Mar 29

Congratulations! You are facing fear.

I’ve been congratulated for many things over the course of my 45 year  life. A good report card. Getting married. Having a baby. Buying a new home. Getting a new job. A job well done. Winning a game.

Yes, I’ve been congratulated for various accomplishments, but I don’t think I’ve even been congratulated for facing fear . But I kind of think I should. Don’t you?

I want to take a moment and celebrate with you because you have decided to face fear too!  CONGRATULATIONS!  We can’t conquer fear until we actually decide to face our fear.

So here we are, already achieving Step #1, Facing our fear.

How does it feel?

SCARY!  LOL!

I’m joking about the scary part of course, well kind of.

The truth is, facing fear is a little scary. It takes courage. It takes guts. It takes honesty. It takes action. I’m so proud of all of us for taking this action by signing up to do this Bible study.

If you are used to living with fear, don’t expect it to go away automatically. It will take time as you learn to place God’s Truth in your mind and heart to replace the fear/uncertainty/doubt/ you are used to having. It takes practice.

Practice. Football teams must practice if they ever expect to win a game. Artists must practice drawing/painting/sculpting/singing/playing music  if they ever expect to achieve greatness. Students must practice their multiplication facts if they ever expect to win the math game in school. (Hayley Grace told me to put that one in!)  Anyway, you get my point.  Just like with anything, by practicing something we tend to get better at it.

Practice spending daily time in God’s Word. Make time for your Bible study. Don’t allow distractions or busyness to get in your way. And especially don’t let fear block you from moving forward. Fear be gone! We got places to go where you aren’t invited!

Here is a letter from your Father. Listen to what He has to say to you about fighting for your faith and letting go of your fear.

Beloved Princess,

It’s time to surrender your fears, your insecurities, your pain, and even your loved ones completely to Me. I want your whole heart and mind and soul to be worry-free. I want your complete trust so you can focus on your faith and be free of the spirit of fear controlling you. Give up the fight of trying to figure it all out. Don’t let your circumstances hold your heart hostage or cause you to lose your confidence in Me. I am asking you on this day to answer this one question: In whom do you place your trust?

Love,

Your trustworthy King

****from Freedom For His Princess, by Sheri Rose Shepherd

 

So, how are you doing ladies?  How’s the first week going for you?  Leave me a comment and let me know!

And again, let me congratulate you! You are doing a good thing!

Blessings,

Melissa

 

 

Melissa

Comments

  1. On Monday we lost a beloved uncle to a sudden heart attack. We had his funeral yesterday. For the first time I came away from a funeral feeling uplifted. I KNOW he is in the presence of our Lord. We celebrated a life well lived and it is a celebration when we know someone knows the Lord as their Savior! Christ gave the family peace and instead of fear and anxiety I know our Lord will see us through each day. Your study came at just the right time!

    • Donna B says:

      Praying for you and your family. And praising God that He filled you up with His peace and His comfort.

  2. Last night I was faced with naming a few fears in my life. I confessed to my husband “some” of the feelings I had toward his mom regarding stresses she is putting on him and our family. I expressed the wonder I am feeling participating in this study with you wonderful women of God and the feelings of uncertainty. The possibilities to serve God through the things I am learning and realizing the depth of commitment I have to do whatever He asks of me…even if it hurts.

    We have dealt with a troubled, suicidal young adult this week that could possibly be a “regular” in our household. I asked myself last night if I had enough faith to love him no matter what even if my family was hurt by loving him. My first response was ‘NO’, protect my family at all costs. Then inside me I heard the voice, you know the one, “I’ve got this. You’re family is MY family. If it goes bad, I have this. You will love this young man, until he is MINE.” I looked at my husband with tears in my eyes and said YES, I can lead my family through loving this young man into the Kingdom. This young man reminds me so much of my husband when we first met. I lived through that and prayed I wouldn’t have to do it again. Now my first daughter has an opportunity to grow through the same thing I did. Scary is a very good word for facing this fear.

    I am praying for courage to face these fears with God’s help. I am ever thankful for this group of women to support me and our family.

