What the Bible Says about Dealing with Anxiety

I have a stressful job. In fact, U.S News & World Report’s 2022 survey ranking the top 25 most stressful jobs lists the job of a lawyer as the second most stressful job in America. On top of that, I am a trial lawyer, which is by far the most stressful of lawyer jobs.

There are many reasons being a trial lawyer is stressful, including the public speaking and arguing and that millions of dollars can be at stake, depending on how well one performs. It’s a lot of responsibility. I once lost 20 pounds during a two week trial, and it wasn’t because I was working out more.

Someone else who knew something about stress was the Apostle Paul. Paul was imprisoned, beaten on multiple occasions and often in danger of being killed, was stoned, shipwrecked three times, and once spent 36 hours floating in the open sea, wondering whether he would be rescued or drown. See 2 Cor. 11:23-25.

In addition to these external stressors, Paul had the daily pressure of responsibility for the churches he had planted or oversaw. 2 Cor. 11:28. It’s hard to imagine another person, save Jesus, who has lived a more stressful life than Paul.

Here is what Paul said about how to deal with stress:

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On Doing Your Work Wholeheartedly

The other night, I ate dinner at the hotel across the street. I ordered “The Gobbler,” which. as you guessed, is their version of the turkey sandwich. When it arrived, I was immediately disappointed. It was one of those triple-deckers, with an extra piece of bread in the middle, all-in-all about 5 inches thick.

They would have had to call the local fire department for the Jaws of Life to pry my mouth open wide enough for me to get a bite of this sandwich.

So there I sat trying to figure out how to get what should have been a simple turkey and cheese sandwich into my pie hole. Was I really supposed to eat it with a knife and fork?

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On Diverting Astroids and Jesus’ Return

So, today for the first time in history, man intentionally hit an astroid with a projectile and altered its course. Humanity will now breathe a sigh of relief knowing man has a fighting chance against the greatest threat to global annihilation.

When I heard the news today, my mind went to a completely different place. I thought, what if 1,000 years ago, we had told Christians that before Jesus returned we would be able to launch a rocket 7 miles into space and intentionally hit an astroid less than 200 yards wide with enough force to alter its course.

I believe most Christians would have said that was impossible, either because the necessary technology was inconceivable or that by the time it took mankind to achieve such technology, Jesus would have already returned. Yet, here we are.

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Early Christian, Medieval Travel Journal-Epilogue

Painting of Savonarola at San Marco Convent

As we have slipped back into our lives at home, I’ve thought through what we read, saw, and learned related to our Early Christian, Medieval Travel Journal tour.

The first two three hundred of the years of the Church was marked most conspicuously by persecution. We discussed some of those first century martyrs, including Ignatius who gave the ultimate proof of his discipleship in the Colosseum in Rome. After the Apostle Paul addressed in his New Testament letters some of those teachers who were painting outside the lines, with the exception of Gnosticism, we don’t hear much about heresy during the first three hundred years of the Church. Never was the Church more united than when it was most persecuted.

Constantine the Great’s vision, conversion, and his victory over Maxentius at the Milvian Bridge changed everything. The Church was finally free to worship in the Roman Empire, and more than that, the full support of the Roman Emperor, who assisted in the building of new churches and baptistries and in restoring to Christians and churches what had been taken from them during the persecutions that preceded Constantine.

But with that new freedom, dissension suddenly became a luxury the Church could seemingly afford. Heresies like Arianism, which had been simmering beneath the veneer of Christianity’s public face to the empire now bubbled to the surface. Others followed, Donatism, Pelegianism, and Nestorianism are just some examples.

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Early Christian, Medieval Travel Journal-Day 14

Re Nero in Florence–the proprietors of this store are obviously not history buffs

We packed our bags for the last time this morning, and it was nice to be able to close the suitcases without sitting on them. The strategy of taking old clothes and leaving them behind is a winner. I personally left long pants, a pair of shorts, multiple old shirts, two golf hats, and a pair of shoes.

I also feel that being able to get rid of old clothes demonstrates a rejection of the materialism of which Americans are so often accused. It also made a lot of room in our luggage for all our purchases from Rome and Florence.

I meant to mention in an earlier post that one of the stores we saw in Florence, but didn’t shop at was Re Nero. As you can see from the pic above, the items in the store are made in Italy, just like Nero. I also hear that all non-Christian shoppers get a 6.66% discount on their purchases. Just kidding, but seriously, the proprietors of this store are obviously not history buffs.

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