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Joyce Meyer - Overload


Joyce Meyer - Overload
TOPICS: Stress
Joyce Meyer - Overload

Well, thank you for joining me today. I believe that we're gonna have a really good time, sharing the word about stress and being overloaded. Have you ever gone to the doctor with pain, headaches, stomach problems, sleep issues, and had them tell you, "It's just stress"? You know, I did and it just made me angry. I wouldn't admit that I couldn't do everything. I mean, I guess for years, I would go to the doctor with different complaints, and they would say, "It's just stress". Well, it just made me mad. I thought, "It can't just be stress". Well, you know, we all have stress and God has prepared our bodies to handle a normal amount of it. But when we get out of balance, we will get sick, grouchy, difficult to get along with, we will explode over minor issues, and other similar things. And we also open a door for the devil.

1 Peter 5:8 teaches us that we need to be well-balanced. Because our adversary, the devil, roams about like a lion roaring in fierce hunger, seeking whom he may devour. So, when you are stressed out, out of balance, it opens the door for the enemy to get into your life, and cause you to behave in a way that is ungodly. But you know, Jesus was surrounded by stressful situations, and yet he was always at peace. We're gonna talk more about that in a minute. I have a little example I wanna show you. This is a backpack, and I'm gonna put it on here in just a minute. But we're gonna say these rocks are, you know, I get up in the morning and everything's fine. And then, let's just say that I see a little patch of grass out in my backyard, that looks like maybe it's got some kind of a fungus.

Well, that kinda bothers me. But we'll see. I mean, it's not too awfully horrible. And then, I look over and my neighbor hasn't cut their grass in two weeks, and it just looks terrible. And they really don't take very good care of their house, and that aggravates me, because that affects my house. And so, I'm carrying that around. And then let's say that I have a real big argument with my husband. "Man, he made me mad". Now, that was a little bigger and this thing's gettin' heavier here. And then, I go to work and there's been a wreck on the highway, and I sit in traffic for two and a half hours. I'm gonna be late for work. My boss is not gonna be happy.

Now, I'm worried about that. And then, I finally get to work and I can't find a parking place. I drive around, and around, and around, and because I'm late, I can't find a parking place. Well, now I'm just getting' more stressed out by the minute. And I'm thinking about all these things: "My grass is bad, the neighbors aggravating me, traffic's horrible, had a fight with my husband," on, and on, and on. Then, I get a call from the bank, my account is overdrawn. "Well, how can my account be overdrawn? I have got money in the bank". Well, obviously something's wrong, it's either wrong with my accounting, or something's wrong at the bank. But I can't do anything about it until I get home. So, now I gotta carry that around all day.

Well, then I go through my day, but I have this thing, I'm carrying this load now, all day, all day. Hours are going by, and I'm carrying this load, and it's dragging me down. You know, this is a good example of what happens when we're trying to do everything we do. But at the same time, we're worrying, and we're stressed out, got all these things on our mind, that we don't have to have our mind, because the Bible says we can, "Cast all of our care on him, because he cares for us". So, guess what? If I believe that, I can drop this load. Whoo! "Boy, do I feel better".

And you know what? If you're overloaded today, you can do the exact same thing. You can drop your load, and you can do it just that fast, and come into a place of peace. Jesus never asked us to carry the load. He said, "Cast your care on me, because I care for you". Jesus was always at peace, and yet he was rejected by family and friends. He was so good, and yet he was accused of being evil. He was never left alone by sick and needy people, who constantly wanted him to help them. He couldn't even hardly rest or eat, because people were constantly wanting him to help them. Maybe you feel like that in your own house. It's like you can't even hardly sit down, because the kids need this, and the husband needs this, and your mom calls, and you know, your just like, "Whaaaa"!

You know, his disciples needed a lot of correction. He was mentoring them to carry the Gospel to the whole world, and he only had a short time to do it. And they acted like such babies much of the time. One of his own disciples betrayed him, for thirty pieces of silver. Peter denied even knowing him three times. At a time when he needed them most, his disciples fell asleep, when he had just asked them to pray with him for one hour. And even in the midst of all this, Jesus reMained peaceful. Anytime you think about Jesus, you never think about somebody who's like, "Whaaaa," frustrated, and fretful, and worried. You know, one of the reasons was, because he knew how to walk away from the crowds, when he needed to go somewhere and pray, get refreshed, and trust his father in heaven, with every single problem that he had. Jesus understood the weaknesses of men, and he had no unrealistic expectations concerning them.

So, he wasn't even all that surprised, when his disciples did some of the things that they did, because he knew that human flesh, when it was tempted, would very often cave in. I love Philippians 4:6 and 7. I meditate on this scripture a lot, "Do not be anxious about anything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving", each one of these things are important, "Let your requests be made known unto God: and the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard and keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus". We don't have to hang on to our problems. We can pray, give them to God, be thankful. You know, one of the things that helps is, instead of being all upset about the problems you have, be thankful for the problems you don't have.

