Tag Archives: fear

When Fear and Anxiety Try To Win.

I have moments where I worry just like you. I let my thoughts run wild. I don’t discipline them and before I know it, I am awake in the middle of the night doing the exact opposite of what I tell other people to do. Anxiety fills me. Fear grips me. Stress takes over my physical and mental being. It’s an awful feeling. I long for morning, because I need a new day. A new grip on life. I need Kris to wake up and reassure me what I need reassure myself.

Last night was that kind of night for me. I tossed and turned. I let fear grip me. Hold me. Wrap its ugly hands around me. Grab hold of me like it owned me.

I finally slept the last hour. My alarm went off. I peeled open my eyes. And, I reminded myself of this scripture:

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ. 
2 Corinthians 10:5

DEMOLISH those thoughts that don’t come from Him. Take them captive. Interrogate them. Hold them captive so they can’t hold you. Remind your soul of who God is. Recall every time God proved Himself faithful to you.

Recall every stone that has piled up in your life as a memorial to the goodness, the faithfulness, and the mercy of God.

Remember every situation that looked impossible and how God grabbed you and said, “I am for you.”

Hold onto thoughts of His goodness. Hold onto His love that stretches wider and deeper and longer than anything we can imagine.

Hold onto THOSE thoughts.

Hold them tightly.

Demolish those other thoughts. Take them captive. Strip them of their power. Because, the One inside you is greater. He is truth. He is good. And, in Him, we have no fear.

This Sunday at Eagles Way, I will be opening up our new series, Silent Night, with this very message. I will preach it with as much passion as I possibly can. Because, I know what it feels like to be gripped by something that takes the wind out from under you. But, I also know what it feels like to send those thoughts back to hell. And, to rise up with a renewed confidence, a renewed mind, and renewed passion for TRUTH.

His mercies are new every morning. And, because, of those mercies, this is mind is new….and finally, it caught up with what my Spirit already knew.



Filed under disappointment, God Stuff, life, Spiritual Journey

Who You Are.

Apparently, I am not a Libra.  And, you are not who you think you are either.  In case you missed the overnight changes in Astrology, you can read about it here.  Honestly, I am not a follower of my sign, and I’m not about to debate its legitimacy with you.  A) I’m not that smart.  B)  I really don’t care.  ALL of this to share a funny text conversation with my foxy pilot:

Me:  “You’re not a Scorpio any more.  You’re a Libra!”

Kris:  “How come?  Was I born in a different month, and my momma lied?” 

Me:  “No. The Zodiac signs shifted and changed last night.”

Kris:  “Says who?  The Zodiac Czar?”

Me:  “You are all of the Zodiac signs to me, babe.”

Kris:  “Well, I hope I’m still an Ox at the Chinese restaurant.”

I swear he makes me laugh ALL OF THE TIME. 

On a more serious note.  Some of you really aren’t who you think you are.  After yesterday’s post, I was flooded with e-mails and messages from many of you asking me to pray for you. 

I did.  And, my prayers for you did not cease last night.  When I commit to pray for you, I really do.

I can’t tell you what it did to my heart to read your hurts.  Your fears.  Your struggles.  Your what ifs.  I think what broke me most were the few who really don’t see that God wants good things for them.  And, that God’s promises are as much for them as the next person.

So, some of you really aren’t who you think you are. 

But, you ARE who GOD says you are.  And, He says He loves you so much that He watched His son suffer for you.  He says you are so valuable to Him that He knows how many hairs are on your head.  He says you are such the apple of His eye that He pursues you Himself. 

He LOVES you.  And, there is nothing you can do to change that. 

May we all run after Him the way He runs after us. 

And, have a GREAT weekend.


Filed under God Stuff, Marriage, Say What?

How Does Your Heart Beat?

The nurse listened for the heartbeat.  There was nothing.  She was certain the doctor, skilled and experienced in finding those little heartbeats, would capture it.

There was nothing. 

While we knew this was not unusual, our doctor still expressed concern and ordered an immediate ultrasound. 

Kris and I waited a grueling forty-five minutes for peace of mind.  We sat quietly, but our minds could not have been louder.  What if?  What happens if we lose this baby?  Do we try again?  What’s the follow-up procedure? 

What if?

