Peace of My Heart

An encouraging voice to drown out the noise

~Fear Blocks Potential~ January 13, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — Valerie Rutledge @ 11:06 am
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

fear is a liarWhat would you do if fear was not part of the equation?

I’d say every one of us has something in the back of our minds that we would like to try, a nagging desire that we can’t shake. Then fear shows up and talks us out of it…again.

Fear has many faces and presents itself in varying ways. I’ve put together a list of a few that have been a stumbling block in my own life.

Practicality. This makes no sense. I don’t have the resources. This will take away our family’s security and set us up for financial struggles.

Rejection. The sheer thought of someone shooting me down is enough to make me nauseous. Feelings of anxiety so powerful they nearly suffocate me for fear someone will say the dreaded “no” stop me dead in my tracks.

Ridicule. I’ve had nightmares of people laughing in my face or even worse, behind my back. My dream is silly. My abilities are insufficient. It is laughable that I ever thought this could be successful.

Failure. I have failed enough times in my life that I have zero desire to do it again. The easiest way not to fail is to never try anything new. So I’ll just stick with what I know works.

Comparison. So-n-so already does something similar and they do it flawlessly. They speak fluently and with confidence. Their vision is clear. I can’t do it like they do so I might as well not even try.

Can you relate?

Here’s the thing about fear, it’s not of God.

“For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” (2 Tim 1:7 ESV)

It’s all in your mind, something you’ve created as an excuse to keep you from doing that thing you know full well you are supposed to be doing. That’s right, I went there. Fear is just another excuse, a crutch that makes you feel better about walking away from your passion with your head hanging like a wounded pup. I’m not criticizing, I already told you I’ve been in those shoes. I’ve worn holes clean through the soles from overuse!

Because I have been there a time or fifteen, I can tell you that now is a good a time as any to STOP THAT! But don’t just take my word for it. The Bible gives a little encouragement to help you put fear in it’s place. Maybe try committing this to memory:

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10 ESV)

If that doesn’t put a little pep in your step, I don’t know what will! You don’t have to look within yourself to find the courage to “do the thing”, you need only to look up to the God who’s promised to be with you every step of the way.

Make a decision that you are no longer going to allow fear to block you from reaching your potential. Do it soon. There is no time like the present…just sayin’.

 

 

 

~Separation Anxiety~ April 29, 2014

I sat down to write this morning and found myself feeling horribly intimidated.  With our hectic schedule over the last couple of weeks combined with my allergy-induced fog, I have had very little time, much less ability to focus, in order to write anything worth reading.  I finally overcome the time restraint obstacle and get slapped in the face with a new one, fear.

When I am able to write on a consistent basis, I feel confident, not necessarily in myself, but in my connection with the Lord and the ability to discern His voice to what He’d have me to share with you all.  After essentially a two week sabbatical from writing, with a post or two tossed in for good measure, my worry is that I have lost that momentum that I once had in doing what I truly feel called to do.

And I am a little freaked.

It scares me to think that I could so easily lose the feeling of intimacy that I have with the Lord.  Life is busy, most likely always will be, but too busy to fellowship with my Creator?  Yikes.

Driving my kids to school, a Scripture came to mind, seemingly out of nowhere (wink, wink):

“Remain joined to me, and I will remain joined to you. No branch can bear fruit by itself. It must remain joined to the vine. In the same way, you can’t bear fruit unless you remain joined to me.”  (John 15:4 NIRV)

I hadn’t forgotten about the Lord during my busy season but I had certainly neglected my time with Him.  I believe that is why I felt scared to post today.  My lack of communication with God had me feeling fruitless, like I had become separated from Him to the point of losing the gift that He has given me to encourage through writing.  I was looking in rather than looking up, failing to remember that my help comes from the Lord.  I can’t do this writing thing on my own.  It’s by His grace alone that I am able to share my story, combined with His word, in order to lift up the downcast and brokenhearted through the power of a multi-faceted testimony.  The very next verse in John 15 goes on to say, “…apart from me, you can do nothing.”  Rather than see this as a belittling, you are nothing without me attitude, I see it as a promise that He is always with me and gives me the strength and skills to do things that could never be done within my own ability.

One simple word, vital to our strength

One simple word, vital to our strength