    • Donna B says:

      God,
      I thank you for Teresa and the boldness that you have given her to share her heart with this group of women. Protect them. Guard their hearts and thoughts. Cause them to focus on you. I pray specifically for this young man and his heart. I would pray that you would draw Him to you. Fill him with you and cause him to reach out to you and not to suicide. Cause him to make that right choice of choosing life over death.

      Help Teresa and her family love this young man no matter what. Show them how to love him unconditionally, Show them how to love and care for him through your eyes. Direct their steps. Fill them with your discernment. Protect the mind of their daughter. Allow this young man to see Jesus in and through this family. Use Teresa and her family to be difference makers in this young man’s life for your kingdom.

      God, meet this young man at his point of need! In Jesus’ name. Amen.

  3. Enjoyed the Prayer from our King as well. Especially need to commit to “Give Up The Fight of Trying to Figure it All Out”… I deal withthat all during the day but especially at night when I try to go to sleep. I swear my mind wants to figure out “what did I do wrong today, why was so-n-so treating me weird at work, what will I do to get this done tomorrow, and next week, etc.” I’m so glad to be in this study and can’t wait to refer back to these posts (I’m making a screen shot of each one I put to see my Faith grow over the next several weeks).

    Happy Friday!

  4. I’ve only been through chapter one but WOW! I don’t think it could hit home anymore than this.
    For generations in our family the oldest child has been killed. Including my older brother. I have my first baby. I fear the swimming pool, I fear sickness for her, I fear traveling but most of all I fear when she is not with me. I thought I was in control. But come to find out, even when she is with me, God is in control! My mom has been begging to take my baby girl (almost 3) home for a few days which is about 400 miles away. I have anxiety about it and have for weeks, because Monday is the big day! My daughter is SO excited! And secretly I’ve been trying to talk her out of it!! Saying things like “aren’t you going to miss mommy?” “you should just stay home with mommy!”
    Yesterday I read chapter one, and I cried all the way home and prayed, and I have a 45 minute drive! I know it is going to be a process, but fear has been controlling my life, and not just with my daughter. I can remember being a child and people telling me I worry too much . . . I’m ready to trust. Bless you all for taking this journey, and thank you Melissa. Praising God for leading me to this.
    I know next week will still be tough but with his strength I know I can do it.

    • I can so relate to you Amanda! Thank you for opening up and sharing your fears. I too have a 3 year old, and you are doing better than I am–my Mom lives about 8 hours away from me, and though she REALLY wants my daughter to visit I haven’t allowed her to do so yet. I’ve been trying to turn my fears over to God, but have to really watch the bungee cord–I tend to give him my fears only to pull them back to me.

      In Feb my daughter was diagnosed with severe allergies to all nuts, grass, and fire ants. I actually skipped church for several weeks scared that she might get into something that she wasn’t supposed to have–honey nut cheerios are a snack of choice at church for the older children. Sad that for weeks I let Honey Nut Cheerios control my life rather than trusting the one–My God that truly IS in control of my life.

      Hang in there…any step forward is a huge success! With God all things are possible!

      • Thank you Kyndra! It helps knowing I’m not alone in feeling this way about my baby! Your encouragement means a lot!! Thank you for sharing your story, I am sure it is very hard with the allergies, bless her heart, and yours! God is in control and will take care of her :) I can completely relate!
        All day long I have had to repeat this to myself . . . God is in control, the devil is just trying to lure you away. And then I think, what if it’s really God saying don’t send her. . . And I’ll doubt myself again. What a battle!! I am praying we are going to work through with the strength of God! ALL OUR TRUST IN GOD :)

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuuLBPOYcI8

          This is a link to Natalie Grant’s “Your Great Name” –I think this is my theme song for this study!