I had just written the post on Fear.  And, I was feeling it.  Those scriptures came swirling through my mind.  “When you walk through the fire, I will be there…”   

I felt a calmness in the midst of my sudden upheaval.  No matter what happened that day, His presence would never leave me.  No matter what happened, I would not stop running after my Father. 

You see, I decided a long time ago that there were no deal breakers for me following Christ. 


My heart beats for Him.  For HIS glory.  Not mine.  And, every single thing and every single person in my life are added blessings.  Because, if He never did anything else for me but give me eternity, that would be enough.

But He does more.

Because, He is so good.

Forty-five minutes passed, and we entered the room.  The technician placed the instrument on my bare belly, and we looked on a monitor and saw a vibrant, little life.

And heard the sweetest, little heartbeat.

A heart that beats for Him.

So many of you prayed.

Thank you.

We love you all,
Dusty and Kris


Filed under disappointment, God Stuff, gratitude, Motherhood, prayer

FEAR. It’s A Dirty Word.

Kris:  “Remind me to talk to your doctor Thursday about the H1N1 vaccine.”

Me:  “Haven’t we already discussed this with him?”

Kris:  “Yes, but I need more clarification.  There could be over 90,000 U.S. deaths this flu season.”

Thankyousokindly for giving me something else to worry about.  It’s not like I’m not already consumed with my Anna’s pre-school assignment on decorating her family shield.  A little Hobby Lobby here.  Some photo printing there.  It’s kind of a big deal, yes?

It’s easy to give into the ugly, four-letter word, FEAR.  And, I’m not talking about a pre-school project.  I’m talking about things that can create an emotional response to circumstances beyond our control.  If I allow it, I can downright talk myself into a fear frenzy.  I began doing just that last night while talking to my dad.  I briefly paused, and these words fell off my tongue:

“We just need to pray protection.”

Oh, well, there ya go.  Let’s invite God in.  Swell idea?  How often I make God the size of my biggest problem. 

He’s bigger.

He’s already told us what to do with our fear.  He said our fear can just go straight to hell. 

Okay, that’s not exactly what He said.  But, He did say this:

 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.  Isaiah 41:10

And this:

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.  2 Timothy 1:7 (Gotta love the KJV)

Oh, and this:

The Lord is my light and my salvation – so why should I be afraid?  Psalm 27:1

No matter what the day brings, I know I have nothing to fear.  Because, nothing can separate me from His presence.  When I walk through the waters, He will be there.  When I walk through the fire, He never leaves my side. 

And, so I say to FEAR:  You can go straight to hell. 

And, Big Mama would follow that declaration up with a little tongue talkin’. 

For real.


Filed under God Stuff, prayer

A reminder that He is Immanuel.

I know I write about my experiences in parenting, well, far too often.  But, it’s where I am.  And, I learn just as much from those experiences as my children learn from me.  I feel certain of this.  I also realize that I tend to write more about John Henry’s seemingly spiritual insights and Anna’s crimes of fashion and occasional use of profanity.  It’s not necessarily that one loves God more than the other.  Hmmm. Well, maybe just a little.  For now.  Or perhaps, one just responds to His love more than the other.  Look, I don’t have the answers here.  I’m just figuring this thing out as I go, or in this case, as I type. 

I write all of the above nonsense to say that my children teach something almost daily.  And, if it’s not a new life lesson, it’s a reminder of how God has called us to live our life.  Yesterday was one of those days.

Upon letting John Henry out of the car, I decided to pretend there was a bug around his feet.  You know.  To scare him.  ‘Cause I’m a good mother who gets a kick out of frightening her children.  Go ahead and send that Mother of the Year Award to Oklahoma, please. 

So, the story went….

“John Henry!  There is a bug crawling around your feet!”  I said frantically in a voice worthy of a daytime Emmy. 

He skirted a bit.  Then, I said, “I scared you, didn’t I?”

“I don’t get scared,” he said.  “God is always with me.”

I probably should’ve felt ashamed at this point.  After all, I was trying to scare my son and he was basically rebuking me with the name of Jesus.  {I blame my own father, because he tried those same antics with me.}  But, I just felt proud.  Then, I felt comforted.  Because, my six-year old reminded me that:

No matter how grim things look….

No matter how desperate we become….

No matter how lonely we feel….

No matter how anxious we are….

