Living in Fear?

Jogging past the site of the Rental Truck Terror Attack on Halloween in Manhattan, I couldn’t help but shed a tear.

The flowers, piled high in memorial of the lives lost just last week, offered a constant reminder of the horror that befell those innocent lives and their loved ones.


Sadly, our country is not shocked by such violence anymore. I mean, not even a full week had gone by before another tragedy rocked our nation, this time, in Texas.

This type of narrative happens so often, I sometimes wonder if people have started to become numb to such horrific news.

Seeing the mourners pay their respects on the bike path in lower Manhattan, I was struck by how eerily low the number of runners and bikers were.  The once bustling foot and bike traffic, now stagnant, with almost a palpable absence.

Have we crossed the threshold? Have we succumbed to living in fear?

It seems like in recent history, our sense of security has been attacked. It all started September 11, when we first began fearing airplane travel. Followed by the fear of receiving an anthrax-laced letter in the mail. Since then, we can’t go to concerts or music festivals, drop our children off at school, run in marathons, go to the movie theater, enjoy a scenic bike ride, and now, go to church, without being wracked with fear and anxiety. Not to mention the ever-present fear of a nuclear attack, or a cataclysmic California earthquake.

It’s not just a fear-mongering media. These events are actually taking place. The threat is real.

So how do we not succumb to a life crippled by fear?

Because, I’m going to be honest, things seem pretty bleak right now. And frankly, if I didn’t know better, I’d be inclined to think that all of our prayers and petitions were falling on deaf Ears.

I feel as though I’ve spent more than my fair share of time grappling with fear in my lifetime. Having battled a life threatening eating disorder, and then a debilitating auto-immune disease, fear is no stranger in my life.

 

And there were definitely days where there was no hope. Going to bed just meant waking up 8 hours later to the same pain and defeat of the day before.

But here’s the thing I learned about fear.

You can’t cling to God if you’re clinging to fear.

I’m going to say that again.

You can’t cling to God if you’re clinging to fear.

We only have two hands. And if they’re clenched tight in fear and anxiety, then they cannot reach for the Hand of the One who is there to rescue us.

There is nothing scarier than letting go. Relinquishing control, especially for Type A personalities like myself, is a painfully difficult task. Requiring trust. Faith. And a whole lot of courage.

We are not called to be timid and afraid.

God did not create us to mope around, cowering in fear, missing out on life because we’re frightened of any and all potential danger.

Because a life lived in fear is a life that is severely limited.

And living a limited life is like rejecting Jesus’ gift on the Cross — the gift that shattered all limits.

We have been given a life that is limitless. Who are we to self-impose new limits? Based on fear? What is that about?

2 Tim 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidly, but of power, love and a sound mind.”

I believe it was FDR who said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” And even though he wasn’t living in 2017, amid the horrifying 24-hour news cycle, I think he was right on the money.

Now is not the time to live in fear.

Now is the time to live as an example of the courage and peace He brings. To live as a witness of faith in God’s ultimate goodness, even in a world that is not.

The story isn’t over.

The narrative isn’t finished.

Perhaps the waves are just crashing harder now, in anticipation of Jesus’ calming hand.

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BBB: Because we're all recovering from something. // For speaking/business inquiries: beautybeyondbones@yahoo.com

225 thoughts on “Living in Fear?

  1. Our witness is exactly why clinging to Christ is so important, and the best way to hijack and defeat the purposes of evil. If the world can be convinced that the peace and eternal destiny provided through Jesus alone are ironclad against all evil, then even as we lose something, we’ve won.

  2. This was one of your best posts. I was giving you a standing ovation while reading it! I especially loved your ending. It fits what I have learned the hard way several times: “The story isn’t over.”

  3. A wonderful message. “You can’t cling to God if you’re clinging to fear.” So true. Psalm 56:3 says, “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You.” God knows there will be times we are afraid. He understands. This verse has helped me, “Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change And though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea…”

  4. Beautifully written and you are absolutely right…. We cannot cling to God when we are clinging to fear! When thinking about all the things that are happening in our world today, it can be so overwhelming and crippling. It is important to take moments to mourn with our fellow brothers and sisters around the globe who are mourning for the loss of their loved ones. But that being said I too refuse to live a life of fear, regardless of whether or not the possibility of some threat is imminent or not. Ain’t nobody’s got time for that! May we live our days ever the more fully and may the bad things that happen be ever the more reason to live purposefully and intentionally. May we never overlook an opportunity to lend a helping hand or to love others lavishly, and may we leave legacies that last way past our final days here. 🙂

