The Part of Your Brain That Controls Anxiety Also Controls Thankfulness

shoes3I suffer from foreboding joy as a Minnesota Twins fan. I’m still a devoted fan. I still watch on average 100 games a season. But as this season ends, it will be the fourth season in a row that we finish at the bottom of the AL Central and September baseball looks like amateur baseball. I had some hope back in April only to finish in September with distaste. This isn’t the only bad run of Twins baseball. We’ve had this back in the 1980s, 1990s, and early 2000s. I’ve lived through this before. I’ve experienced the joy of our many division championships and two great World Series with the 1991 World Series declared as one of the best of all time. But this joy is tempered because we always seem to have gutter baseball before the exciting wins. I’m in gutter baseball season.

My September Twins got a rare win last night. And against the now-division-leading Detroit Tigers. One of our young and future pitchers had a game to remember. After two bad opening innings, and he would have been pulled except the team needed him to pitch longer to save the tired and injured bullpen, Kyle Gibson pulled it together and got a win.

I lead you through all this misery to give you this brilliant insight from Kyle Gibson. These are words to define your life with bravery.

“Gibson also remembered something he heard recently at chapel–the part of your brain that controls anxiety also controls thankfulness. ‘You can’t have those two emotions at the same time,’ Gibson said. ‘I said, “All right, I’m going to be thankful for where I am, go about the business and have fun with it.”’

Are you anxious today? Practice gratitude. Your brain can’t handle both.


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About Be Brave

Brenda Seefeldt began life in youth ministry in 1981. That is before the internet, YouTube, texting and even before PowerPoint. (But it was after flannel boards.) Brenda has written and shared much of what she has learned through the resource of Wild Frontier and in many youth ministry publications as she continues on in youth ministry. Brenda is a brave one. She stutters yet is a national speaker. She loves teaching so much she’s also been a substitute teacher for over 20 years. She’s brave enough to enter any classroom at a middle school. She also simply loves teaching groups, whether they are teens or adults. Due to the many years of youth ministry, Brenda has “coached” many grown teens in dating. She finds herself very opinionated on that with lots to share. Brenda loves her God-given family–four sons and 4 grandchildren. They are God-given, not birthed. That alone is a brave story, one she tells here and there as the story really belongs to her sons.

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