In searching through some old journals God continued to speak to my fear.
Eight years ago I attended a women's retreat at our church. A godly women, Vickie Kraft** was our speaker.
On my notes I scribbled the words: "What does God expect from us in crisis"...
The first thing: DO NOT BE AFRAID!
To "actively resist fear", just as I had learned from Amy fighting her voices.
"When I am afraid,
I put my trust in you.
In God, whose word I praise,
in God I trust; I shall not be afraid.
What can flesh do to me?" Psalm 56:3-4
As I read this familiar Scripture I notice the repeated words: "trust" sandwiched between "fear". When I am afraid, I will trust. And when I trust, I will not be afraid. I overcome fear with the decision to trust.
Fear doesn't have to be big to be a problem...
Fear can begin in its smallest form: worry. Vickie paints a picture in the quote above, of the path I create for other emotions and thoughts to travel when I worry. Even my smallest fears, invading my mundane as worry, require trust.
"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." Matthew 6:34
Again this familiar verse involves repeated words: worry & tomorrow. Sandwiched between worry is tomorrow. Don't worry about tomorrow, tomorrow will worry about itself. Just do today. Don't allow even a trickle of fear for tomorrow to enter your mind.
I absolutely LOVE what Vickie shared with us next,
There is no grace for your imagination.
There is grace for your reality.
When I worry about tomorrow, I am imagining what could happen. But I have NO idea what will occur 24 hours from now. Any thought I have about tomorrow's concerns is imagined. Any feeling of fear I have comes from ignoring my reality. Not being fully present.
Next time I start to worry about the boy's future selves--> STOP. That's imagined. No grace.
Start to worry about what other's think--> STOP. That's imagined. No grace.
Start to worry about how a child could get hurt--> STOP. That's imagined. No grace.
Instead be fully present. This moment, right now, is a gift. A gift of grace. It's not imagined. It's reality.
Do you struggle with worry or fear? Today when your mind starts to project and imagine what "could" happen, stop yourself, and repeat, "no grace for my imagination".
**Our women's conference speaker was Vickie Kraft, a mother of five grown children. She obtained a seminary degree from Dallas Theological Seminary after her children left home (I think one of the oldest graduates). Began Titus 2:4 ministries, wrote three books (including "Women mentoring Women") and for 14 years was our church's women's minister.