      1. Oh man. Tears.
        Reflecting on the church shooting that happened Sunday, it convicted and SO encouraged and moved me to really do what @ThisDarlingAdventure said– to “never overlook an opportunity to lend a helping hand or to love others lavishly.” I pray the lyrics of “Build My Life” by Housefires over us: “Holy, there is no one like You, there is none beside You, open up my eyes in wonder. Show me who You are, and fill me with Your Heart, and lead me, in Your Love to those around me.”
        Life is too short to not Love Jesus, and Love others, recklessly. ❤︎

  5. If you’ve read my blog you know I don’t cling to God(s). Compared to my childhood we do seem to live in surreal times, though, even though I recognize historically there are worse. But I totally agree about not living in fear. One shouldn’t worry obsessively about that which they can’t control. The best one can do is live smart and be aware, no matter what else you believe. Take care and stay positive.

    1. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts, MC. I’m with ya there – we should live smart and be aware. that’s great advice 🙂 so glad you stopped by! big hugs to you friend xox

  6. There is the old saying If we live in fear the terrorists win. It was about 9/11 but I believe it applies to all of the recent shootings. These people want to go down in history as the ones that made movie theatres unsafe, churches, schools, concerts, etc- it’s their legacy. We as a society have to stop listening to the fear-mongering media and live our lives.

    1. Oh wow i love that saying – so true. We can’t let fear win! you’re right – we need to stop listening and reject that fear mongering narrative. thanks for stopping by:) big hugs xox

  7. Thank you for yet another wonderful message today. You are so right. God tells us not to live in fear. We cannot live with God and live in fear at the same time. You are such a special part of my regular reading that I look forward to your blogs.
    Much love,
    Jim

    1. Hi Jim, thank you so much for your kind words. amen to that – God is in control, and has numbered the hairs on our heads. and gosh, what a kind thing to say. thank you so much! big big hugs to you xo –

  8. Very moving! I, for one, refuse to live in fear! I am safe in the hollow of my Lord’s hand. Hugs & love to you dear friend xoxo 😃❤💛

  9. Hey BBB,

    This happened about 2 hours from my home. I am asking everyone on your blog to please pray for these people. They live in a community about the size of the one I live in, and I cannot even imagine something like this happening here.

    Some parents lost more then one child, which losing one I cannot even imagine losing more than that, I would lose my mind. Can you imagine as a parent going home to those empty bedrooms. I cannot.

    Please pray that during these many days of suffering ahead of them, they will find comfort somewhere in their lives and that God walks them through all of this. Love you and God Bless, SR

    1. Oh my gosh that is so scary. Oh SR, I’m so sorry to hear that. Yes. Let us lift up our prayers for those grieving families. Oh gosh my heart is breaking to read about that. May they Rest In Peace. Sending so much love xox

    2. That’s so sad – the loss of a child has got to be one of the hardest things to go through aside from losing a spouse. I’ll keep them in my prayers!!!

  10. Hey Caralyn. I am so glad that you were out jogging in the same area where that tragedy look place, and letting everyone know that holding on to fear is not the way to live, because Christ is with us. You have a great following, and with such a super, positive, encouraging, honest attitude and outlook you share, many will be blessed and perhaps step out in trust and faith a little more, and a little sooner.
    I love how you share your faith in Jesus Christ, trusting Him with your life, and share the truth in Scriptures.
    From Canada 🇨🇦 I share your hurts in the U.S.A. 🇺🇸, because Jesus continues to tell us to love our neighbour as ourselves. And you are a great neighbour.
    God Bless you Caralyn.
    Luv. 😀🌹❤️😘
    George

    1. Hey thanks George – amen to that! Christ IS with us, so there is nothing to fear. gosh, what a kind thing to say, thank you my friend. I am so touched by that. You’re right – when a neighbor hurts, we hurt too. Thank you for that. sending so much love and hugs xox

  11. It was FDR. I remember JFK saying it. We as a culture are tied to our emotions. The higher the high the more we remember. There are so many couch and sofa “shock jocks.” It’s hard to not be negative against negativity. It’s hard to not turn the other cheek and keep going, like Jesus. I remember a story about when the soldiers came and Peter grabbed his sword. Jesus said no and left with them. I thought about all the death in the new testament and I don’t remember Jesus promoting violence. Ever. Mohammad. Gautama Buddha. Ganesh and Shiva, eh…he was complicated.