You know, maybe you're frustrated because you got a headache today, but you don't have cancer. I mean, no matter what kinda problem we have, there's always a worse problem we could have. And we could be thanking God for protecting us from that problem. Peace is so wonderful. Colossians 3:15 in the Amplified says, "Let peace (act as an umpire in your life continually) [deciding and settling with finality, every question that arises in your mind]". So, what do I do when I have a decision to make? Well, I need to not do anything I don't have peace about. We cause a lot of our own problems, because we do things that deep down inside, we already know are not gonna work out good, but it's what we want, so we do it anyway. "And be thankful", there it is again. "Be thankful (appreciative), [giving praise to God always]".

And I love this scripture, 1 Peter 3:10 and 11 in the Amplified Bible. "Let him who wants to enjoy life and see good days [good, whether apparent or not]", now, listen to this, "Keep his tongue free from evil". What we say affects our joy. "Keep his lips from guile (treachery and deceit). And let him turn away from wickedness and shun it, and let him do right" now, watch this, "Let him search for peace". See, sometimes, you have to seek peace. You gotta search for it. You can't just hope it's gonna fall on you. Be free from all, "(agitating passions, and fear, conflicts) and seek it eagerly". Boy, the Amplified Bible lays it out clear, "[do not merely desire peaceful relations with God, with your fellowman, and with yourself, but pursue, and go after them.]" three areas where we need to have peace: peace with God, peace with ourself, and peace with people. And all of those are things that you're gonna have to seek, and pursue, and pray about, and study, and make an effort to do.

There are so many things that cause stress. All the pressures in the world. Letting modern technology manage you, instead of you managing it. Saying, "Yes," to things you really don't want to do, in order to keep people happy. Well, yeah, we wanna do things that people want us to do. We should do things for people, but not if I know it's something that God doesn't want me to do. Just not trusting God, will add stress to my life. Complicating things that could have been simple. Oh, I used to be so good at complicating everything. But the simpler things are, the more powerful they are. Not getting enough sleep, will cause you to have stress. Unhealthy eating. Never getting any exercise. Exercise is a stress reliever. Worry, anger, getting involved in things you should have stayed out of.

You know, if you have stress in your life, you can't keep doing the same thing over and over, and expect anything to change. They say, "Only a fool thinks he can always do, what he's always done". If you have stress in your life, your life is not gonna change just automatically, you're gonna have to change something. The world won't have to change, so you have to change. I was complaining about my schedule one time, and God said to me, "Joyce, you made your schedule, if you don't like it, change it". You know, if you would just eliminate everything from your life, that's not bearing any fruit, you could get rid of a lot of the stress. Learn how to say, "No". I had to say, "No," to somebody this morning, and I don't imagine they're gonna like it, but I knew it was the right thing for me to do.

See, a lot of times we do what's right for everybody else, but in the process, we're killing ourselves. And I'll tell you, people will let you do it. Insanity is doing the same thing over, and over, and over, thinkin' you're gonna get a different result. I am telling you today, God wants you to know this, you can have peace, but you're gonna have to look at your life, and be willing to change some things. Matthew 11:28-30, Jesus gives us some very wise advice. He said, "Come and learn of me, if you're overburdened and overloaded, come to me. Come to me and see how I do things. I'm not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but I'm humble, gentle, meek, and lowly". Listen to this, "God will never give you more to do, than you can do peacefully".

Boy, I like that. I said that. God will never give you more to do than you can do peacefully. Boy, I wanna remember that. Next time I get all stressed out about, "Oh, I've just got too much to do"! Then I have to realize that I'm doing something that God didn't give me to do. Because it stands to reason, if God wants us to walk in peace, he's not gonna give us more to do, than what we can do peacefully. We take things on, many times for the wrong reasons. You know, there were four things that Jesus did to remain peaceful. He trusted himself and everything to God who judges fairly. He prayed. He knew when to be quiet. He didn't even bother to answer stupid questions that people asked, or defend himself against accusations, when he already knew that they would find some other reason to criticize him, no matter what he did. And he always forgave people who hurt him. He forgave Peter. He prayed on the cross for God to forgive his crucifiers. He taught his disciples to forgive.

I'll tell you something that will stress you out, is being mad at people, hating people, resenting people. You see, I had a misconceived idea. I thought I was too strong for stress. "Not me, I'm not stressed out. That's not what's wrong with me". Well, you know, I finally had to admit that, that was what was wrong with me, when a few years ago I practically fell apart. And to be honest, I still deal with some things, physical things as a result of pushing myself, and pushing, and pushing, and pushing, and pushing, until I just couldn't take it anymore. Everybody has their limits. And you have to admit what yours are. And it doesn't mean that you're weak. You're wise if you realize what your limits are, and you stick to them.