        • Hi Amanda, I too know exactly what you are going through. My son is 13 and I can count on one hand how many times he has spent the evening away from us. The sad thing is, is that this is exactly where Satan wants us to be. Stuck in fear! One day I came across one of God’s truth that says (paraphrased):You watched (enter your childs name)as he/she was being formed in utter seclusion, as (your childs name)was woven together in the dark of my womb. You saw (childs name) before he/she was born. Every day of (childs name)life is recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed”! In other words my son’s days have been numbered by God and whether he is with me, my husband or my mother, it is God who controls his time here. This lifted a huge weight off my shoulders. I have tried to control every circumstance when it comes to my son and really God is in complete CONTROL. All we can do is live by example and teach our kids what God asks of us. Aside from doing that, It’s already been determined. Praying that you find comfort in these truths! I am sure beginning to.
          Love to you!
          Jill

  5. Michele Caséca says:

    I am trying real hard to face my fears today! I´m in the midst of really big challenges, and they all scare me to death!
    Great time for Micca´s book!

    Thank you for the amazing post, Melissa.

    Mi

    • Donna B says:

      Michelle,

      Praying for courage and boldness for you as you face your fears. Praying for God to fill you with Himself and that He will increase your faith in Him as you face those fears. Praying he comes alongside you and walks with you.

      Donna B

  6. Carol Bruntlett says:

    Well I started a new job not use to do the early shift like being there at 6:00 a.m. And my first day all the way to work on the drive I said I am trusting you Lord and I kept saying You are my Refuge, You are my strength, You are my fortress, You are my hiding place and I know I can’t make it thru this day without You I need You in my life Lord You are the only one that can get me thru this day.
    So with God I can do it and face the days, there are days I want to give up but as long as my Jesus is holding me I will get thru it
    This was an awesome post
    Thank you Melissa
    Carol

    • Carol, love this! I’m going to memorize these truths and repeat them often. So comforting! Thanks for sharing.
      Jill

      • Carol Bruntlett says:

        Hi Jill
        Your welcome after work today I thanked God for getting me thru the day and helping me thru my 4 days just started working there.
        I am praying to be able to touch one life with His Love
        Carol

  7. Suanja S. says:

    Melissa Thank You for this study and Micca for writing this book. I’m not sure if this book would have been on my radar without the online bible study. I feel God speaking to me clearly through this study. I have always been an anxious and woerisome person by nature. I have besn growing in confidence,in faith and in God by leaps and bounds before starting the study. I have been amazed at how a lot of the scriptures that Micca shares have been confirmation of things God has already been shining a light on in my life. I am stepping outside of my box of fear and now setting out to face something that I a,great at, and not by my own account ans admission, but friends, family and professors too and that is to write. I’ve always known I waa good and I have the passion for it, but I’ve struggled with the thought of ‘not being good enough.’ Well my reality is that I will never know if I am or not if I don’t put myawld out there and try. Cheers to faxing fears. Thanks again!

    • Jennifer Rasor says:

      Hi Suanja!

      I, too, have always wanted to write but have a fear of not being good enough or not being able to finish what I start. I will pray for both of us to give that fear over to God and let Him do his perfect work in us. If it is His will for us to write then He will guide us and help us to succeed! Maybe we should hook up w/ She Speaks!

      God bless you!
      ~Jennifer

  8. So, week 1 has been a handful for me! Besides a lot of late nights due to shouffering kids to various extra-curricular activities, I’ve been hit head on with probably one of my biggest fears since December….getting that full-time job in the teaching field for this fall. Let me back up a minute…I finished my B.A. in December in Elementary Education K-9, but because I finished it out of my state I have my State’s tests to take and pass before my paperwork can come from the college to my State’s office of education. Easy right? NOT! I’m not a test taker by nature..I can write you a paper as far as the sky, but I do not do well with test taking. I have passed some of the tests but not all of them.. but the catch is my state only allows you to take them 5 times! I’m scared! I know that God has called me to finish this chapter of my life and HE has a special purpose for me…and I truly believe it’s to teach! But, I go in 2 weeks to take a part of my tests over again and this is time 3. I keep telling myself that this is a test in more than one sense…God is using this for a bigger purpose…He wants me to rely on HIM and not myself..but that all consuming fear still creeps up when I’m least expecting it! And I fall back on my knees AGAIN!

    • I know how you feel. I have never been a test taker either. I know the material but I doubt the answers during the test. Pray before and during the test and I will pray for you as well. I know you will do well because you have the answers already.

