February 2, 2020

When my brother and I were little boys (back in the 1950’s) we loved to watch a T.V. series called “Sea Hunt”.  It starred Loyd Bridges, and the show was mostly about underwater scuba diving. It was a very adventurous show for us to watch.  In the show, Mr. Bridges would be narrating what was going on while he was under water. Often he would explain what would happen if you ascended to the surface of the water too fast.

He would tell his viewers that you would get the bends. That’s when the nitrogen in the diver’s blood would begin to boil.  It was very painful and dangerous, he said.  It could even be fatal if one didn’t get to a decompression chamber as soon as possible.  The decompression chamber was an airtight room where operators of the chamber could regulate the pressure of the diver and slowly stabalize the pressure in their lungs.

I think that today in America, and probably all over this great earth, people are under tremendous pressure.  Humans need to be depressurized. I guess saying we are stressed or experiencing anxiety would be appropriate synonyms. But you get the point.

Sometimes things are going on in our lives and, yes, our blood boils.  And we try to fix that problem in many different ways.  Some are appropriate, but many are not.

In the military, quite often the soldiers will be sent somewhere for R and R. That stands for rest and recuperation. Our bodies and our minds need rest and recuperation sometimes. That’s one way of decompressing.

This problem of stress, anxiety and worry is dangerous too.  It can have serious health consequences, and it can even be fatal.

In the Bible, there is a great story that takes place when Jesus comes back to Bethany to raise Lazarus from the dead.  Lazarus had two sisters, Mary and Martha. They were worried sick about so many different things going on in their lives at the time.  One of their problems was, they were grieving.  As serious a problem as grief is, Jesus told them they were worrying about too many things.  He went on and told them they should be concerned about one main thing in their lives.  And that was to serve and please Him.

What are we grieving about around the world today.  And how are we dealing with it?

I know many people taking anxiety drugs of some kind, legal or illegal. Some people turn to cigarettes or alcohol.  Some even eat too much food. We call it comfort food.  Some people turn to illicit sexual behavior.

The results of all our homemade remedies and self-medicating, can be devasting. Many have ended up going to rehabilition facilities where they can detox.  Even some churches and businesses send people off on retreats to help them cope with their problems.

As I get ready to publish this post, all of America is traumatized by an impeachment trial that has been going on for months.  The U.S. Senate has barely agreed not to call additional witnesses to testify against the president. He will probably be acquitted this week.

Or country right now is very much divided and polorized.  We are experiencing national grief.

During times of stress, people will try anything to find relief.  I read a study on drug rehab recently and the researchers concluded that we were not so much a country of drug users as we are simply a country trying to escape the realities of life.  People looking for relief.

So, what is the right way to find relief from our problems, our worries? Jesus said to cast all your worries on Him for He cares for you.

Unfortunately, the Pew research group recently published a report that during this last decade, fewer people are identifying as religious.  Especially as being Christian.  But since fewer people are seeking religion for their problems, they turn to other things.  For example, sports.  It’s a national past-time. Today is Super Bowl Day.  I won’t be watching.  I haven’t watched a Super Bowl in many years, or any other sports event for that matter. Sports is okay as entertainment if one doesn’t elevate it to a religion.

Years ago, I read a book by Norman Cousins.  He wrote the book in 1979 and it was titled The Anatomy of an Illness.  He tells in the book how he had been diagnosed with a debilitating disease, which was very painful.  But he discovered he could find periods of relief by watching funny videos  and movies on his television.  He did a lot of research on this and learned that laughter causes the body to produce hormones similar to morphine.  Laughter brought him relief. His study was eventually published in a major medical journal.

We all get stressed out from time to time.  We experience all kinds of trauma and grief.  The Bible refers to these events as trials.  We are told they are common to man. You are not going through anything in your life that others have not experienced too.

Let’s depressurize the right way. Spend time with your family and friends.  Let’s laugh together, let’s love together, and let’s pray together.  That’s the right way, the only permanent way, to depressurize.

God Bless You,
Spencer Plumley