Thursday, February 25, 2010

Fear Or Faith?

Most psychologists believe that there are only two fears we are born with.  One being the fear of loud noises, the other is the fear of falling.  I don't know about you but on occasion, throughout my life I have certainly dealt with more than just those two fears.   To this day I am afraid of roller coasters that go upside down!
In reality I am not talking about getting over lesser fears such as fear of amusement park rides.  I am referring to phobias and fears that might be based on hurtful or tragic childhood situations or anything that immobilizes us, that keeps us from trusting God and that freezes our feet to the floor when it comes to exercising our faith.   These might include fear of rejection, fear of being unloved, fear of our health collapsing,  fear of lack of finances,  fear of intimacy, or even fear of success.  The list is as long as there are hearts and souls who endure them.
As we delve into the next chapter in Robert A. Schuller's "Leaning Into God When Life Is Pushing You Away" we explore the relationship between our faith in God vs. our fear of anything else.   It doesn't matter what kind of fear it is.  Fear negates faith.  When our faith is negated our closeness to God is weakened.  When our closeness to God is weakened we are living a life which has less meaning and significance.  There is a story in the Bible found in the New Testament book of Matthew, chapter 8, verses 23-27 which finds Jesus out on the sea of Galilee in a huge storm.   He had fallen asleep and awoke to his disciples yelling at him to do something!  Jesus replied to the disciples, "you of little faith, why are you so afraid?" (vs 26) In the book of Mark when reading the same story he is quoted as asking, "why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith.?"  Jesus did not say, "why are you so unbelieving?"  For Jesus the opposite of faith is not unbelief but it is fear.  In fact the words "fear" and "afraid" occur more than 520 times in the Bible.  Fear has been plaguing humans forever.
  Robert goes on to write that our life can be defined by how one perceives the future.  Are you defining your life by your faith or by your fears?
We are now more almost two months into the new year of 2010.  By this time you should have a clear idea of what your goals for this year will be.  Mine are written out and framed where I can see them every day.  I have eleven clear-cut goals which cover several different categories in my life:  spiritual, physical, professional and personal goals.   If you have not clearly defined what you would like to accomplish this year I want to encourage you to take the time today and do this.   If you are failing to plan, you might be planning to fail and God wants you to be a success so you can be a light in a dark world.    A good source to help you define your goals is called "The One Page Miracle" taken from a chapter in a book by Dr. Daniel Amen.   You can Google "one page miracle" and find a very helpful template to follow.   As you begin the process of writing out your goals first start by praying and asking for God's guidance.  Next you might want to evaluate where you have come from in the last year of 2009 including making note of any goals that you did not accomplish so that you can roll them over into this year.  It is never too late to start over!! 
"For I know the plans I have for you says the Lord.  They are plans for good and not for evil.  Plans to prosper you and give you a future filled with hope.   Jeremiah 29:11
God is blessing you.   Donna


  1. I join you, Donna, in a fear of
    roller coasters. No way could I go on one either. I found out quite a few years ago that I had a very deepseated fear of rejection by people. This effected the way that I aproached people I was absolutely astounded the night
    after I had had this counselling session that for the first time in my llife that
    I could actually tell, for the
    first time, how I spoke. By this I mean speaking, loudly or
    softly. Me being able to do this astounded me as I hadn't
    realized that I coulsn't tell
    if I spoke loudly, softly
    Now if I realize that I sm
    speaking loudly I stop speakng
    then change my voice so that I
    can tell that I am speakng
    softly instead
    God bless you all Barbie M

  2. Nice to see you posting again, Donna. - My fears are to find on the amusement park or on a boat/ship when the lake/ocean is rough. – In our society it’s hard not being afraid of something. We are trimed to be perfect, to do a work properly to look good, to wear pretty clothes, excellent grades in school to get a good job, otherwise we do not get it and on and on...! We fear to fail! Are that not natural reactions?! mainly when we are young and need to find our place on this earth. I like to lend a hand when other people are in need. It should be selfevident to help our mums with the household as a kid. But my mum was critical and judgemental and nothing was done right. So I did as less as I could. – Now as I’m much older I stay strong and tall in the world and tell myself you are not better then I am, nobody is perfect. I know God loves us all like we are. We are uniquly made. – Setting goals at the begining of the year is a good thing. But do we really pursue this goals...! Are they set right, not to many? I do not always succeed. Is that maybe weakness? For that we should seek in prayer and ask God. We should find the faith in Jesus that he will help us. Fear is a bad “life counsellor” and makes us sick mental and physical. – Faith before fear, my motto! Blessings, Rose

  3. Hi Rose, Hi Barbie!
    Just to clarify..."yes" some fears are legitimate and keep us safe. For example if we see a wild animal running towards us it is a good thing to have enough fear to run away! God provided us with the "fight or flight" instinct and it is good! I am talking about "anything that immobilizes us, that keeps us from trusting God and that freezes our feet to the floor when it comes to exercising our faith." (page 48 "Leaning Into God...") God is blessing you! Donna

  4. Yes Donna, I see, I read the page again. Things that immobilizes us from trusting God. Something we not do, because of fear. Example not applying for a new job because we fear not to get it. Am I right? Blessings Rose

  5. My Faith, I like to think is strong mostly and I know all will be okay whatever happens. But, health problems have changed my
    social life greatly since I was found to have Primary Progressive MS 10 years ago.

