that really works. Others leave me shaking my head, wondering how in the world I’m supposed to apply their counsel to my real life.
In my last blog, I wrote about how to apply the power of praise to our fears. This morning I read a passage that gives instruction about how to live above worry and stress. These words brought me such encouragement that I want to share them with you in their entirety.
Note that I’ve italicized the commands we’re to follow if we hope to live stress-free. But also note that each command is followed by a promise made by God Himself. When we do our part, we can rest assured that He will do His.
“Don’t worry about the wicked or envy those who do wrong.
For like grass, they soon fade away. Like spring flowers, they soon wither.
Trust in the LORD and do good. Then you will live safely in the land and prosper.
Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you your heart’s desires.
Commit everything you do the LORD. Trust him, and he will help you.
He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn, and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun.
Be still in the presence of the LORD, and wait patiently for him to act. Don’t worry about evil people who prosper or fret about their wicked schemes.
Stop being angry! Turn from your rage! Do not lose your temper – it only leads to harm.
For the wicked will be destroyed, but those who trust in the LORD will possess the land.
Soon the wicked will disappear. Though you look for them, they will be gone.
The lowly will possess the land and will live in peace and prosperity. (Psalm 37:1-11 NLT)
These commands contain great advice about how to live above stress and fear, but their practical application requires thought and effort. For instance, how do I not worry? How do I trust in the Lord? How do I take delight in the Lord? How do I be still in His presence?
I’ll share some personal thoughts on Monday’s blog, but for now I’d love to hear from you regarding how you follow these commands in practical ways. Let’s help each other out with suggestions that really work!