    All these religions are representative of most of the world. They all, want what we all want peace. Can we have more than one God? No, but they can and I can accept them without judgement. That is peace. To think we are capable of that no judgement arena in our public squares is, foolish. 😁 Two thousand years ago there was a fool who also died for us. Love. We think of it as romance. Something to buy. Love is acceptance. Jesus. Only had love to give and stopped armies.

    1. that’s a really powerful way to think about it, Kenzie. you’re right – He only had love to give and He stopped armies and calmed raging seas. I am in agreement with you – there is something good to be found in every religion. period. even though people may not believe the same thing, deep down, at the root of all religions, there are certain things that we can all agree on – peace being one. love another. thanks for stopping by. Hugs and love xox

      1. I love Him. I may not have romantic love but, God loves me. I’ve fought for American ideology in the military. It, was a hard to balance it. There was a lot of pain. So much pain. I feel like, sometimes helping in these areas affected by disaster is my penance. God. Did not forget them. God, remembered me and I help them. I’m unsure if that’s how it works but it feels right. It is not the glorious blessings but the small ones.
        I don’t come from glorious. I see people as they are, scared. Then, we weave and mend them like someone helped me when I was little. That’s how communities are formed. Just, added that because there’s a lot of good people out there that might not even know their neighbors. Let alone. A Muslim. A Buddhist. A Hindi.

  12. Kid, I agree for different reasons. Living in fear let’s those who want to terrorize us win. I am a bike rider. The day after the attack I saddled up and rode on the local trail. Smiling the entire way. Why? Because, if anything happened to me the best tribute ever would be to have everyone I know on the bike the next day.

    Yep we as a nation are becoming numb to it, but no way will I let fear stop me from doing anything.

    1. Hey there Tony, thank you so much for this thoughtful reflection. You’re so right – it lets them win. That’s a powerful way to think about it. thanks for stopping by. Hugs and love xox

  13. Fabulous post! I, too, wrote today about the appearance that our prayers are not being heard, but knowing that they absolute are because God will never leave us! Blessings!

  14. “We are not called to be timid and afraid.” This makes me think about when St. Peter saw Our Lord walking on the water and he rushed out to join Him. St. Peter walked on the water too until he looked down, away from Our Lord, and became afraid. Then, he started to sink.

  15. I don’t think that we are living in fear exactly, but we should be watchful and take notice of all the people and things which are happening around us. When I was young, the world was very different. We could leave the doors unlocked at night, the church wasn’t even locked during the week. That has changed dramatically. Keep your faith in God and be watching for the return of Jesus because He is coming back soon! Amen.

  16. What a really well written post. For those of us whose hair is fading fast and we are on the race to our live’s finished let me give you some guidance on the issue of fear For people of my generation as scary as things are now we have seen worse. We are the last generation who grew up (to some degree) without television. We have seen a President assassinated, his brother murdered in June of 1968 as well as Dr. King. and that doesn’t come close to talking about Vietnam, Watergate etc. If you ever want to see what real fear looks like go back and study 1968. My generation has seen a lot and with that comes perspective. We grew up at a time that all out thermonuclear war was a real possibility. Fear is when the one that means everything to you is lying there in the hospital and it’s just you,your spouse and most skilled medical around and hope that it all doesn’t blow up on you. People need to monitor how much of this cable news garbage they watch. I have always said to my life that she needs to be aware of her surroundings. Living in fear in the end is a choice.

      1. I don’t mean to sound “preachy” but some of this stuff is silly on cable news. They talk about the “signs” this criminal was showing. and this could have been stopped like the recent horrible events in New York, Two things get missed. The first is we are the most open society in world history and we have a thing called The Bill of Rights. The freedoms those rights give us are the same freedoms that make us easy targets. Keep up the good writing.

  17. Beautifully written. The women’s bible study I’m in is doing “Breaking Free” by Beth Moore. A couple weeks ago it was on pride. We discussed how having the mindset that God can’t help, or won’t help me, including fear, as you spoke about, is prideful. It’s pride that says you and your problems/issues/fears are bigger than God. Nothing, I repeat, nothing is too big for our God… especially our fears. Let’s take them to our Lord and leave them with Him. He’s already been there.