    Communication abilities (verbally speaking;), emotionally, and, as another person wrote, the loudness or vocal tone or the balanced emphasis of my speech are off kilter.

    I now write more (actually type) and am looking at a voice activated typing program as writing is and maybe always has been more calming and clearer than getting into or having conversations.

    Lastly, I am tall at 6ft 2in and I stay away from my bi-lateral walker for MS as much as possible, to maintain my walking abilities, but I have to stay physically well back from groups that are sitting, as it seems I cause "you are towering over us" as some have said and I fully understand.

    HE is my calming teacher but still I fear many group encounters now. And having addressed large audiences in my career, admitedly from a microphone, it is still a new dilemma as MS progresses and abilities change.

    So, I need to keep talking to HIM about this.

    Hope this reads well enough to be understood.


  6. On the subject of goals, I have been encouraged by your blogs to not let the goals slip. I have had several letter exchanges on two projects or goals.

    The most important being to encourage interfamily shared Holy Communion and there is some progress from a letter I received today from The Perfectorate of The Papal Household.

    Secondly, I have been trying to get MRI Venographies approved under Canada health and one centre in Hamilton near Toronto has been awarded $100,000. start up and Buffalo NY is starting MRIV for MS patients and Canadian Health Plans are about to make a decision on paying for out of Canada MRIVs as there would be a shortage of facilities in Canada.

    Jan-Michael with Blessings

  7. Jan-Michael,

    Was reading the blogs...and wanted to reach-out to you.

    My prayers are with you...and my best with you and your Papal House-Hold! Very insightful...

    Stay strong, Positive, and Never Give Up! Working through the problems-

    God's will-shall be done...
    Thy will--Helping one another-

    Maybe, we can exchange e-mails and network during your time of difficulties...A friend-

  8. Thank you Al for your encouragement. You have raised my spirits in your words outlook and Faith! I have MS but MS does not have me!!!

    I am doing what I can and HE has opened many more doors than those that closed after my MS at age 50 on April 1st, 2000. Not a good April's Fools Day was that!;)

    Good to have your friendship and your offer of support if things get tough.

    HE always provides a lift to us, sometimes it is a warm sunny day and sometimes a kind post from a new friend! And I am so glad I hiked mountains when I could, as those memories are never lost but rather relived over and over.

    I can recall getting up early, hitchhiking to where I surmised wildlife would cross and saw the largest moose & family as I crouched in the woods by the stream. Awesome times!

    He is blessing you

  9. Jan-Michael, Barbie, laudly, soft speaking is because she was treated as a no good fom her step mother. Loud to show, I’m here too, listen to me I’m here and have not less value than others. That can frighten people and they avoid you. I have similar experiances. I am still loud with my dad. – I think I stop here, we both are out-of topic. Blessings, and prayer for you Jean... Rose

  10. Not to worry Rose, you were talking relativee to overcoming "fears" and I appreciate your thinking of me.

    He is Blessing you.


  11. Hi All,
    Every one of you are "more than conquerors through Christ who gives you strength." I am so honored that honesty and sharing take place at such a high level on this blog. This is all because of the people who have joined in conversation here. Jan-Michael, you continue to be an inspiring example of one who has not let what could be debilitating disease stop you from making a HUGE difference in the lives of so many! The two goals you spoke of above are so important: one to help with familiy's spiritual lives, one to benefit the physical. And of course they cross over as we are all made in His image, body, soul, and mind. More than the two things you mentioned above, your purpose, I believe, is to be a strong role model to those who are facing adversity and pain. I have mentioned to more than one person that they need to join my blog because they will get strength and encouragement from YOU through experiencing your faith in God. You are prayed for and loved. He is blessing you. Donna

  12. Every one of you are "more than conquerors through Christ who gives you strength." YESSS..., DONNA!!!

  13. Hi Barbie,
    I realize that I must have been distracted and I did not throroughly read what you wrote about your fear of being rejected. I am sorry for that. What I read is that you used to (or sometimes)raise your voice when you are nervous and afraid of rejection and you are aware of your feelings and you know that the voice-raising is some kind of a defense mechanism. What an insightful thing that you can tell when you are using your voice to cover-up your insecurities Before any of us can begin to ask God for help with our fears we must first recognize and admit that they exist. Honesty. "know the truth and the truth will set you free."
    I am praying that you will continue to grow in faith knowing that God is with you always.
    He is blessing you. Donna