  9. I am struggling with all of this. I never know how to answer some of these questions. I just don’t know what the right answers are. I can’t really remember the fears I have overcome. I don’t know if I really ever trusted in God to meet my needs. I don’t know if he is even interested in me. I think I just go through the motions but I don’t really know if he is real.

    • Brittany jacobson says:

      Lord jesus i lift up Kelly lord you know that im still in the same boat as kelly and kellys not alone in this. i often feel the same. Lord jesus give the answers that she longs for help her to understand you take her through your word . Lord you know what her fears are you know what her thoughts are too i pray you remove her fears tonight and i pray for a night of peace amen

    • Donna B says:

      Kelly,

      Praying that God will reveal Himself to you. Praying that he will remove the doubts and the fears that are there and replace them with a faith for Him. Praying that He will give the courage to pray the prayer of salvation below if you don’t know Jesus as your personal Savior.

      “And if you would like to accept Jesus as Lord of your life, you can pray the following prayer or use it as a guide to create your own. Just talk to God from your heart, with the honesty and sincerity that you did above.”

      “Lord, I am sorry that I have done things to seperate myself from You and other people. I confess I have sinned against you and ask You to forgive me. I acknowledge that I could never earn salvation by my good works, but I come to you and put my trust in what Jesus did for me on the cross. I believe You love me and that Jesus died and rose again so that I can be forgiven and come to know You. Come into my heart and be Lord of my life. I trust you and thank You for loving me so much that I can know You up close and personal her one earth, and spend the rest of eternity with You in Heaven. In Jesus’ name. Amen.”

      Kelly, Jesus will meet you were you are today. And know that you are worthy of Him and His love. And that He doesn’t want you to live in fear or defeat. He loves you like crazy. If you need to talk to someone, please give Melissa a call at the P31 office at 877-731-4663 or anyone in the office can talk with you regarding this decision and your heart. Or I can be reached at 816-686-7387.

      I borrowed the above prayer from Renee Swope and her A Confident Heart book because she says it so much more beautifully than I can or could.

      Praying for you and for God to fill your heart with Himself.

      Donna B

  10. Angela Myers says:

    Thank you for that beautiful letter. The part of the letter that really struck me was “Don’t let your circumstances hold your heart hostage and cause you to lose your confidence in me.” This year so far has been really stressful, my husband’s diagnosis of Lymphoma has really put the fear in me and asking God why. I know He is saying why not. Instead of looking this as a punishment by God. Why not look at it as an opportunity to heal our marriage. I just happened upon this study from a post on Facebook. It was meant to be amd came a the right time.

  11. I was struck as I was doing my catch up reading how Satan uses us to convince others of the lies he wants them to believe about themselves. When we believe we aren’t good enough and feel like we have to put up a facade around others out of fear, we perpetuate the situation. Others look at us and think we have it all together which can lead to them feeling unsure and inadequate about themselves. Because no one can no the truth, they put up their own facade. In reality, we all need to recognize Satan’s lies and accept God’s grace an assurance that He loves us and is enough. We need to be open with one another so we can experience grace through one another, see reality in Christ (last half Colossians 2:17), and expose the lies of Satan.

  12. Kelly……I feel the same way..Today while re reading I was shocked to read that we are created to live like chidren dependent on our Father..Well I was never dependent upon my father and when I was he was unsafe, un trustworthy, nonconsistant…..SO I’m wondering if this is part of the problem I have surrendering to Gods will. To really thinking I matter to him, to trust him, to think that he will really be there for me…

    • I so agree. My example of a father was so unlike our Heavenly Father. Trust and feelings that I am not worthy of this loving Father/Daughter relationship has definitely stood in the way of me submitting to God.

  13. I am having a hard time trusting in God right now. I am filled with worry, anxiety etc. Could use some prayers right now. Long story short…my hb has a substance abuse problem. I see signs that God is restoring the marriage but now we are facing Satan,s attacks. He went to a recovery meeting last night and still hasn’t come home. He text me that his starter died and somebody was fixing it but that was in the middle ofr the night. The last time I heard from him was at 6 this morning. Too many thoughts have been in my mind. I give it to God and take it back. How do I give it to him and be at peace?