  18. Another Home Run Caralyn.
    You took us all where we needed to go. I know it did me. Exquisitely.
    I wish the national media would pop you on with commentary. You covered and captured it all.
    Thank you!
    Roland Henderson

  19. Amen! So true, we are not supposed to be fearful because God is our protector! And his angels encamp around us always! Great post! Glad you blogged about this prevalent topic! God bless and much love🙏😊💓✨

  20. 🤦‍♂️

    Humans have been killing each other for at the very least 12,000 years! Archeological remains show mass graves of humans with broken bones and injuries from spear and arrows consistent with murder. Why do we pretend this isn’t our worst behavior? No form of God has eliminated that aspect of humanity…😔

  21. No. No longer shocked. More like sadly resigned to another headline. It’s going to keep happening, so we better figure out how to deal with it. Pessimism? Well, pessimists are rarely disappointed. But gloom only works as your “gas” for so long. God? He’s the only answer. Maybe a mix of resignation that this is Satan’s world instead of railing against the inevitable tempered with the hope that Jesus will indeed calm the waters, now and eternally.

    Just a few more thoughts at Patreon. Powerful stuff tonight, Caralyn. Thank you!

  22. Your insights have to be prompted from heaven and I’m beginning to feel you have been prompted to open a blogging page to communicate important truths. While fear is part of the human experience and we all have it from time to time God wants us to trust Him. He didn’t plan for the mess this world is in, on the contrary, He built a beautiful and tranquil world for humans to enjoy. The wild card is we were created with power of choice, and that’s top priority with God. He could have created us without it, that is we were just programed robots. But God is a social God and we were created to choose either to fellowship with heaven or follow the bad guy. Unfortunately Adam made the wrong choice. Eve was fooled, Adam chose knowing it was wrong and thank you Adam for the mess we now have. That’s why Jesus our incarnated Brother came to personally absorb the sin radiation and provide a way of hope. So continue to hang in there. After this life there’s a better one if we choose it. Otherwise we lose our faith and choose eternal death. I know which one sounds most attractive, and even though I mess up daily He wants me there and will make it possible. So, does that mean I have no fear? Of course not, I’m human, but eventually I’ll learn trust and make Him happy..

    1. Oh my gosh what a generous thing to say! Thank you so much! I’m humbled by your words. You’re so right – free will is such a powerful thing. Because we have to choose to love and serve God. We’re not robots – God wants us to choose for ourselves. Thanks for stopping by. Hugs and love xox

  23. Thanks for sharing Caralyn. I would like to borrow your nickname for to express myself. I was less than Mello…a little Mello Yellow…after what happened. I confess, it didn’t hit me immediately. It took a day. A WHOLE DAY! It bothered me because I was raised by Texas see. That’s what this weeks post was about for me. A note to self. So, thank you for your book – Blogging Tips, for BLOOM, and for those quotes from the bible. They are lovely and spot on for the moment. Thanks again.

    1. Oh gosh thank you so much Ish, I’m so glad it resonated with you. Yeah sad times we’re in right now. So many prayers for those victims and loved ones mourning and hurting right now. Hugs and love xox

  24. Terrific post and no, we must not live in fear. In the UK when you take a ‘touristy’ visit to London, the area around Parliament Square is crawling with armed police – that is how fear has changed us. Back to Manhattan, my heart leapt when I saw the school bus that had been hit by this lunatic. All I could think about was my little girl, just 21 months old in Minnesota. And now we have 26 dead (although not terror-related, but equally shocking), all of those poor souls (including children), massacred by Devin Patrick Kelley, a guy who had lost in life, but heck, who hasn’t?? I have to talk to my baby on skype from 4000 miles away, I have a severe mental illness because some idiots decided to start a war, and yet more idiots thought it we be a good idea if I went along – but none of that makes me want to go out, get a gun and kill innocent people. It really annoyed me when Trump claimed that it was a ‘mental health’ issue that triggered the Texas attack, from his Asia tour – as if it isn’t terrorism, then it will be the good old ‘loonies’ with mental health issues that are the cause of these horrific attacks. How are we supposed to educate people that mental health is a condition, that we are valuable members of our community and that we can contribute a great deal to our communities and society when the President makes comments like that? Ok rant over. Great post Caralyn. I hope you have a great day, God bless you, Rich.

    1. Thanks so much Rich! Yeah, there are so many ways that fear has changed thing. Airport security is another. Which- I’m grateful for, but it’s like…it was born out of fear. Thank you for sharing your story. Yeah throwing blanket statements around are never helpful and always end up hurting people. This is such a powerful perspective. I really appreciate you sharing. Hugs and love xox

  25. You are so right! Fear limits! The devil knows we’ve got so much power but he doesn’t want us to know that, so he brings fear to limit us. I absolutely love how you put this ‘You can’t cling to God if you’re clinging to fear’. Awesome! You can’t serve God and Mammon (Fear)!
    I Pray for more of God’s grace and strength and also comfort and to the bereaved.

