Wednesday, March 22, 2023


                 By Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D.

 Jesus Christ said:  "If God so clothe the grass, which is today in the field, and tomorrow is cast into the oven; how much more will He clothe you, O ye of little faith.” (Matt. 16:8)

Stress is an insidious enemy that often impedes normal living and destroys happy relationships!  It can devastate the harmony within an individual, leaving in its wake, fear and foreboding, uncertainty, and distress.

All of us are affected by stress, one way or another; reaching into the past, present, and future! Past mistakes often nag at the conscience until it causes stress and pain.  Many are tormented by a lack of achievement, their poor standing in the community and failure to improve their lot in life.  And some see no hope for their future!

Financial reverses, health problems, marital discord, and family breakdown, all contribute to strain, stress, ulcers, and nervous breakdown!

The innocent party in a marital break-up, who is trying unsuccessfully to save the marriage against the advice of family, friends, and counsellors - often suffers horrific loneliness, condemnation, and abandonment. Sorrow and grief, connected with the "passing of a loved one", can also bring great stress on the ones left behind to mourn!

Young people often find themselves in stressful situations like changing schools, making new friends, studying for exams, and coping with the contorted world of youth violence, drugs, and sex promiscuity! The heartbroken parents of a child overdosing on marijuana, cocaine or fentanyl doesn’t heal easy.

The scourge of human trafficking children for the sex-trade has become Canada’s newest heartbreak! Human sex trafficking is the fastest growing crime in Canada. The RCMP estimate that 15,000 to 20,000 children go missing every year!

Stress can cause fatigue, heart palpitations and insomnia.  As well as emotional disorders, mental illness, and even organic diseases. And stress can kill!


That's the bad news - but the good news is that stress can be stimulating, healthy and harmless, if properly channeled! Guilt and remorse can be eliminated, if sins are confessed to God, wrongs are righted, and a new course charted!

Jesus said. “O ye of little faith?" (Luke 12:28). Even though Jesus’ disciples saw His miracles and heard His words of promise and life, they failed to believe! Only through receiving Jesus Christ into our hearts and being filled with His blessed Holy Spirit, will we begin to learn to walk in the Spirit! By God’s grace alone, the Holy Spirit imparts faith through His eternal Word!

Stressful situations can be reversed, nervous tension harnessed, and difficult times can become a blessing instead of a liability!  If we appropriate the promises of the Bible for ourselves, and act upon them in faith, we can have victory!

Christians have the benefit and solace of making their request known and bringing their burdens to the Lord in prayer! I have personally witnessed the miracles which faith in God have accomplished in the most trying, stressful and hopeless situations!

 The only way to handle stress is the ‘Bible Way’!  Before I share my thoughts on this vital subject, however, here are some findings by expert psychologists. Canada's Dr. Hans Selye, the father of stress research, defines stress as "the nonspecific response of the body to any demand". Selye - world famous endocrinologist - created a new terminology, when he differentiated between good stress - 'eustree' (latin 'eu', meaning good) and bad stress - 'distress' (latin, 'dis', meaning bad).

In his book 'The Stress of Life', Selye states, "No one can live without experiencing some degree of stress.  You may think that only serious disease or intensive physical or mental injury can cause stress.  This is false.  Crossing a busy intersection, exposure to a draft, or even sheer joy are enough to activate the body's stress mechanism to some extent.

"Stress is not even necessarily bad for you; it is also the spice of life, for any emotion, any activity, causes stress."  Dr. William L. Webb, secretary of U.S., Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine says, "The idea that states of mind, relationships, personalities or lifestyles affect the body is not new, but it has only recently gained the attention of doctors trained in science and technology".

Important research has been done by Dr. James J. Lynch of the University of Maryland's School of Medicine, to connect the emotions with heart disease. In an 1983 article by Catherine Houck - condensed by Reader's Digest - we get an insight into his work.

"In his book 'The Broken Heart', Lynch has documented the thesis that happy relations with spouses, friends and relatives not only can be good for mental health but may also protect you against cardiovascular disease."

Lynch writes, "The changes in the cardiovascular system show how profoundly important human dialogue is to bodily health. Under ordinary circumstances, the increase in blood pressure must be viewed as a natural reaction; not harmful in itself.  In cases of chronic hypertension in which there is no known organic cause, however, research indicates that the problem may stem from faulty communications and stressful relationships.

Sustained stress is now suspected to have links with diseases such as digestive disorders, osteoporosis and even cancer!

In the case of osteoporosis - caused by a long-term lack of calcium - even with the aid of supplements, stress upsets the digestive system so severely that calcium is not absorbed by the bones! Again, stress can play a part in who gets cancer and who does not, says Dr. William A. Greens, professor of medicine and psychiatry at the university of Rochester Medical Center.

And a study by Dr. Marvin Stein of New York's Mount Sinai School of Medicine, shows that bereavement and depression have a direct affect on the lessening of a person's immune system's ability to ward off diseases!


In my opinion, we must remember to pray and trust God.  There is no better and closer friend than Jesus Christ, our Lord. There is no power as strong as faith, and a personal relationship with our Heavenly Father destroys all the fears and torments that come our way.

St. Peter said, "Casting all your cares upon Him, for He careth for you" (1 Pet. 5:7).  And Jesus stated, "My peace I give unto you.  My peace I leave with you.  Not as the world giveth, give I unto you.  Let not your heart be troubled". (John 14:27)

Our Blessed Lord also said, "Come unto Me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest". (Matt. 11:28). An old gospel song says it all:

 Leave it there, leave it there. Take your burdens to the Lord. And leave it there. If you trust and never doubt. He will surely bring you out. Take your burdens to the Lord. And leave them there!"

The Bible says: “When the even was come, they brought unto Him many that were possessed with devils; and He (Jesus) cast out the spirits with His Word, and He healed all that were sick: That it might be fulfilled which was spoken be Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare all our infirmities.” (Matt. 8;16,17)

“Who His own Self bare our sins in His own Body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness; by Whose Stripes we are healed.” (1 Peter 2:24); “He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this Purpose the Son of God was manifested, the He might Destroy the works of the devil.” (1 John 3:8)

St. James said, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will Flee (in terror) from you.”  May we all learn to trust in Jesus Christ our Lord, and constantly rest in the promises of God! Amen.

Max Solbrekken World Mission Box 44220 Garside, Edmonton, AB T5V 1N6;  Email: [email protected];; Blog: MSWM; Face Book, YouTube; Donations can be made by e-Transfer. Make donations to: [email protected]. God bless you!