  14. Dear Donna.

    Thank you so much for the
    message that is above this one
    I used belong to an International
    and Interdenominal Christian
    group. I was at one of their
    conferences when one of the
    woman came up to me. She had
    something that she wanted to tell me ##She said Barbara
    I know that you are different
    to what you used to be but
    I couldn't work out what it is

    Dear Lord, Thank you for the
    way that You have healed me in
    various ways and how You are
    healing me This is so precious
    Thank You Lord Amen

    God bless you all particularly
    Donna and Robert

    God bless

  15. Rejecting (fear), means for me, mainly from people I love and they let me feel they like me too. I coud do something wrong to them and they do reject me. With my faith I can deal better with this circumstance. Blessings, Rose

  16. I know this is off topic but so inspiring

    I thought you would all like the video
    "More Than Gold" that is YWAM (Youth With a Ministry) related effort at the Olympics

    You will recall Donna's & Robert's son Anthony's YWAM mission work in PNG. Link to video is below.

    Your friend in Christ
    Jan-Michael (Canada)

  17. Keep your strong faith jan-michael. It will help you get through the hard days a head. I my self have been frozen with fear as I have watched over and raised my son. As there is always a new problem as I get older and the goverment make new rules. Then I think who has taken me this far and has helped me over the many mountains I have faced. "It is God working in me,giving me the will and the power to achieve His purposes." Phil.2:15. And I also find alot of comfort in this blog. God Bless You All: Cysradill

  18. Thanks Cysradill for your encouragement. I know HE will continue to give you and I, too, the strength and answers we need, always!

    Blessings to you,your son and whole family

  19. Great blog!

    Fear or faith...walking in faith always. It is hard to understand.

    And with-out faith, we can not conquer the fears. But, yet, when we are the victim of our fears, it does stop us from walking in faith.

    Even our U.S. currency says "In God We Trust" Does that mean trusting in HIM in our faith always? Our lives can take a turn for the good or for the bad, even in the ill. Trust in him...walking in faith always. It's hard to understand...what is faith?

    Great Blog...Thanks Donna!


    "Inspire the word to inspire the world"
    A new copyrighted saying for my book. It all started here in the

  20. Good question, "what is faith?" I talked about is next!! God is blessing you, Donna

  21. Sometimes we are so anxiety ridden that even though we pray to God we are still so filled with anxiety we are not sure if we are praying the right words. I am one of those persons who was born with anxieties and when I get afraid I ask God to help but of course because I am in the middle of anxieties it's hard to stay focused in Faith.

    Jan-Michael, I admire you so much for your courage and positive outlook and I am sure it comes from your very strong Faith, God bless you and I will pray for your well being.

  22. Dear Patty,
    I hear you. Keep speaking to God and tell him that you are anxiety ridden. He will hear you. You might not experience his help right away but you have already begun by admitting that you are anxious. "Know the truth and the truth will set you free." You are already free because you have admitted that you have weaknesses. God will always meet you where you are. He loves you just the way you are. I am praying for you.
    God is blessing you, Donna

  23. Some thoughts. - Fear and anxiety, everyone has felt that in their lives already. We should analize why we have it. Never dwell in it. That blocks us from coming out of it. We can pray and give everything in the Lord’s hands. We can go towards him like we are, we have nothing to hid from him. He even knows what we have on our mind before we are telling him everyting. Have we people we can speak about, we are lucky. If not we can write everything down in a diary and really having a quiet time in prayer with God. Or we can watch online or on TV a sermon from a pastor which inspires us. - Are we later still caught of anxiety and fear, we should be courageous and thinking about to consult a professional person. – I’m much helped with a good sermon, my diary and a quiet time in prayer. Or being in the natur, listening to music, cooking a good meal. I unfortunately have nobody when I fear or feel axiety. I mean having a person to speak on the phone or meeting a friend. They all turn away from problems others have or laugh about. With my old parents it’s quite similair. But I’m not dejected because of that. I have faith in God. I always look into the future. My prayers are with you Patty and all of you who are in need of one. – Blessings, Rose