  26. Hi Caralyn!

    Perhaps I could offer you a different perspective. First, you should understand where I live. I live in South Africa. Home of great white sharks, hand-sized spiders, the 8th highest murder rate in the world, racial tensions and some would even say slow genocide of the farming community. Oh, did I mention the rough seas? (Called the Cape of storms for good reason)

    It is a beautiful but inhospitable country, and I used to live in a bad neighbourhood. There were many days and nights where I had to literally fight for survival.

    Coming to my point: I grew up like that. Yes, fear is a part of it. But, fear keeps us from doing stupid things. With an ever growing threat, one must be smart.

    One must be prepared.

    The last part of being prepared is trusting God. He protects us. He mourns our losses alongside us. You may not have all the control, but you should have a plan. Then trust God with the rest. I have escaped death countless times because of God’s intervention. And through that trust and planning, fear disappears.

    It is my sincere hope that you find peace and preparedness, and trust God with your path.

    Warm regards
    Havoc

    1. Hand sized spiders!!! Eeeek! But in all seriousness, thank you for sharing this. You’re right – it does keep us from doing dumb things, and then trust God! Thank you for your kindness Havoc. Hugs and love xox

  27. I just finished reading Jeremiah. When God called Jeremiah, God promised to protect and rescue. You can’t be rescued without being in harm’s way. Of course, we learn in the book how much trouble Jeremiah faced, but it is true of us. We are in harm’s way every day, but to fear is to show that we have lost some of our faith in God. Thanks for this post. Wonderfully said.

  28. I was listening to someone yesterday say “fear is the barometer of our agnosticism.” If we truly believe He cares for us and all will be well regardless of how we view things at the present then the story isn’t over and fear is pointless. Easier said than done but I guess faith itself is a progressive journey. I loved what you wrote keep going 😊🙏

  29. Revelation 11 was my morning reading. The “destroyers of the earth” do have their time, and they afflict and spread fear. But we will be praising God for deliverance and for their downfall.

  30. You continue to inspire me. As someone who lives with an anxiety disorder, fear can be incredibly paralyzing. However, I turn to God when I’m feeling scared or fearful. It helps so much!!

  31. Good morning Caralyn,
    I have missed reading your posts lately and I’m glad that I had the time today to read this. As others have said already, thank you for this. Thank you for sharing with us your thoughts, wisdom, and feelings on this topic.
    I thought about the NYC attack after hearing about Texas that night. It amazed me and not in a good way that there were three attacks, three acts of violence in less than a week. It is so crazy. NYC, then the Wal-Mart in Colorado the next day (I believe, or the next day or the two days after) and then Sunday in God’s house. It is beyond sad and scary, but sadder, in my opinion. Sunday night I went outside and stared out into the darkness. At that moment fear began to consume me so much that I wanted to grab my husband, our cat, my three kids in three different states and my two grandkids and go somewhere in the middle of the woods somewhere and live off the earth. To think that people can’t walk or bike without being attacked. Can’t go shopping without wondering if this could be your last day or someone you love. And although there was another church shooting a year or two ago, this one really hit me hard. According to the news, half of those who died were kids. KIDS!!!!! The little girl who was five looked similar to my granddaughter and they share the same name. A little boy shot four times. A pregnant mother shot and killed. Pastor’s daughter. Siblings. The guy’s grandmother-in-law. Seriously, I wanted to run away and do whatever I could to never have to worry about my kids or grandkids or husband, or kitty. Then I believe God spoke to me or put on my heart that I am trying to do things with my own strength or lack thereof, that I am not allowing him to do what he has promised or allowing him to do his job so to speak. Yes, I am still fearful that I will get a phone call or have the police show up at my door and it can be paralyzing, especially, where I have major depression and anxiety which a doctor and therapist say stems from PTSD, but regardless it sucks to feel helpless. I have to try and remember that God does exist and loves me and those that I love and not focus on what awful evil thing could happen to them.
    Thank you Caralyn for letting me share my feelings with you and your readers.
    God bless you, your family and your readers.
    Tiffany

    1. Thank you so much Tiffany, for this thoughtful response. you’re right- -it’s so incredibly tragic. wow what a powerful message you received. it’s so true – we need to allow Him to be our strength and rely on His goodness and power. I really appreciate you sharing your experience with me. what a powerful perspective. Hugs and love xox

  32. Good insight in response to living in fear. I’m sad that my grandchildren (and adult children) are living in a time where real threat of evil has escalated. And at the same time, they have the opportunity to see God’s power dethrone the evil of our day, and to join Him by living lives that point others to Jesus, our true Prince of Peace. 2 Peter 1:3-11, 3:1-18, gives us wise instruction in how we (Christ followers) “ought’ to live in these days. Praying that you will stay close to Jesus, and allow His Spirit to fill and guide your every step.

