Locally we seem to have gotten away from the passing of people in their late 30s early 40s. This is a good thing. For awhile it seemed as though life span was reduced by half for far too many. I guess I've lived long enough now to actually desire the attainment of another 25 years as our national averages dictate. Barring the big "C" or some other unforeseen illness, I could do just that, unless I succomb to stress as so many are doing these days.
There's a glass of water(or a cup of coffee, I'm a little laid back)that sits just a few inches from my right hand when I'm in the pulpit. If I take that glass or cup and hold it up it isn't all that heavy(the plastic cup about half full is 6 oz. the coffee mug runs 26 oz.), but it's not really the weight that matters, it's the length of time I hold one or the other. Just picking up and putting down after drinking from it is not a problem. If I hold one for awhile that's not a problem, but if I hold either for an hour my arm will begin to ache, and if I continue to hold it for a day you may have to call an EMT. In each case, the weight is the same, but the longer I hold on to it, the heavier it gets. This is how it is with the stress that plagues our lives on a daily basis. If you hold on to your burdens they grow in weight until something gives, and I'm not referring to the ounces, that hasn't changed. We have to learn how to set it down for awhile. Pets are great for helping us set aside our burdens, other friends, too, can be of assistance. I believe, however, that faith is the greatest of helpers when it comes to setting aside the day to day burdens that come our way. With the help of my Lord I can leave the worry of work in it's place and get back to it again tomorrow, or on Monday. The personal stresses of life that we give so much weight to, can also be set down for a bit, until we've had a chance to rest and regain our strength. If I don't find a way to set my burdens apart from me something will give, and experience teaches one lesson, the weight in the cup or the glass, or on your "plate," is not going to change, only you and me are capable of changing. If you're carrying more than your share right now, and it's getting way too heavy, get some help in setting down the burden, it can improve your possibilities for life in a variety of ways. Laughter is good for the spirit. Let's laugh a little(or a lot)too, in this way we can help each other to "live long(Spock or one of those Vulcans said this)and prosper." I'm headed out on my biggest Harley to find something inspiring to bring back here for you to view!
Just a simple way to combat stress, that and prayer! In Christ's Love, Preacher.