The stress and anxieties of life can be destroyed by faith in God, or faith in the finished work of God. Where anxiety begins, faith ends; but where faith begins, anxiety ends. Real faith in the grace of God is a rest and produces a relaxed attitude of trust within us. There is no rest outside of faith in the grace and finished work of God. When we understand grace, it is the end of stress, anxiety, trying hard, and struggling.
Can I tell you what I have learned about anxiety and worry (Matthew 6)? Worry is always future. It may be a future good thing and you want to be sure it really happens. It may be a future bad thing and you want to make sure it does not happen. We worry about what we do want and what we don’t want. When we worry, we are not acting like the work to take care of it is finished. We are acting like a work still needs to be done. What we need is a greater revelation of the finished work of God on the cross, which was a total work of grace. Yes, we need something done in our natural condition or circumstances to change, but the provision to change it has already been provided by God.
We can come to a relaxed attitude of trust (rest) because of the finished work of Jesus that has defeated our enemy and made all the provisions we would ever need available to us by a response of faith. We can receive rest for our stress by:
1. BELIEVE GOD’S PROMISES
Heb 4:1 Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.
2. TALK (PRAY) TO SOMEONE WHO CARES
Phil 4:6-7 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. 7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
3. TAKE NO ANXIOUS THOUGHT
Matt 6:25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
4. PRAY IN OTHER TONGUES (PRAY IN THE SPIRIT)
Isa 28:11-12 For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people. 12 To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.
5. DO RIGHT THINGS NOT JUST DO THINGS RIGHT
Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word. 40 But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me. 41 And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: 42 But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
6. STAY YOKED TO JESUS’ WILL
Matt 11:28-30 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.