Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Needless Stress

Stress... we all know what that is right!  

I was sitting in church this morning, after enjoying some excellent worship, ready to listen to the sermon. As soon as the pastor begun I knew this particular sermon was one I really needed to pay attention to.  Of course it would be typical that it was feeding time for my baby girl and I'd have to use every morsel of concentration power I could muster up to take the message in as I wanted to.  We are currently in a series called Truth vs Myth at our church and as you must have guessed by now it was all about stress today.

MYTH - "other people cause my stress"
TRUTH - How I choose to respond creates the stress

How many times have I suffered and, therefore, made my family suffer through needless 'stress head' moments.  Part of the message today was about accepting who God has made you to be and not comparing yourself with others or some built up, unrealistic image of what you or others think you should be.  I shouldn't be concerned with what I'm not (which I confess I do regularly) but rather focus on what God has made me to be.. the things he has made me good at.  I should focus on working with what God has given me and not compare that with anyone else. (so much easier said then done)

I have a personal battle with low self-esteem and insecurity.  I know only to well how unhealthy that is.  I find it so easy to think I should be better at this or that, or I ought to be like xyz.  But what I need to accept is that God made me the way I am with the weaknesses & strengths I have.   I need to re-adjust my view of myself.. tune into what God has made me and accept certain things about myself.  If I learn to embrace what I am capable of, embrace the gifts God has given me and ask for help with the things that I'm not capable of or gifted at, then how much more enjoyable/less stressful life will be.  God has given me a wonderful family and I need to allow us to function at it's best.. the best for us.. even if that is different from what I feel it 'should' be - who says what it should be anyway?  Every family is different, with different talents, needs & views.

One of my silly issues in the past has been that I felt it should be 100% my role to be the cook of the house.  I felt that I was letting my family & myself down somehow if my husband did the cooking and I would feel guilty for it.  But why would I make myself feel that way?  My husband is not only happy to do it, but enjoys cooking.  We recently came to a 'formal' decision that my husband would cook on the weekends.. to give me a break and because he enjoys it.  Now that it has been 'formalized' I feel less guilty and feel less like I'm letting my family down... less worried about what my children will think of me by not fulfilling this role on the weekends. (less stressed in others words)
I know I fear far too much what people think of me and I need to put an end to it...  I must remember who it is that I'm trying to please and focus my energies on things that really matter:

"I don't try to please myself, but I try to please the One who sent me."  John 5v30 (NCV)