No matter how scared we are…

God is with us.  Always.  When we walk through the waters, He will be there.  When we walk through the flame, He will be there.  He never leaves us.  He never forsakes us.  He goes with us all the way to the end.  He goes with us to those terrifying doctor’s appointments.  He goes with us when we drop our child off at her college dorm for the first time.  He goes with when we start a new job.  He goes with us when we walk down the aisle and say I do.  In everything we do, in every place we go, He is with us.

So, wherever you are walking today, know that He is with you.  And, you have nothing to fear.

“Look! The virgin will conceive a child!  She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.'”  Matthew 1:23


Filed under God Stuff, life, Motherhood, parenting

What’s governing you?

Several days ago, the stock market plummeted.  Banks are in trouble.  Big time companies like AIG are being bailed out by our federal government.  What does this do to American spending? 

More than likely, it instills a bit of fear in us. 

Just like my experience on Monday with a complete stranger entering my house and trying to open windows – I felt fear.

Fear comes in many forms.  And, if we allow it, it will govern us.  We won’t give tithes or offerings, because we are fearful there won’t be enough money left over.  We stop letting our children play outside, because we are afraid of mentally disturbed neighbors approaching.  We don’t want to commit in a relationship, because we have fears of getting hurt again.  We don’t apply for that job, because we’ve been rejected before.  What if we are turned down again?  We live a life filled with anxiety, because we fear losing control.

When we let these fears govern us, we become victims and not victors.  We forget who we are in Christ.  And, we operate in fear instead of faith.  And, not only do we fail to live the life He has called us to live, but we fail to live in Him.

As a matter of fact, Satan uses fear to keep you from God’s best.  Uh huh.  Sure does.  Proverbs 12:25 says “an anxious heart weighs a man down.”  How can we be all that God wants us to be, and how can we enjoy His very best for us when fear and anxiety govern us?

Let’s take those fears and surrender them to our Heavenly Father.  Let’s give our worries to Him.  And, not take them back.  How do we do this?

Scripture is pretty clear.  6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:6-7

Are your finances causing you to live in fear?  Your children?  Do you fear failure?  Is fear governing your life – your decisions – instead of obedience to Him?  Instead of His promises? 

What do you fear?  Take that fear and nail it to the cross.  Go to Him in prayer.  And, let the peace of God that passes all understanding flood your heart and mind.  Give it to Him.  And, don’t take it back.


Filed under God Stuff, prayer

What a strange Monday.

Yesterday was.

Let’s see.  I took the kiddos to school.  Went out to breakfast with the parental units.  Took my dad to the airport.  (Mom is staying with us a few more days.  Hooray!)  I went by our office, ran a few other random errands, and headed back home.  But, when I walked into my house, I found my mom and my friend, Jennifer, locking the front door and debating their next move.

A disturbed neighborhood boy had a few moments earlier entered our house uninvited.  My mom yelled at him to leave.  He did, but immediately returned and tried to push the door back open.  Mom and Jen managed to shut the door and lock it.  That’s where I entered. 

When I saw the young man trying to open a bedroom window, I dialed 911.  This time, our 911 call would be legit.  Unlike this time.  When his efforts failed, he decided to try another window.  My big, bad yellow dog stared him down, and he turned away.  But not far away.  Only to our front porch.

Where he lied down.

Yes.  He decided to enjoy a warm, fall day on my porch steps.  After he realized I was not going to serve him up some lemonade, he went about his merry way, lurking in other neighbor’s windows.

Three police cars arrived, and one officer wrestled the poor fellow to the ground and put him in the back of his car.  My emotions vacillated between sadness for the young man and fear.  I was saddened that the boy was not being properly cared for. 

And, I was fearful to learn that he lived across the street from me.  And, my children.

Without delay, I surrendered those fearful thoughts to God.  I prayed that my Savior would capture every thought and every fear that was not from Him.  This doesn’t mean that I won’t be more aware of my surroundings.  I will.  But, I will trust in the One who says that He, “has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.”  (2 Timothy 1:7)

So, when the enemy comes at you with fear, remind him of who you are.  A child of God.  Bought with a price.  Redeemed and forgiven.  Hidden with Christ in God.  Seated with Jesus Christ.  More than a conqueror. 

You are victorious.  Because, He has made you that way.  Can I get an Amen?