Let me talk to you about a few more things that cause stress: pressure in the world, modern technology, I think I talked about that. This is the part I wanna talk to you about, that I didn't talk to you about. Can you learn to work smarter not harder? You know, that's what I'm doing now. I'm accomplishing more than ever, and I'm not workin' nearly as hard as what I have in the past, because I'm working smarter. I'm saying, "No," to things that I really know that I need to say, "No," to. And I'm not worrying about whether or not people get mad. Anytime somebody asks you to do something, and they wanna hear, "Yes," they don't wanna hear, "No". Can you go to the bathroom without taking your phone? Examine your life and eliminate everything that isn't bearing good fruit. How much time do you spend listening to people complain, who have no intention of doing anything about their problem? How much time do you spend watching really stupid things on television? How about making decisions? You know, that's a big stressor.

In our society today, we have what I call, "Choice overload". We've got so many choices of everything, that it gets confusing trying to buy anything. The average grocery store has over 49.000 items in it. There are 29 different kinds of m&amp:ms, just m&amp:ms! I mean, when I was a kid, you had m&amp:ms, you didn't have to choose between 29 kinds. There's 250 varieties of cereal, dry cereal, 250 kinds! My goodness! Think of the different kinds of jelly, and bread, and crackers, and sinus and cold medicine. I remember one time going into a drugstore to get something for my sinuses, and I honestly, looked at so many things, and read so many labels, that I left with nothing because I couldn't decide what to get. We have choice overload. You know, I have more clothes than I've ever had in my life. How can I stand in my closet, and not know what to put on? And yet that happens. There's over 500 channels on most satellite dishes, and yet we can't find anything to watch.

You know, when we only had three channels when I was a kid, we didn't have any problem. And you know, too many choices can paralyze us. So, I wanna encourage you today, to just make a decision. Let's just say that you go to the store to get cereal, the first thing that you feel is right for you, just get it, don't even bother looking at all the rest of 'em. I learned even in decorating a home, you know, we have a tendency, we see something we really like, but we wanna look at everything in the store to make sure there's not something we like better. Well, I've learned, "I like that, I'll take that". One lady told me one time, she said, "I can't even keep up with you, you're making decisions so fast". But I tell you, making decisions when you need to make decisions, and not being confused, and double-minded, will take a lot of stress off of your life.

Make an effort to simplify your life. Don't over commit. Be committed, but don't over commit. Pray instead of trying to make things happen yourself, that only God can make happen. Don't be easily offended. Don't be touchy. Give people mercy, instead of trying to get revenge. Always believe the best of people. When you need help, ask for it. When you sin, admit it, ask for and receive forgiveness. Don't try to be everybody's best friend, because you'll end up being nobody's friend. Start today defeating stress. Now, you know, you've watched this program, and you can say, "Oh, that was nice," and then, just go ahead and live your life the same way, and be stressed out. Or you could make a decision today, that you're gonna do something about the stress in your life.

Remember, somebody else is not gonna come along and do it. You are going to need to make some changes. I wanna say it again. Your life is not gonna just automatically change, you're gonna have to make some decisions, and make some changes. And don't expect everybody to like it, because they won't. You know, one of the things that will keep you from being stressed out, is just, and I'm not trying to be rude, but just mind your own business. Stay out of other people's stuff. Don't give people advice that they don't want. Be stingy with criticism, and generous with compliments. No matter what's goin' on in your life, believe that God can work all things out for good. Laugh, laugh, laugh, and then, laugh some more. Matter of fact, I have to laugh, scientists have now found that happiness reduces stress. Isn't that amazing?

But God told us thousands of years ago, and it's recorded in Proverbs, "A merry heart doeth good like a medicine". Sometimes the scientific field and the medical field is funny. They think they've really come up with something big, and God had it in his word all along. We've all got our strong points, and we've all got our weak points. And you need to thank God for the things that he's made you strong in, and trust him for the things that you're not so strong in. And don't always be wishing you had somebody else's life. "Well, I wish I could sing like you". "I wish I looked like you". "I wish I was as thin as you". "I wish my hair was as thick as yours". I wish, I wish, I wish. Well, you know, you're not gonna look like somebody else, or be somebody else. You're you, and you're gonna have to get satisfied with you. You're gonna have to be happy with you, because you is what you have. And if there's something that you don't like about yourself, that you can change, change it. But if you can't, then be happy with yourself.

Remember, be at peace with yourself, peace with God, peace with yourself, and peace with your fellow man. If you're in a lot of debt, oppressive debt, that's causing all kinds of stress in your life, start today, don't put it off, start today, getting out of debt. Quit buying stuff you don't really need, and putting stuff on credit cards, that you don't really need. You just bought it because, I don't know, sometimes we buy things just 'cause they're on sale. I tell people, "Sometimes you've bought all this stuff, and when you need it, you don't even know where it's at". Face stress head-on. Take responsibility for the stress that you have, and don't just blame it on everybody else.
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