DIRECTIONS by Dr. Clay Smith, Lead Pastor
People want me to be stressed out. My Facebook page is filled with posts warning me about gays taking over the church, the government coming after my guns, and sharks at the beach. People who call themselves my friends send me messages telling me about a secret conspiracy to arrest pastors who won’t bake cakes for gay couples. Democrats warn me about the Republican plot to take my money; Republicans warn me about the Democratic plot to take my money. Either way, it looks like I will be out some money. Facebook is making my heart rate go up.
Whether I watch CNN or Fox News, there is always someone warning me that if I breathe I will get cancer. Apparently both liberals and conservatives agree if it tastes good, it’s bad for you. Congressmen appear on both networks and tell me it’s the other guy’s fault that things are so messed up in Washington. Ten minutes in front of the news makes my blood pressure rise ten points.
If the news reports don’t get to me, the commercials will. Ads bombard me telling me I need fresher breath in case it’s raining and I get in a cab with a member of the opposite sex. Apparently, I am unattractive without hair; a celebrity endorsing a hair product tells me I need more of it. My old truck needs to be replaced because it doesn’t look shiny enough to pull stumps out of the ground. All these ads are fishing for my insecurities, trying to make me stressed enough to buy their products.
Almost daily the mail brings me an offer of a new credit card with low interest that will take away the stress. All I have to do is book my travel to get away from it all on this card and I will have no worries. That is, until thirty days have passed and I get the bill. Funny how the people who offer those cards want you to spend and pay. There is nothing like a balance sixty days overdue on a credit card charging 18% interest to stress you out.
Even if everyone in the world wants me to be stressed, I need to hear the gentle voice of Jesus: “Come to me all you who are weary and heavy-laden (sounds like stress), and I will give you rest.”
Come to Jesus and tell him about your stress. Come to him and hear his gentle words. Come to him and know his peaceful presence. He has the rest you need.
Excuse me now; I need to log out of Facebook, turn off the TV, throw away the junk mail, and be with Jesus. He helps my blood pressure go down.