Pressing into the Stress

If you couldn’t tell by my previous two posts, stress must be the theme lately.

Is anyone else feeling the pressure of the impending school year inevitably approaching?

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Rowdy kids, who are tired of being home, stressed out moms – about to burst – and the dads who end up picking up the shrapnel when they get home from long days of work.

So what do you do, when all you can feel is the paralyzing stress of parenting, and life itself?

Press in. Press in? Yes, press into the stress.

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Think of a diamond. Without pressure, a diamond would not reach it’s full potential, it would stay a lump of coal.

How do you do that?

Well, first pray.

Only God can help release your stress so you can function, change your situation for the better, and protect you from your temptations to fall into unhealthy coping techniques or act out of anger or frazzled attitudes.

Second, take a moment to breathe and think.

If it is stress with your kids, ask yourself, “What do they really need right now?” Think of what they are lacking that is making them upset.

Don’t focus on how fair their punishment is for acting that way – focus on loving them unconditionally and showing them grace.

If you don’t show them grace, don’t expect them to learn it.

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For example…

My second daughter is such a challenge for me. She is so intense, full out meltdowns, screaming until she gets her way (or falls asleep – which is rare), and hurting everyone around her.

You know she needs when she does that? Snuggles and hugs! Yeah, I was surprised too. When she doesn’t feel secure, she lashes out physically, because she needs her physical needs met.

Third, lean on your support system.

If you have a spouse, let them give you a break, without blaming them for being gone or feeling guilty for needing a break.

If you are a single parent, lean on your family and friends, and even your church family. They are there to help you regroup, and in turn, be a better parent/person yourself.

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…pressing into the stress usually means not letting the stress conquer you or keep you from fulfilling your purpose/potential.

Don’t undermine the role of spiritual warfare in your life.

For example…

Every time my husband needs to be gone for ministry or family, etc., my kids go bonkers!

It doesn’t matter what fun activities I have planned to distract them or bribe them with (totally didn’t think I’d bribe my kids…mommy shame…), they will not relax until he comes home.

So what is a frazzled mom to do? Press in. Press into the peace and strength that Jesus gives me, remember I love my children more than they stress me out, and not forget my husband is fulfilling his purpose.

The enemy wants me to explode, so my kids are hurt and my husband is hindered. Not today Satan!

Always remember who the real enemy is here…

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Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.

In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication.”

Ephesians 6:11-18a ESV

Claim the victory in Christ and press into God’s Word and the Holy Spirit. Take up your sword and shield – always be ready to fight the real enemy!

#stress #VictoryInChrist #TheHaven

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