Subtle Signs of Stress


I’m a pretty calm person (which means I internalize my stress). And the telltale signs of that are I get this pain in my neck when stressed. Yes, it’s an actual, not a figurative, pain. Doctors say it’s an ulcer on my vocal chords. And it’s baaaaack.

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Why so stressed? My son just graduated from high school (yea!) so there was a lot to do, but that was pretty easy. Company came in; that was fun, but kind of high-maintenance.  (and we had tornado scares while they were here…an F-3 actually hit a nearby town, causing lots of damage.) So, here’s the real stressor, Grant wants to join the Marines and go to Iraq. I’m not dealing real well with that one. I’m praying that God will help me to live life with an open-hand, and I’m trying, but I don’t think the problem’s in my hands–it’s in my neck. Gulp.

Work has been busier than ever. The good thing is our managing editor had a precious baby boy. The tougher thing is filling in for her. She’s fabulous so stepping back into a hands-on role (on top of other responsibilities) has piles of unfinished work and unanswered emails accumulating. And I think there’s some kind of weird fungus on my keyboard. No time to clean it. Gulp.

We leave for vacation in a couple weeks–in a rented RV to Yellowstone–while gas is climbing over $4 per gallon. And I think it gets like two miles to the gallon. Big gulp. Looking forward to a break, but not sure it’s going to be an easy trip. Packing, cooking, cleaning, unpacking. I’m adding to my stress just thinking of all the details.

So I’ll just keep swallowing my antacids and trying to take deep breaths–not gulps. Say a prayer for God’s peace to flood my life if you read this. That’s what I long for.

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About Author

Christine Yount Jones

Christine has more than 26 years of children’s ministry experience. She is the Executive Editor of Children’s Ministry Magazine, has authored many books and articles on children’s ministry, and serves as Group’s Children’s Ministry Champion. She’s responsible for development and innovation of new resources.

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