Fear vs. Faith

I’ve heard it said that where there is fear, faith cannot exist. I don’t believe that to be true. The further into recovery I go, I find that the only real test of my faith is when fear is present.

Andy Stanley just finished the second week of the new series Starting Over. I cannot take photo 2notes fast enough to absorb everything he is saying, which is why I watch his talks multiple times.

He highlighted several incredible affirmations in this last message. One that really got me thinking and led to this post was, “You only make peace with your past by owning your piece of the past.” Isn’t that profound and yet simple. Owning my piece of the past.

We all want peace in our lives. There is no better peace than that of reconciling the past. I never thought those two words (peace and past) could be used in the same sentence. BB

When I first stepped into recovery the thought of facing some of the unthinkable things I had done in my past was too much and almost kept me from ever getting sober. It was one of the most difficult things I have ever done. And I had every excuse known to man not to complete this task… “What if someone finds this notebook with these things in writing and uses it against me?”
“What if I die before I can go through this process with my sponsor and this is how people remember me?”
“What if my fiancé finds this and realizes I’m ‘damaged goods’?”

Fear. Fear had kept me bound for too long. Fear had kept me sick and spiritually paralyzed for years. Fear was keeping me addicted, drunk and compromised.

Faith showed up. Not in the absence of fear, rather in the midst of it. Six months after starting cleanup on the wreckage of my past, I sat down with Lia, my sponsor and 5 hours later we set those pages on fire and watched them turn to ashes. That was on a Fall California day in 2002.

I remember feeling the ash between my fingers. I couldn’t see what was next. I couldn’t see myself functioning as a productive member of society. I couldn’t see the plans that had already been laid out for me. Then God

He sent Lia into my life to save me from self inflicted doom. I could have missed the many ways he was protecting and guiding me. She knew what I didn’t know at the time, that everything really was going to be alright. I wonder if she knew just how much better than alright they would be? Andy says, “When you own it, you dethrone it.” He’s right, ya know.

So now, today, in this moment, I ask God to replace my fear with faith. I ask him to direct my thinking and use my story for his glory. I ask him to continue to make beauty from those ashes that I rubbed between my fingers all those years ago.

Don’t underestimate the Creator of the Universe. He has a plan and it’s always better, bigger, and brighter than mine.

What do you think? Can faith and fear coexist or is the one who is fearful lacking faith?

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Five Minute Friday: Change

 

GO

© Joy Cannis and Even A Girl Like Me, 2012

When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back. A week is more than enough time for us to decide whether or not to accept our destiny.~Paulo Coelho

The topic for this week’s FMF post could not be more timely. Selfishly I like to think that God put it on Lisa-Jo‘s heart just for me.

I am experiencing change all around me. It’s not all bad, but unsettling nonetheless. The quote at the top of the page came from attempts to calm my nerves through hours of reading what different authors say about change. It sums it up well for me right now.

Change is a funny thing, it brings to the surface two very strong, competing emotions, fear and excitement.

Fear of the unknown.
Excitement for what the future holds.

For me, today, in this moment,
Change = Adventure.
I’ll keep you posted.

All that you touch
You Change.
All that you Change
Changes you.
The only lasting truth
is Change.
God
is Change.
~Octavia E. Butler

STOP

Wanna participate or just read more takes on the word change? Click here

 

 

Do you know what you are?

Quote

“Each second we live is a new and unique moment of the universe,
a moment that will never be again.
And what do we teach our children?
We teach them that two and two make four, and that Paris is the capital of France.

When will we also teach them what they are?

We should say to each of them: Do you know what you are? You are a marvel. You are unique.

In all the years that have passed, there has never been another child like you. Your legs, your arms, your clever fingers, the way you move. You may become a Shakespeare, a Michelangelo, a Beethoven.

You have the capacity for anything. Yes, you are a marvel.

And when you grow up, can you then harm another who is, like you, a marvel?
You must work, we must all work, to make the world worthy of its children.”

~Pablo Picasso