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Our daily Bible readings are found at Listener's Bible. You can listen to the text or read it and it will update each day. Let’s pray together: Lord, let our souls rise up to meet you as the day rises to meet the sun. Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. Father, we pray for Croatia, Burundi, Canada, Kazakhstan, Honduras and the church in these countries as well as the lost. Jesus, teach us how to live as you lived. Father, Your will be done here as it is in heaven Spirit, show us the way today May the peace of the Lord Christ go with us: wherever He may send us; may You guide us through the wilderness: protect us through the storm; may You bring us home rejoicing: at the wonders You have shown us; may You bring us home rejoicing once again into our doors. Amen Meditation Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up. Proverbs 12:25 I find it kind of funny when people post on Facebook about things kids today can’t do; like write in cursive or play outside unsupervised. They wax nostalgic about the “good old days” and take to social media to decry the plight of the youth of today… but many of these folks are grandparents. When they were kids I bet their grandmas mopped and waxed the floor every week, made cookies from scratch, and canned all their own vegetables that grandpa grew in the garden. I bet grandpa fixed the car or the tractor, kept an organized shop, and hunted meat for the table plus a whole lot more things that today’s grandparents don’t do. Grandparents of yore would likely be appalled at social media posting, cell phone toting, frozen pizza grandparents of today…yet I haven’t once seen a post about that ;) Instead, what I see is a lot of is fear and anger online. Snarky posts about this issue or that issue presented in a way that belittles anyone who might disagree or desire to add nuance to the situation. In the “old days” before the Internet, you had to actually talk directly to people to share your views. Gossip took at least a phone call or a face to face, but today we can rant like a drive-by shooting. Indiscriminately, pelting anyone online with our words without seeming regard for the consequences. But there are consequences. Our words matter A LOT! Proverbs 18:21 says that the power of life and death are in the tongue. When it comes to anxiety; we can either add to it and hype of the fear, or we can speak truth and bring peace. Online, who are you listening to? On the radio, who are you listening to? On TV, who are you listening to? When you talk with others, are you complaining, critiquing, criticizing, and tearing others down? Or are you mindful of how you speak about others? Do we guard each other’s reputations? Are we careful not to needlessly recount evil or malicious talk? Anxiety is defined as, “a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome.” Uncertainty is the very root of worry, we only worry about something when we are unsure of what will happen. The problem is anything that is in the future is by its very nature uncertain. As the old proverb says, “The only things certain in this life are death and taxes.” So unless we put our trust in something other than our circumstances we will be plagued with worry. The Christian life is an invitation to place our trust in God not the outcome of any event. As believers, we have the power to not only live a life free of worry but to lift others up, by speaking kind words. We have the power to alleviate each other’s burdens by acting with patience and wisdom. It is within our grasp to alter another person’s day, week, or even life by living as Christ did; sacrificially. So before you scroll through your Facebook feed, why not pray ask God for wisdom, “snooze”* friends who are angry, hateful, or divisive, and instead give those folks a call. Pray for the right words and an opportunity to share how their words make you feel. Offer a friendly challenge to use our power (of words) for life, not death, and love not anxiety. * This does not mean “unfriend” them, it just means you can’t see their posts for 30 days.

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