Fear is a bully that must be silenced.
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Fear thundered in my heart
Deafening my courage
Suffocating my dreams
And for a season I cowered in my mind.
At last my courage summoned
As I unsheathed my sword
Braving the giants
Slaying the lies.
Mental Terrorism. It’s the only way I can describe mental issues such as OCD, panic attacks, and severe depression. You are going about your otherwise regular life when— *BAM!*—unwanted terrorizing images, accompanied by extremely negative feelings go off like a bomb inside your mind and body.
Mundane. Today’s culture strives to be many things. Fastest. Coolest. Sexiest. Newest. But never, ever mundane. Death before anything boring, or tedious, or God forbid, looooooong-terrrrrmmmmm. That’s just not the way we do things anymore...But this attitude is counterfeit for the true beauty of life.
True Confession: I am a Kudos Junkie.
Probably too much, I like it when people notice when I’ve done a good job…whether it’s a major project, like planning a production or writing a novel, or a minor project, like cleaning the fridge or having a good hair day. If someone acknowledges my effort or work, I seem to walk an inch taller. It’s to the point that if no one says anything, I begin to think that maybe I did a poor job, or the project wasn’t excellent (and I’m embarrassed to admit this), but I can even get in my head that maybe the people connected to that endeavor are disappointed or upset with me. I know. I need help.
Speaking of not knowing how to fit everything in…can we talk packing? There is much to consider, including a strictly enforced baggage weight limit. Paris is dressier, so shorts and sneakers will not do. Temps can be hot in the day and chilly at night, so layers and options are needed. And have I ever mentioned my compulsion to have multiple shoes options? Let’s just say, packing light and me are in a fight right now, and we need some serious counseling.
"I am pregnant!" I said, showing off my new ability to speak French to my fluent friend. I was so proud of myself…until she busted up laughing. My bubble of pride quickly deflated, making that annoying tooting sound. Instead of stating after a delicious meal, “I’m so full!” I had mistakenly announced I was having a baby. Nice. Time to go back to my audio lessons.
241 years ago, in the sweltering Philadelphia heat, over 50 men from the American colonies fearlessly debated an idea. But this idea was a double-edged sword. While it promised hope and a future where anything would be possible, dreadfulness and solemnity hung in the air because its fulfillment would not come without a great price.
Who doesn't love a good bowl of noodles? It's a world-wide craze, as you see variations of these wonderful creations in many nations across the globe. I love how straight and neat they come in the box, all lined up next to each other and in perfect order...until they are thrown into the violent chaos of the boiling water, and then they scramble and tangle into mess of starch. Sometimes I feel like this is a picture of my mind...
Scuba diving is a spectator sport for me. Diving into frigid waters clad head to toe in the most unflattering rubber suit known to mankind (seriously, no one needs to see my butt in one of those) and relying solely on a metal tube on my back to keep me alive is not my idea of fun. More like my idea of a claustrophobic underwater panic attack. No thank you. I will enjoy the gorgeous images of the treasures found from the warmth of my comfy couch where I can be surrounded by an unlimited supply of cage-free oxygen.
Perfectionism has always haunted me. When I was in school, Failure was NOT. An. Option. True story: I received my first and only F when I was in college (only on a test, mind you, not a course grade), and to this day, I still have nightmares about that class when I’m feeling particularly stressed. It’s exam day…I haven’t been to class all semester…it’s way too late to drop the class…extreme panic attack ensues…I bolt up in bed sweaty and out of breath. I know. I need therapy.
We all want to experience the thrill of being an overcomer…it’s just the overcoming part that we wish we could do without. Wouldn’t it be so much easier if we could just get plopped down on the finish line in 1st place, rather than have to endure the pain and heartache of the journey? And so for many of us, we loose heart in the battle and settle for an honorable mention. Some of us stop the fight altogether and reduce our pursuit of destiny to a spectator sport.
But God wants to remind us all that it’s OK to start again...
LABELS. We read ‘em, we use ‘em, we stick ‘em on people.
Labels are useful for identification, and they aren’t always a bad thing, even when it comes to people. For instance, in about 40 labels, I can tell you a huge amount about my life up until this point. See if you can follow my testimony simply by reading these labels...
Knowledge is power, and I’m a little OCD about it. I love to consume it, and even more, to share it. Not surprising I’m a teacher, huh? Conversely, when there is information that I know is out there, but for some reason it’s out of my reach, let’s just say, I start to get a little fidgety. Maybe a tad bit anxious. OK, a lot obsessive about how I can possibly resolve the gnawing feeling of uncertainty resonating from the core of my soul. I know…I got issues.
The White Light. The Euphoric Love. No Fear, Worry, or Shame…just that Perfect Love encompassing, invading, inviting. The stories we’ve heard are all true. Those testimonies, where earthly cares are instantly swallowed up by a heavenly peace and confidence, where the air itself is drenched in a tangible Hope, are real. That’s exactly what happens. I know this because I’ve experienced it.
We live in a culture where we are obsessed with knowing: what’s the breaking news or latest controversy, what star wore what when, and what happened on last night’s hit TV show. There’s so much information bombarding us and available at our fingertips. After all, pretty much any info can be found by a Google search taking just .023 seconds. Instant Info is the New Norm...
Today I’d like to address cell phone apps that EVERY parent needs to know about. Seriously…you will not believe some of the stuff that’s out there.
Their marching into position rivaled a perfect Radio City Rockettes line, but besides the synchronization and matching body types, their similarities ended there. Instead of bright, sequined leo’s on tall, lean physiques, these Russian women wore beige canvas-y dresses cut just below the knees and snuggly fit on their short, squat bodies.
Life. It’s a precious gift from God, and can be glorious at times. But let’s be honest; other times it can be grueling, and seriously painful. “The struggle is real” hashtag is a thing because, well…the struggle is real.
The girl stared in disbelief, unable to comprehend what she was witnessing. Unseen in the crook of her tree, she was safe from harm, and she dared not make a sound, lest the unrelenting man turn his violent rage on to her. Why did the boy keep going back for more?
Capilano Suspension Bridge. 450 feet long. 230 feet above the canyon floor. A challenge for someone who dislikes heights, and a nemesis for one who hates being out of control. Unfortunately I’m both, so I’ll keep my feet on my good friend, Earth, thank you very much.
How did that beast squeeze through our doggy door? Every hair on my body was at attention as adrenaline prickled under my skin like a thousand needles. The creature waltzed with such confidence across the room, like it owned the place.
Crouching in the shadows, all I could do now was pray desperately that I would not be found. But surely the sound of my pounding heart was echoing through the empty cellar, calling out to my predator, “The child’s over here! Stupid enough to think you won’t find her!”
Pretty sure I came out of the womb afraid. No joke. I honestly can’t remember a time in my childhood when I didn’t have my good pal, Fear, right at my side.