And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord. (Eph 5:18,19)
It may be odd that the apostle Paul contrasts being drunk with wine to being filled with the Spirit. Perhaps one of the similarities between them is for seeking joy and comfort. In days of stress or gloom, people may have a drink to soothe or forget about their problems. However, it can be harmful when we are dependent on alcohol for our inner peace. Drunkenness leads to ruin. As believers in the living God, we can find joy, peace, and comfort by being filled with the Spirit.
A sound heart is life to the body, but envy is rottenness to the bones. (Prov 14:30)
In this modern age, life moves at a fast pace and can be fairly stressful. We often say, “I’m stressed out!” Physical stress and fatigue are easier to manage. A good night sleep usually helps. It is the emotional stress that keeps us restless throughout the night. Emotional stress comes from our negative feelings: anger, worry, fear, jealousy, and sorrow. Emotional stress can be destructive with the consequences of: broken relationships, physical illnesses, the inability to keep a job or to work with others, and violence.
Stress is a part of life. Stress becomes anxiety when stress gets inside us. Anxiety can dominate our lives, steal our joy, and cripple our ability to function. A calm heart, a heart at peace, is thus precious. Continue reading