  24. I recently went through a very stressful, anxiety ridden time. There were multiple medical problems going on simultaneously in my family.My daughter had to have a biopsy for possible melanoma, my brother had surgery and had a lifethreatening infection, my mother in law was fainting and the doctor couldn't figure out why, my sister in law was in a car accident and can't work for three monts, a good friend was diagnosed with colon cancer, and I had to have tests for possible kidney or bladder cancer. I have never been more afraid and at wits end in my life. My blood pressure was off the charts and I couldnt't calm down. I prayed constantly.The day I had tests performed, (taking images of my kidney), I was shaking so bad that the technition said I had to find a way to calm down or they wouldn't be able to do the test. Then I remembered the phrase that Robert mentioned in many sermons "I can do all things through Christ for he strenghens me". I kept repeating it silently and the technician said that she was amazed at how quickly I calmed down. She said I don't know what you did but you went into a zone and your breathing calmed and your heartrate did also. I shared with her the phrase and said God was really with me. That was the most important thing Robert taught me. That you can go through anything with God's help and He will strengthen you.Thanks Robert. You're still pastoring me. I'm happy to report that my daughter's biopsy came back negative, my brother is fine, my sister in law is getting better. We still don't know what's causing the issue with my mother in law, but I have faith she'll be ok. My friend has stage 3 colon cancer and there is a good chance she'll survive. God is good! God's peace and comfort to you all. Mary

  25. Mary you are so right . I have used that phrase so often and beleive me it works. So happy it worked for you. Isn,t faith wonderfull. God Bless. Cysradill

  26. Mary,

    I dont know you...or others very well in the blogs. But, I will pray for you and your family.

    What is faith?...Trusting in him. In good, bad and even in the ill. We might not understand everything or all the bad with it's negative connotations. But, faith does help re-store an outcome of trust. Always.

    Whether the outcome is good or bad, trust in him...walking in faith. I liked your phrase that Robert A. instilled in you. "I can do all things through Christ for he strengthens me." Praying for you and your family.


  27. Hi Donna and everyone,
    I have been brought up close to my biggest fears in my life. I faced major surgery in December, loss of job, loss of a living situation, three months in a homeless shelter, total brokeness before God. I am back online again with a new job that will sustain me, a new apt I can afford - out of that shelter - and a deep, abiding trust of my faithful God of second chances.
    God brought me down through devastation and loss over the last 4 months. I have been through the re-finers fire and I am emmerging stronger and more confident of my relationship with God. I am also in a Christ centered recovery program at my church.
    Thank you all for your prayers all who remember my fall postings here.
    I am alive and well thanks to wonderful doctors, clery, and church prayer partners.
    love to you all

  28. Bless you Marcianne; It took great strength and faith and prayers to over come all you have. When things look the worst and you still try and pray and don,t give up and others pray with you . You can overcome alot of things. I am so happy for you and you will always be in my prayers. And Bless you for letting us know how you are .
    God Bless All Who Prayed for Marcianne.

  29. Great blog and have really enjoyed it. Thank you for writing it and for reading comments.
    Fear to me is evil...Jesus was right on the mark when he said "fear not". To me, to live in fear is to live in hell on earth. It also occurs to me...that we all create our own heavens or hells here! For me, a roller coaster ride just ain't gonna happen- to one of my daughters...yippee! We see thing differently.
    I believe that God speaks to us 24/7. Sometimes he whispers and sometimes he acts boldly with us. If I am smart enough to listen to the whisper and act- he does not need to act boldly.
    I also do not think he cares much about newspaper headlines or fame - but he can use those as well.
    Robert H recognized early on that people wanted hope and encouragement. He took that forward. Hope and encouragement without Christ are not enough. Robert A brought back the Christ/God focus and tried to bring light into darkness at the CC. Now, God has a brighter and bigger place ahead for all of you.
    God's goals for us should be aligned to ours.
    So look at those goals Donna...let go and let God continue to bless your life. Thank you for sharing with us. Carole B

  30. Hi Cysradill and everyone,

    Yes, I am so grateful for all your prayers. I heard a wonderful sermon this morning on anxiety, depression and getting through it with gratitude. Pastor talked about ways to capture our fearful thoughs, nullifying them, and "melting" them with God's love. He testified about his own journey through mental illness and addiction a few years ago. We have celebrate recovery goups at my church on monday nights that were started by saddleback church and rick warren...transforming!! thank you Jesus
    love you all,

  31. Hi,
    I just noticed that I had more postings on this blog from a few weeks back! To Mary: sounds like you really went through it with a rash of health situations for you and several close people around you. I am so glad that you were able to pull your strength by reciting scripture. That is one of the most powerful aspects of is there on our tongue when we need it!! God is always there when we reach out to Him.
    Marcianne, what a tough time you went through...and all of it without our knowledge. Yes, I am sure that you are a must stronger person having come through such a time. Read Romans 5:1-5 It is my life verse and if you are not familiar with it I believe it will also resonate with you.
    I will be checking in again soon as I am coming up on my one year anniversary of this blog! Stay tuned for a video.
    God is blessing all of you, Donna

  32. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear. 1 JOHN 4:18 - Blessings Rose


Thank you for taking the time to comment on my blog. Please try to stay on the topic and remember also that there are many who are struggling through all kinds of challenges. Let's all be kind and thoughtful with our comments please! :D