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.  Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you.  I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.  Isaiah 41:10


Filed under God Stuff, Randomness

The Risk-Taker

I used to be this girl.  No, I never sat on top of private jets.  A Buick, maybe.  But never a jet.  Anna has this amazing quality in that she will pretty much try anything once.  She fears little.  Her only fears are ones that I’ve instilled in her, specifically a fear of frogs.  I understand these nasty amphibians are harmless.  I just prefer not to host a party for them in my backyard.

She is courageous for two simple reasons:  1) She believes the reward is greater than the risk, and 2) She has complete trust in her mom and dad. 

As a parent to a risk-taker, I have to keep my eyes on her almost constantly, lest she put herself in danger.  That is the tough part.  But, I also have the incredible opportunity to help her appropriately channel her willingness to jump into things that will be for her betterment.  That’s the cool part.

So, where did I lose my leap before I look temperament? 

There was a day I would go all in at the poker table.  Skydive?  Bring it on.  Had money been no object at 20, I feel certain I could have begun a successful business of some sort.  But, somewhere along the way I was no longer under my parents’ covering, mortality became more evident, and then I became a mother.  And that changed everything.

There are certain risks that I do not take out of fear of my children being without me.  Then, there are risks that I do not take because of a lack of trust. 

I can say that I trust God, but sometimes, my fears prove otherwise.  Why don’t I write a book?  Because, maybe no one will read it.  It might suck!  So, what if it does? What if I completely write some crap that never leaves a bookshelf?  What if a publishing company turns me down?  Great.  Then I have a couple hundred pages written for naught. 

If Anna is teaching me one thing it is to do it anyway – even if I skin my knees or have to go the E.R. to get my head stapled.  Not in a careless kind of way, but with the realization that the reward outweighs the risk.  And, nothing great comes out of playing it safe.

And, once we realize that we serve a God that always goes before us.  Who said that we can do all things in Him that strengthens us, then we just might accomplish some great things.

I hope I am successful in one day transferring Anna’s trust in her dad and me to the One who created her.  Then, her achievements through Him will be limitless.

Is fear keeping you from doing something?  What are you going to do about it?


Filed under life, parenting

So you had a bad day.

Let me be candid with you.  Sometimes I worry (as already established) that someone will blow my cover and everyone will know that I have days where I fall short, and I’m a far cry from a Christ-follower.  The cat will be out of the bag when you find out that sometimes I say the right things….you know, the faith things; then, I go home only to find that I’m trying to make myself believe those things.  I have days where I let stress affect me as a mom.   I have days where I struggle to “keep on the sunny side of life.”  Yesterday was one of those days.  Let’s run through the list of my thoughts and struggles yesterday.

·         My youngins know my buttons, and they pushed them.

·         I was disappointed….really disappointed. (Not with any person – but with circumstances.)

·         You know the whole “one with the spouse” thing? I was bearing some of my husband’s burdens.

·         The steps I have most recently taken have been ordered by the Lord….and I questioned them.

Pray.  Well, I did already.  I just didn’t pray with the usual fervor and faith with which I usually pray. 

So, I had a bad day.

Then, it happened.  I got into my car and one of my favorite songs was playing.  Suddenly I remembered the times in my life that were dark and He gave them light.  And, the disappointments began to fade.  Why? Because, I was reminded that no matter what – and as I have said before – no matter how messy life gets, God is good.  He is. 

So, I thought maybe these lyrics may minister to you….in case you have a bad day. 

How Can I Keep From Singing by Chris Tomlin

There is an endless song
Echoes in my soul
I hear the music ring

And though the storms may come
I am holding on
To the rock I cling

How can I keep from singing Your praise
How can I ever say enough
How amazing is Your love
How can I keep from shouting Your name
I know I am loved by the King
And it makes my heart want to sing

I will lift my eyes
In the darkest night
For I know my Savior lives

And I will walk with You
Knowing You’ll see me through
And sing the songs You give

I can sing in the troubled times
Sing when I win
I can sing when I lose my step
And fall down again
I can sing ’cause You pick me up
Sing ’cause You’re there
I can sing ’cause You hear me, Lord
When I call to You in prayer
I can sing with my last breath
Sing for I know
That I’ll sing with the angels
And the saints around the throne

So, at the end of the day, how can I keep from singing?

Jesus said, “Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows.  But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”  John 16:33


Filed under God Stuff, Spiritual Journey