    • Doreen,
      Please know I am praying for you. Praying that God will provide you peace and direction. I have a brother who struggles with the same thing (clean and sober for 2 years now) and though it’s not a marriage relationship, I have gone through many ups and downs with him. In fact, I feel sick just thinking about what you are going through. Keep looking to God, try to make that relationship your focus! love and prayers to you!

  14. I’m facing the fear that I might not be able to raise all the money for my missions trip to Spain. Also, for the fear, that my friend is going to do something, because she is on a downward depression of something . Also, I had the fear that my mother wasn’t going to be alive today from her heart attack.

    • Donna B says:

      God,

      I pray for Ashley, her friend and her mom. I pray that you will fill Ashley up with your peace – your peace that passes her understanding. Calm her fears. Replace with a faith in you. I pray for healing for her Mom from her heart attack and I also pray a heart and thought healing for her friend. I pray that you would reveal yourself to her friend and help her friend realize that she is in need of you as her Savior. Show Ashley how to come alongside her friend and be “Jesus with skin on” to her friend. May her friend recognize you in Ashley and desire you instead of depression and harm. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

  15. i lost a daughter in 2009, from a tragic accident… she was 15…. i still to this day wished God would have taken my whole family, than just one of us…. this was a hard chapter for me to read…

  16. Donna B says:

    Confession time! I had to re-read Chapter 2 today! Too much stuff which usually means too many emotions and too overwhelming for this chick the first time around and even sometimes during the second round too.

    Love this verse from Micca: “ But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them – yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me.” (I Corin. 15:10)

    Then Micca states: It’s only by God’s grace that I can do anything! Although it’s my responsibility to work and finish well the task God puts before me, I still need His grace and power to do so.” … then later in the chapter … “God didn’t intend for you and me to live defeated. WE were created to live by faith, not fear.” ….”For you and me to live as carefree children in the care of God, we must return to living daily in His presence. Since the beginning of time, we’ve stepped out of the care of God. The result has been fear. God has faithfully been calling us back to live in His love and care ever since. Faith in God’s provision is our anchor that secures a life free from fear.”

    I’ve adopted Micca’s words as my prayer and hope for this study …. “you’re going to realize that you were created for faith, not fear. That’s when things will begin to change for you. You’ll learn how to rely on God’s care while giving Him your cares, you’ll be able to identify His goodness and mercy in your life, and you’ll overcome your fears of loneliness and insecurity. What’s more, you’ll fall in love with God and learn to reverence Him as you practice His presence in prayer.”

    Love this hope that God has given me in and through Micca and the words that He has given her to share with us!!

    Those were my take-aways from Chapter 2.And trust me … I know … they are hard to share but remember, it’s in our weaknesses, that He is made strong.

  17. The 3 things I am thanking God for is that I have the blessing of knowing God. Without that relationship my life would be so different. My relationship with the Lord means so much to me. I am also thanking God for my 20 year marriage, one that so many never thought would make it past the first couple of years. And I am thanking God for my three teens–although raising them isn’t easy, they are a blessing to my life. The 3 burdens I am choosing to give to God today are my concerns as a parent, my son leaving for the military this summer and those family members who have yet to come into a relationship with the Lord.

  18. I thought Chapter 1 was hard but then came the letter. Our family is going through a very painful time. I have cried more in the past 9 months then I have in all of my 52 years of life. I find myself often wishing that my life would just end and while reading the letter that was posted I was struck by the comment “Don’t let your circumstances hold your heart hostage and cause you to lose your confidence in me.” My heart is hostage and I have lost all confidence! I’m hurt, angry, discouraged, ashamed and AFRAID…hmmm I think God might have me here in this study on purpose :)

    • Valarie Garvin says:

      I think God lead me here on purpose as well, I will pray for you this week dear sister.

  19. Valarie Garvin says:

    I had to really face a ton of fears this past week, not only is the anniversary of my parent’s death coming up quickly my son has cystic fibrosis had a set back this week. I realized how much I hate hospitals and how wrapped up in fear I have been over so many things. Reading the first chapter was tough, because I am letting God in places in my heart I wouldn’t before. It is scarey but so freeing.

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