If reading or watching certain things causes you to feel stressed, anxious, upset, angry, or worried, it is okay to “fast” from those things.
Why let someone or something rob me of the peace of Christ?
If scrolling through your social media feed involves you seeing a lot of people arguing and being upset with each other and then you feel upset or you just tend to feel jealous of other people’s lives if you look at social media, you can stop.
You can limit yourself to 10 minutes per day on social media. Or you can only check the feeds of certain people who encourage you. You can choose to fast from social media for a week or two. Or a month. You can close your account, if needed. Or set up certain friends’ feeds to not show as you scroll if you know that person’s posts will be a temptation to react in ways that aren’t pleasing to the Lord.
If watching or reading the news stresses you out, you don’t have to spend hours consuming that information every day. Ask your husband or a close friend to let you know if there are important things you really need to know. But consider taking some time away from the news, if needed.
You may love to know what is going on and want to pray for world leaders, countries, and current events. But if you are spending a lot more time reading people’s thoughts, wisdom, and opinions and not sitting at the feet of Jesus, you could get into trouble with worry. I know I can!
If reading certain things creates a feeling of resentment in you and dissatisfaction with your real life, your husband, your kids, your house, your job, etc… Maybe you could cut those things out.
For example, if you consume romantic literature or movies and then resent your husband for not acting like the romantic lead in a fictional scenario, maybe those things are not healthy for you.
Or if you watch a home improvement show and then hate your house and current life situation, maybe that’s not the best way to spend your time. Why not rather focus on gratitude for what you have right now and making the best of it?
Friends, Neighbors, and Coworkers
If you realize that when you hang out with certain people, you end up arguing a lot, feeling upset, gossiping, or complaining, maybe it would be wise to change what you are doing.
If you can’t keep yourself from changing your attitude and actions, there are times when it could be wise to limit your contact with people who encourage or tempt you into sin like disrespecting others, hating others, tearing others down verbally, etc…
God’s Wisdom for Us
“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive. 1 Cor. 10:23
“If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to depart into hell.” Matt. 5:29-30
Jesus is not saying to literally cut off body parts, rather He is saying if something continually trips you up, (going to a place where alcohol is served, being online with a computer with no accountability, hanging out with a friend who hates your husband), get rid of the stumbling block that trips you up and leads you into temptation.
Let’s seek to get rid of toxic input into our lives as much as we can and feed ourselves healthy spiritual food.
Healthy spiritual input includes things like reading the Bible, spending time with a godly mentor, prayer, praising God, thanking God, serving others, spending time in nature, obeying God, etc…
Also, it is wise to take good care of your body. Your body needs sleep, a healthy diet, and proper exercise to function well. You feel better when you take care of yourself. No one else can do this for you.
When you are spiritually and physically healthy, rooted in Christ and full of His peace and joy, then you can be a huge blessing to your husband, children, and others around you.
You are ready to be an instrument of God’s peace to pour His abundant Life into others’ lives.
If you are hormonal, exhausted, sick, grieving a significant loss, or in a lot of physical pain, these times can be even more important to put a filter on the input you are receiving to reduce your stress and increase your peace.
Are there things you have to sometimes avoid in order to have more peace in your life?