Are you rejoicing, praying, and giving thanks today? Paul the Apostle instructed Christians of Thessalonica to do just that – no matter what their circumstances were at any given moment. Sounds like a whole lot better way to live than whining and complaining!

So what makes that so difficult so often for so many of us? Our amygdalae.

You may not even know you have one. But in fact you have two. One in each hemisphere of your brain. This is a cross-section view. You can see one amygdala: the little green thing. It’s responsible for storing emotional memories.

And amygdalae develop differently in men than they do in women,
but we’ll save that discussion for another day.

Your amygdalae don’t interpret those memories.

They just take in and store emotional information, and send it at lightning speed to other parts of the lymbic system, which activates your autonomic nervous system. That’s a good thing because you need to be able to react fast when facing danger.

As you grow, your parents’ responses help another part of your brain (your cerebral cortex) learn to interpret the emotional information. More on that here