SATURDAY APRIL 21
Activity: Snuggle an animal.
Oil: Lavender or Peace & Calming. Apply to yourself and enjoy the scent together.
Um, because they’re cute! Seriously, though, playing with or petting an animal can increase levels of oxytocin in the brain. Oxytocin works as a neurotransmitter in the brain (the “love” hormone) and plays a role in bonding, trust, empathy, and generosity. Snuggling your furry friends can also decrease production of cortisol, a stress hormone you really want to keep in check.
So, we know this – it is categorically NOT a surprise to hear that receiving the comfort of an animal can help us reduce our anxiousness and level our mood. Therapy dogs and emotional support animals can really make a huge difference for people, enabling them to function in society and better enjoy life. From Alzheimer’s patients to kids with autism, to individuals fighting cancer, the therapeutic use of animals makes a world of difference!
Some fun links if you want to read more:
What Does Scripture Say?
1 John 4:11-12 – If God so loved us, we ought also love one another. If we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.
Whether man or beast, we ought also to love one another. My husband and I joke that our dog’s favorite Scripture is Proverbs 12:10, “a righteous man cares for the needs of his animal”. hahah! Legitimately, though, we show our regard for life by how we treat Creation. When the Lord God abides in you, his love overflows from you to others. As it overflows and we get to demonstrate that love, something shifts in us. That oxytocin/bonding neurotransmitter floods our brain. We gain empathy and generously show that our love is trustworthy.
Obviously, this doesn’t apply just to animals, y’all. Though, often animals are easier to love than humans, our call is the same. Love God. Love others.
Is fear keeping you from doing that? Hurt? Pain from past relationships?
Release it to Jesus, friends. Let his love abide in you and be perfected in you.