Vital signs- Sunday, October 11th, 2020

”Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:6-7‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

Between the news, comments on social media, and general anxiety all around, it's easy to live on a steady diet of fear and worry. If you tried to live on a steady diet of potato chips and sugary drinks for a few weeks, it wouldn't go well. Eventually, the lack of nutrition would catch up to you. The same is true of consuming too much fear. If that's all we are consuming, it will eventually consume us.

It's typically not just one article or news report that gets us anxious. It's the cumulative effect of all of the media added up. Fear sells. It drives us to action and keeps us watching. That's why the media, politicians, and advertisers use it. But, little by little the negativity and concern begin to consume us. We wonder why we don't feel strong when we're living on junk food. When it comes to the health of our hearts and minds, garbage in leads to garbage out.

When all of the worry and all of the fear have accumulated, it may be time for a detox. Step away from the news, social media, and anything else that feeds the fear for a while. Give your heart and mind a break. Detox from the fear. Then replace it with something better: replace it with faith.

That's what today's verse encourages us to do. Let go of anxiety and replace it with God's love and peace. Let go of the fear load you've been consuming by giving it to God through prayer. Ask for his help. Remind yourself of God's faithfulness in the past and thank Him for it. He hasn't changed. He'll be faithful now. He promises peace if you'll give your anxiety to him.

Take a day, or two, or ten, to step away from the fear that accumulates because of what we are consuming. It'll all be there when you get back (if you decide to go back!). But for now, limit your intake of the fear. Increase your intake of remembering God's faithfulness. I'm certain you'll like the results.

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