Tuesday, September 24


I've been having intense nightmares for the last few weeks. It's been revolving around this idea of losing Ben. Whether it be that he leaves me for another woman or he dies suddenly... it's been driving me crazy! And has put me on an emotional roller coaster.

I know what it is like to lose someone you love dearly.

On Sunday our pastor was discussing the fear of death and the fear of safety. It sparked so many thoughts in my head, because I don't fear my own death. I fear the death of my husband and my kids. I fear the loss of them in my life. Because in my head, I couldn't do life without Ben. He is my best friend and has walked the hardest road alongside me with love, support, kindness and strength.

A wave of shock overcame me on Sunday as our pastor was speaking because after almost three years I have never known this about myself. I've seen all the symptoms but never acknowledged the condition. This fear controls a lot of my life. I get nervous in the car when we have to put on the breaks suddenly. I lose it when something even slightly scary happens in our neighborhood. I imagine getting "the phone call" every time Ben drives away and I assume he is going to get in an accident.

I know God doesn't want me to live this way. He does not want us to fear.

For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. -2 Timothy 1:7 
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you." -Deuteronomy 31:6 
When I am afraid, I will trust in you.  In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me? -Psalm 56:3-4 
There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. -1 John 4:18

I took Elwood to the park this morning and on my way home I was listening to an interview of Matt Redman about his song "10,000 Reasons". He told a story of an older man that loved the Lord who had gotten sick and was on his death bed. He called in all his family and friends and asked that they sing "10,000 Reasons" as he passed away. I teared up immediately hearing about how the man said he wanted to be raised into Heaven singing His praises because he wasn't afraid of death. He wasn't scared to meet Jesus, but rather much the opposite.

Matt Redman talked about how he couldn't believe that God was using that song for such an eternal purpose. He said that concerts and recordings are so limited but hearing the stories of how the song is changing lives and moving Heaven are overwhelming.

Oh, how I desire to have that confidence in Him.

I'm learning to trust Him in all circumstances. He's never failed me and I know He never will. Leaning into my fear gives me the opportunity to surrender it, letting God the chance to take control and ease it. His yoke is easy and His burden is light. The burdens I think I carry are only my own. They are heavy weighted, difficult, messy and hurtful. But as soon as I can give it to God, it disapates immediately.

10,000 Reasons by Matt Redman (emphasis mine)

Bless the Lord, O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I'll worship Your holy name

The sun comes up, it's a new day dawning
It's time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass, and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes

You're rich in love, and You're slow to anger
Your name is great, and Your heart is kind
For all Your goodness I will keep on singing
Ten thousand reasons for my heart to find

And on that day when my strength is failing
The end draws near and my time has come
Still my soul will sing Your praise unending
Ten thousand years and then forevermore

Jesus, I'll worship Your holy name
Lord, I'll worship Your holy name

Monday, September 9

When Strength Isn't Enough

I feel defeated by a lot of things right now. The last few weeks have overwhelmed me with life circumstances that I can neither control or fix. I feel inadequate most days to be the wife, mom, sister, daughter, and friend I should be. I fall short and often fail at what I think I should be doing.

But when I read the Word and soak in God's story, I see that no one was enough. Not one person (I mean person, not Christ) measured up to what God had planned for them. Nor did anyone in the Bible know how important they were regardless of their shortcomings or successes. We're just all human beings doing the best we can to pursue Christ and godliness.

Exposed beyond the shadows
You take the cup from me
Your dirt removes my blindness
Your pain becomes my peace 
                                     -Jars of Clay

I am frail. Nothing I do, say, or touch is stable. Because I am not stable. Not without Christ. I'm learning to place my hope and trust in Him, leaning into my weakness so it is exposed and God can work on me.

A lot of things in life terrify me right now. The road ahead looks scary and difficult. Finishing out this pregnancy, having three little ones under age two, grieving the hardest season of the year for us in October, and the many crazy days at our house to come... But I take comfort knowing my strength isn't enough. And thank the Lord! My strength would get me to about... this afternoon. Then it would fade and fail.

"Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life." -Psalm 143:8