Summary: First sermon in a series of stress and anxiety.

The Stress Storms of Life:

Today we will begin a series on stress and how to reduce it from our lives. First, it needs to be understood that stress and anxiety are synonymous term – meaning they can be used interchangeably.

The Bible teaches that stress/anxiety is a choice – we choose to be stressed out and by anxious. The Bible gives clear evidence of that. We will unpack these facts over the next few weeks. But today we will begin our series by examining an important event of the Apostle Paul’ life. He wrote 13 of the books of the New Testament, and in various places he writes about his life’s experiences and how they shaped and transformed him into the man he was. Some of these events were things such as his conversion and call into ministry by the appearing the Lord Jesus to him on the road to Damascus (Acts 9). He writes about the beatings and imprisonments he received (2 Corinthians 11:25; Acts 28:16; Philippians 1:14). Today we will see about his shipwreck in Acts 27.

Acts 27:15-21 (read entire text)

1. Day One: (vv.15-17)

a. Attempted to resist the storm (v. 15)

i. To head into the wind”

ii. “we have way to it and were driven along”

b. Sough to adjust to the storm (v. 16)

i. “ secured the skiff” – skiff is a lifeboat

ii. “passed ropes under the ship”

c. Prepared to endure the storm

i. Undergirded the ship  ran ropes to keep it tied together

ii. “Let the ship be driven along”

d. Application: When faced with a sudden storm, individuals strive to use personal experience and all available resources to counter the impending threat.

2. Day Two: (27:18)

a. Violent battering from the storm”

b. Began to throw the cargo overboard”

c. Application: When storms force individuals to plan for survival, non-essential aspects of life and vocation are abandoned.

i. Facial woes: cutting out of TV, phone, dining out

ii. Relational woes: skipping church, cancelling appointments,

iii. Job woes: feeling displaced, unwanted, or under –appriceted – start looking for jobs, alter schedule, food habits ,and sleep patterns

3. Day Three: (v.19)

a. Threw the ships tackle overboard

b. With their own hands

i. This was a conscious and possible life-changing or life-threatening decision. They threw away the very means by which to support and feed themselves. They three away the purpose of the boat.

c. Application: As storms continue, plans and actions may become irrational and survival attempts can become self-destructive. When we are faced with a major and life-altering stress situation, we withdraw from the people we love, we quit or jobs, file for divorce, abandon our homes and families. Basically, we get rid of everything essential in our lives, everything we have known and trusted we “throw overboard” in an attempt to survive.

4. Day Thirteen (vv.20-21)

a. V.33 says “today is the fourteenth day….” It was the day after vv. 20-21

b. “Gave up hope of being saved” (v.20)

c. Gone a long time without food (v.21)

d. Application: Prolonged stress, when dealt with outside the counsel of God, will usually lead to disabling and physical depression.

As Charles Spureon says, "I take my text, and make a bee-line to the cross." Transition to presenting the Gospel from here.

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