Girlfiriends in God - May 14, 2008


May 14, 2008

Escaping the Stress Trap

Manage Your Fears

Mary Southerland


Today’s Truth

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” 2 Timothy 1:7 (NKJV).


Friend to Friend

We do a lot of laundry at the Southerland house. There always seems to be a load in the washer that needs to go in the dryer, a load in the dryer that needs to be folded and a load of dirty laundry waiting to begin the process all over again. Our washer and dryer have numerous settings for everything from hand washables and fine delicates to cotton and permanent press. After a few loads that yielded pink male underwear and sweaters shrunk to fit Barbie dolls, we decided to wash everything on one setting. Heaven help the man, woman or child who dares to change that setting.


When a life crisis comes, we generally have an automatic setting of fear and anxiety. The good news is that we can change that setting to peace and joy! How? By counting on God.


  1. Count on God to be with you. We battle stress every day, but God is faithful and we can count on Him to be with us every step of the way. Worry is trying to fix tomorrow’s problems with today’s resources. God gives grace in daily doses.


Isaiah 43:2 When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you (NLT).


  1. Count on God for direction. Life can easily spin out of control in a whirlwind of confusion. God offers direction and guidance through His word, through His people and through the Holy Spirit.


Psalm 32:8 I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you (NLT).


  1. Count on God for provision. God goes before us in every area of life. Nothing that happens to us will ever surprise God. We must be careful to stay away from scenario sickness of “What if”. There are no “what ifs” when we choose to trust God for every need.


Isaiah 65:24 I will provide their needs before they ask. I will help them while they are still asking for help (NLT).


  1. Count on God for protection. God will fight for us when we are attacked. When we follow God’s agenda, God fights for us. When we follow our agenda, we are on our own.


Exodus 14:13 The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still” (NIV).


I recently saw a bumper sticker that read, “If God is your Co-Pilot, switch seats!” Many of us have good reason to be afraid because we are in control. Fear feeds stress. Stress thrives in an atmosphere of fear and doubt when our hand is on the steering wheel of life. We need to move over, surrender control to God and find the peace waiting in His hand.


Let’s Pray

Father, my heart is filled with fear. It seems like I am drowning in the uncertainties of my life. Lord, help me to surrender my fears to you. Strengthen me to face each one and walk through it, knowing that you are with me. I choose to trust you and doubt my fears. I choose against stress and for peace. I choose you, Lord. Amen.


Now it’s Your Turn

Make a list of your fears. Surrender each one to the loving control of God as you pray, “I will fear no evil, for you are with me.” Burn the list as an offering of praise and thanksgiving to God’s perfect peace enthroned in your life.


More from the Girlfriends

One of my pet peeves is a broken promise. If you tell me you are going to do something…then do it! We tend to over-promise and under-deliver. Not God! He is faithful to fulfill every promise and deliver more than we ever dreamed possible! You really can trust Him, friend. Need help on your journey? Check out my weekly online Bible Study, Light for the Journey, and visit my online store for books and CDs that will strengthen and equip you for every step of your walk with God.



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Originally published Wednesday, 14 May 2008.