Gen 43:23-24 "Relax. Don't be afraid," the household manager told them...The manager then led the men into Joseph's palace. He gave them water to wash their feet and provided food for their donkeys.

I think many of us need to hear these words today: "Relax. Don't be afraid." In the midst of a chaotic world where the intensity of life seems to be at a peak, stress levels are high and everyone is enduring a pandemic with confusing and seemingly worsening information, the words "Relax. Don't be afraid." are something we need to hear. As God's children it is up to us to speak these words to others. God knows everything that we are dealing with. None of this chaos is a surprise to Him and in His ever present voice He whispers to us "Relax. Don't be afraid."

To deal with the fears that try to take over it's especially important that we take time with God. Get your Bible out every day and read about His promises. Spend a few minutes thanking Him for being with you every day. Give Him your cares, your worries. And ask God to show you how you can spread the message "Relax. Don't be afraid." There are people all around us that desperately need to hear this message.

Living with the kind of stress we have all had over the last year is not good for us. Our bodies weren't meant to endure extended periods of stress like this so it's important that we develop some habits that keep us healthy during this time. Get some exercise to help lower your body's stress hormones and release endorphins to improve your mood. Take a brisk walk outside or look on YouTube for a variety of exercise classes you can do at home. Pay attention to your diet. Omega-3 fatty acids (found in fish) has been shown to reduce anxiety symptoms. Green Tea may also reduce anxiety by increasing serotonin levels. Reduce your caffeine intake as high doses can increase anxiety. Watch a funny movie - laughter can help reduce stress too.

Take care of your own stress levels so that you are able to help others and communicate God's message. "Relax. Don't be afraid."

Mark 5:36 But Jesus overheard them and said to Jairus, "Don't be afraid. Just have faith."



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