Over the years I’ve gotten a lot better with learning how to just relax and enjoy life, thanks to maturity and life experience, BUT most of all, thanks to the Lord who has seen me through every challenge, struggle, obstacle, and test. It seems like the longer I live and the more I experience, the more I see the Lord working on my behalf, constantly reminding me to cast my cares (1Peter 5:7) and keep my chill. This is the BEST and truly ONLY way to live.
When I was younger, I would sit in church and watch folks cry, shout, jump, run, and dance all throughout the service. I NEVER could undestand why, but frankly it was my favorite part about going to church because it gave me something to laugh at – SERIOUSLY. LOL. But after over 10 years of consistently being in church, progressing through various life experiences, and growing spiritually, I FULLY understand the tears of joy shed and the shouts belted out in praise of the Lord. After all these years, I’ve become one of those people – I can’t tell you how many moments I have hollered in joy, danced, ran, and just cried in the presence of God, overwhelmed in awe of who He is and how powerful his mighty hand is.
Jesus came that we may have life and have it more abundantly (John 10:10). That abundant life comes with much peace, which is the complete opposite of worry, anxiety, torment, and fear. In fact, peace is a fruit of the spirit…Joy is too (Galatian 5:22). In other words, when we accept Jesus into our hearts as our Savior (Romans 10:9-10), we open ourselves to be filled with His Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 5:5), which allows Him to abide in us, and us in Him (John 14:15-17). This gives us the keys to every tool we need to live victorious, healthy, peaceful, and prosperous lives.
Human beings were never designed to live in worry and stress. Of course a certain level of stress is normal (and even healthy) because it drives us to live – constantly developing, evolving, and moving forward through life; BUT stress that robs us of our peace and joy, and induces illness is NOT BY ANY MEANS HEALTHY OR NORMAL. This type of stress is toxic. So many scientific studies have shown a strong correlation between excessive toxic stress and numerous diseases, such as cancer and hypertension (just to name a couple). This type of type of stress is ANTI-CHRIST!
God does not want us to live in a consistent state of worry, confusion, chaos, stress, strain, etc. We were called to live in peace (Colossians 3:15). Now, this is indeed easier said than done, especially if worry and anxiety has become our default due to the various, multiple stressors of life. The good news is we have an Advocate, the Cornerstone, Jesus, who gave His life so we no longer have to live by the dysfunctional standards of this world, overwhelmed by stress with no consistent peace and joy. When we accept Jesus into our hearts, we live life by the Spirit, which gives us the ability to keep calm during the storms of life, and in perfect peace in the midst of chaos (John 14:26-27, Isaiah 26:3) .
I could spend all day reflecting on all the times I wasted worrying when I could have (and should have) been on chill – just relaxing and enjoying life. The craziest (and most illogical) thing is worry and anxiety change ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, and we know this (Matthew 6:25-33). When I revisit every moment I wasted worrying about a situation or circumstance, I realize that everything has always worked out – I realize NOTHING IS, EVER was, and WILL EVER BE WORTH WORRYING ABOUT. Period. I wish I could go back and replace all the times I wasted worrying with the peace and joy I should have been resting in instead. I’ve gotten so much better with practicing Philippians 4:4-7. I’m not going to say I NEVER worry, get anxious, become agitated, and lose my cool from time to time, but I can certainly say that I’ve learned the power of praying about my concerns, releasing it all to the Lord, and walking away free, trusting and knowing that He’ll always work everything out for the best – far beyond what I can understand.
This is the CHILL FACTOR. More gratitude, peace, and joy = less worry, chaos, and stress. We were made for peace.