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Habits that Lead to Happiness: Pt 9

How to Live Stress Free, Part 2

If you would like to extend this over a week, you can easily do one of the points each day of your devotion.  For a printable version, click here.  
Philippians 4:7 - If you do these things, you will experience God's peace which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand.  His peace will keep your thoughts quiet and your heart at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.  (LB)

Personal stress is near record level.  In America, suicide has now passed car crashes as the number one cause of injury death.  Seven top causes to stress include job loss, money, health, relationships, poor diet, media overload, and lack of sleep.  However, the Bible talks about a peace that surpasses all understanding even amidst the chaos.  God promises a more peaceful, less stressed mind.  Philippians 4:7 says that the perfect peace of God will keep our thoughts quiet and our hearts at rest.  This passage comes with a stress-reduction guarantee!  Who isn't interested in acquiring this type of peace?  It does come with premises--worrying about nothing, praying about everything, thanking God in all things, thinking about good things, and being content with anything--which are choices we can make.  In this guide, we will learn to manage stress by the strategies taught in Philippians 4:6-13.  

Open in prayer.  Ask God to open your heart.

Matthew 6:26 - Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them.  Are you not much more valuable than they?

1.  In all of God's creation, only humans worry!  What does this scripture teach us about trusting in God?

Philippians 4:7 - If you do these things you will experience God's peace....  His peace will keep your thoughts quiet and your heart at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus. (LB)

2.  Read Philippians 4:7 - What "things" does Paul want us to do so we can experience God's peace instead of worrying?

3.  What does it mean to trust in Jesus?

Matthew 6:27 - Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? (NIV)

4.  Worry cannot change the past or control the future.  It only makes us miserable today.  Why do we spend so much time worrying about things?  Since worrying is a learned behavior, how do you believe it can be unlearned?

James 4:2 - You do not have, because you do not ask God. (NIV)

5.  We could pray about everything.  We need to stop talking only to ourselves and start talking to God!  What stops us from praying to God in every situation we face?

6.  If you take something for granted that you currently have or think you deserve, you might start complaining about something you don't have.  How can you maintain a thankful heart while you are going through unfavorable times?

7.  When we are in a miserable situation, thinking about good things is not an easy task.  But if we trust in God, it would be easier to unload our worry or burden.  How can you stop worrying in poor circumstances in your life?

8.  When things are going well, it's easy to be content.  How can you learn to be content in every situation?  If you have any experience being content in the worst circumstances, think about how you dealt with it.