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Signposts: Daily Devotions

Written by Renée Miller

Saturday, August 1

Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a good word cheers it up.
—Proverbs 12:25

Many believe that we live in a culture of anxiety. The unstable economy, the high unemployment rate, the increase in crime and violence, the involvement in war, a recession that seems to go on and on can make anxiety bubble up in us like hydrogen peroxide on an open wound.

Beyond global anxiety, we struggle with inner angst and worry about our health, our soul, our body, our work, our relationships.  And, somewhere in the mix, we have to simply keep "doing" life. At times it can feel like anxiety is weighing down our hearts, keeping us from feeling the full wonder of being alive.

Then, just when anxiety pushes us toward depression or escapist behaviors meant to gloss over our worry, a good word comes our way like a leaf falling gently from an overfull tree. It may not have anything to do with our particular concern or worry, but that good word is enough to get our minds off what troubles us. Sometimes we no longer even remember what we were feeling anxious about or even that we were feeling anxious at all. We are able to gain new perspective and find hope seeping into our soul. 

Imagine if we were looking for ways to bring a good word into people's lives each day—if with just a word or phrase, we were able to lift someone's heart from feeling overwhelmed. All it takes is for us to step away from our own anxiety long enough to become that leaf that falls gently into someone else's life. Surprisingly, we may just find our own heart feeling lighter.

Gracious God, give me a good word to say to those whose hearts are weighed down with anxiety.