Tag Archives: fear

The Deception of Fear

THE DECEPTION OF FEAR

By Carolyn Dale Newell

You must not fear them, for the Lord your God Himself fights for you.

Deuteronomy 3:22 NKJV

Our enemy, the devil, uses fear to hold us hostage in various ways. We are familiar with what fear feels like, but today, God clued me in on one of Satan’s schemes. He is a clever trickster.

As our church took prayer requests this morning, I said, “We are headed to the mountains. Pray for our protection from the bears.” Good thing to pray about, right? Sure, but why did I fail to mention the reason for our trip? A writing retreat.

Church had barely started when God enlightened me. My fear of the bears had distracted me from what I needed to pray about most: God’s anointing on me as I write.

Last year, Iva and I spent three days alone in the Smoky Mountains. My first vacation on my own. While encouraging Iva to potty one morning, a hotel guests kindly informed me that a bear had joined us. My immediate response was the wrong one. I screamed. The bear growled before retreating into the woods.

I felt shook up most of the day, a natural response to a dangerous situation. Our brains go into freeze, fight, or flight mode. Inside the safety of the hotel, a Bible verse popped up on my phone:

You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. (1 John 4:4 NKJV)

All summer, social media has been abuzz with stories and videos about bears in Gatlinburg, and in particular, near our hotel. As my trip drew near, the bears have been at the forefront of my mind.

Today, I realized fear had distracted me from the purpose of my trip. Writing a book.

Faith frees, but fear freezes.

I trust God to keep us safe. Not only had fear occupied too many of my thoughts, but it pre-occupied my prayer life.

Is there something in your life that frightens you? Something you must face? Do you trust God for your protection? Have you allowed the agitation to distract you? Has it taken prominence over the weightier things of God, especially in your prayer time?

Join me today as we declare victory over the enemy of our souls. We see him for the sly deadly opponent he really is. Our prayers might have been manipulated for some time, but not any longer.

We have been set free from the deception of fear. The Lord fights our battles, and we praise Him for the victories.

Lord, we fight fear often in this life. We have no reason to fear. You fight our battles. We trust You completely. Remove all fear from our minds and the hinderances it creates. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

DIG DEEPER

Read Is. 41:10, John 14:27, and 2 Tim. 1:7.

HIKING THE TRAIL

What fears create anxiety for you? Take them to God in prayer and leave them with Him. Trust in the Lord and do not fear.

Copyright 2018 Carolyn Dale Newell.

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Guide Dog Tale: Until the Storm Passes

 

UNTIL THE STORM PASSES

By Carolyn Dale Newell

You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah

Psalm 32:7 NKJV

 

I snuggled beneath the warm covers. Iva raised up, but she curled up between us. Good! She would go back to sleep. Iva possesses an internal clock with a 6 AM alarm that usually is flawless. My phone announced lightening had been detected within a four-mile radius. Hopefully, Iva would sleep until the storm passed.

Siri announced another notification about rain. I barely heard it above the thunder cracking and waves breaking outside our oceanfront hotel.

Thoughts rushed through my head. I would have to dig out our matching glow-worm green rain coats. Iva hates her raincoat, because she doesn’t want anything on her head. If we go out now, the thunder may frighten Iva. She never reacts to it, but that can always change. taking her out to the bathroom could result in getting struck by lightning. Not likely, but possible. Please Lord, let the storm pass by before Iva awakes.

Lightening flashed. Iva stirred. I laid still. She nestled up to my husband. She moved blankets and pillows to lay her head on his chest. Daddy, keep me safe from the lightening.

I drifted back to sleep. I woke up when my hubby was taking Iva out. All that remained of the storm was a drizzle. Iva returned to our room slightly damp.

When our path takes us through the storms of life, we often focus on the what-ifs. We stress about every possible scenario our storm could present. None of my fears came to fruition. Iva was spared from the humiliation of her raincoat. Thunder failed to startle her, and no one was struck by lightning.

Iva came through the storm with just a few raindrops on her. Thanks to my husband, I benefited from the storm by gaining a few minutes of sleep.

Storms threaten us. They hold us hostage to our own anxieties. Many storms are extremely serious. An illness. A death. An accident. Finances, family, jobs, addictions, heartache, pain, sorrow, prodigals, abandonment, grief, and the list go on. These storms damage and destroy, but we add to their destruction by our what-ifs.

When the thunder rolls and lightening splits the sky, we can take a hint from Iva. We must snuggle up to our heavenly Daddy. Move things out of the way. Push them aside like Iva pawed at the sheets. We can nestle under our Father’s wings in safety and security.

Instead of asking, “what if,” let’s ask, “who will?” God will! His wings dim the lightening bolts. He softens the thunder. He keeps us dry and warm, until the storm passes.

Copyright 2018 Carolyn Dale Newell.