Church Mental Health Summit


anxiety & depression resilience & anger stress & burnout Apr 26, 2022


Go for a walk… instead of working on a project that I’m weeks behind in?”

Today is a beautiful Monday and I finally have a full day to catch up on a long list of to-dos.

But God was drawing me to get out to exercise.

I can tell you with certainty that it was God… because exercise is not really my thing.

Then I recalled a podcast I listened to a few weeks ago.


It was a podcast hosted by Esther Littlefield called Christian Women’s Leadership Hosted. The guest on the show that day was Marnie Swedburg.



And to be perfectly honest I can’t remember exactly what they talked about. But this morning God brought me back to something Marnie said in that episode <<CLICK HERE for link to podcast>>.

I’m paraphrasing here, but Marnie spoke about a time in her life she experienced anxiety and stress about being not having enough time to fulfill all the requirements and demands that she felt God was leading her to do.

After negotiating and rearranging her schedule she still wasn’t able to carve out enough time to get it all done.


So… she threw her hands up in surrender and gave all control of time to God.

All watches and clocks were taken off and no alarms were set.


Can you imagine?


She became reliant on the leading of the Holy Spirit to director her every step.

The only clock in the house was the trusty microwave clock in the kitchen.

Miraculously, Marnie reported that she was lead by God and was able to get all tasks accomplished when it looked like there was no humanly way possible.



God brought this back to mind when I was feeling the same struggle.

I had too much on my plate.

“God there is no way that I can get all of this done and you are leading me to exercise before I get anything accomplished?” 


God reminded me that my life is His, that He sustains my energy, He has called and equipped me for this work. 

It’s not in my strength, but it is God’s work (Phil. 2:13).

He is responsible for the success and failure of my life and Hope Made Strong so I need to relinquish control to Him.

For the first couple blocks I struggled with a lot of negative thoughts.


They were awful and I’m curious if you have ever had similar thoughts?

Things like….

Taking time for yourself first? That seems selfish.

You’re just procrastinating and avoiding work.

You don’t have time to be out walking at 9am!

Who do you think you are, some people have been at work for 3 hours now and you’re just out for a stroll?

You’re wasting valuable time. You could be getting so much more done. 


Notice how these are all negative attacks?

Yep… they were clear attacks from satan trying to distract and pull me away from what God wanted for my life at that moment.

God asked me to start my day with an activity that would fill me with energy and hope and inspiration.

As I walked with worship music playing I was able to center my mind on



God’s plan for my day.

My body felt energized.

My mind was clearer.

And those moments away from my inbox, tasks and to-do list were just what I needed.

Guess what?

I got more than I expected accomplished today.

It is now the end of the day and I have to say it was a great day.

Yes, my to-do list is still a mile long, and yes, my kids whined and complained and yes all the home and work demands are there.


But I can honestly say that the 30 min walk prepared me and sustained me for the whole day. 

And I have God to thank for that.

God wants us rested and walking in peace.

I encourage you to take a few moments to ask God what it is that He wants you to do today that will fill you up, prepare you for the day and sustain you through each challenge.


Download this list of different ideas that are commonly identified as stress relievers.

No, they aren’t all eating kale and exercising. 😉

You might even be surprised at some; boxing anyone?

Take a look at this list and then pray about it. Ask God what you need to refresh your spirit, soul and body.

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