Today as I was walking to pick my daughter up from a school event, I marvelled at the place God has brought me from. I noticed the cooler autumn air, the leaves crunching under my feet, the world around me changing colour, the neighbour that had painted his house – my eyes were wide open to the beauty around me, and I was actively noticing. 20 years ago, walking by myself, I wouldn’t have noticed anything. 20 years ago, I was crippled with fear, too busy noticing every car or person that passed by me, too preoccupied with every noise that made me jump, to notice anything else. I honestly felt as if fear was part of my character and I had no idea that Satan had plans to keep me trapped in fear for as long as possible. It is strange how Satan’s “traps” can feel like the norm and not the exception. Fear became part of my identity and went wherever I went. It took me years to clearly recognize the reality of Satan’s hold on my life.
I remember the season in which I began to hear God speak to me and challenge me to look deeper into the recesses of my heart and mind. I had an all-encompassing desire to draw closer to Jesus and to overcome fear with His help. I had no idea that working through something with God can take time; years, decades sometimes. I wanted the final result instantly instead of growing and changing through the journey and process on which I had embarked. But God gave me grace, patience and perseverance, like manna for each day, just as I needed it, and He steadily began to heal my mind and transform my character.
At the beginning of this year, God planted a seed in mind and put a desire in my heart to pursue growth in my relationship with Him through building community with other women. The phrase He gave me as I began to dream about what that could look like was, “Be Not Afraid.” I was humbled and overwhelmed that He knew me so well; that while He has brought healing to me in regards to fear, He knows that Satan would still like to use it against me to crush me. Satan is never fair. Ever. But, “Be Not Afraid.”
Our winter journal is coming soon and I know, without a doubt, that I am meant to write on my journey through fear and what God has taught me. I can’t wait to share and explore God’s Word together. For whatever season you are in, “Be Not Afraid”…
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