  33. Thanks, your words are a positive reminder of where hope comes from and how fear is only meant to be directed in one direction and that is in the awesomeness of God. That may seem an odd statement, but if it were not for Christ we could not know the glory and grace that God has poured upon us in great abundance. In Luther’s Small Catechism we are called to “fear and love God” in many iterations. Our trust is and should always be placed squarely in God.

  34. You are so right! We cannot allow a spirit of fear to control us because God did not give us a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind. Amen The reason so much violence is happening in our world right now is because we are living in the last of the last days. The Bible says that men’s hearts would fail them because of the things coming on the earth. We are getting closer and closer to the coming of the Lord. We just have to hang in there and not give in to a spirit of fear.

  35. A beautiful and biblical response. Trials to come may indeed be severe, even more so than now. And that should drive us to cling closer to Christ as the days approach. To our knees we must go to gather strength and hope in Him.
    Blessings in Jesus to you.

  36. To be transparent, the fearfulness of my flesh is still an on and off again occurrence in my life.

    However, I thank Abba Father and Jesus for the gift of the Holy Spirit (my Teacher and Comforter). I am thankful for the truth—I was not given a spirit of fear (or timidity) in Christ Jesus, but of power and of love and a sound mind.

    The past couple of mornings I’ve awoken and felt a pang of symptom of depression and then Abba’s voice in my heart, “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” And. Without hesitation, I immediately said aloud, “The joy of the Lord is my strength.”

    We have to speak ourselves right into the word some days more than others—and aloud so our ears hear the truth audibly.

    We are one with the word which became flesh and is Christ our Lord Jesus.

    For God has not given me (us) a spirit of fear (timidity) but of power and love and discipline (a sound mind)—2 Tim 1:7.

    BBB, this is very much a life verse for me.

    Thank you for believing Jesus and being bold in Him. Eternal love, my lovely sister in Christ 🙂

    1. The joy of the Lord is definitely our strength. thank you for sharing your story, JT. I’m sorry to hear that the past couple mornings have been tough. hang in there friend. sending you the biggest hugs and love xox

  37. You shine the brightest light on the most relentless darkness!! That’s what makes you such an angel among us. Life is too short to live in fear, or paranoia. You have to be wise. You can’t walk around wrecklessly or act mindlessly with your purse or wallet ready to be snatched, or identity ready to be stolen online. We have to find strength and faith in God. We aren’t poo-pooing what happened and la-dee-day. We pray and remember those lost, but we also try to not let terrorists drag us down. That’s what they want to do, regardless of what degree of terrorist they are, what country they’re from, or what. Even the ones not labeled “terrorist” are, because they did what they did to garnish attention and fear. We cannot let them be what we put our priority in. Our priority is in our love for God, and each other with the faith that we can keep living to our best the life He gave us. Love, smiles, and hugs every day Angel On Earth!!! xoxoxoxoxo <3 <3

    1. Thank you so much for this beautiful and generous encouragement, Migueltio. You’re so right – we have to find our strength and faith in God. Sending so much love and hugs xox

  38. People live in fear because the dynamics of this world is what they call life, not the spirit. I’m not afraid of death because the death that I fear is living deeply attached to this life – I have some attachments, but I look forward to being taken by God and experience eternity. I’m coming to NY for Christmas and look forward to it – no fear. If God takes me while I’m there, then he takes me from my favorite place in the world, so would be a blessing. 😀

  39. Yes!

    Since perfect love drives out all fear, living in fear is an immediate indication that Father’s identity has been lost–or perhaps was never truly understood. So is your God big enough?

    But also you know… the really good news is our real life is in Christ, so it doesn’t matter what anyone does to this body because this body is not a lasting investment and we will have new ones in the renewal of all things. Likewise, the life this body lives, it’s just a prologue. We’re just a prologue to a greater eternal story and so all this stuff going on around us while earth-shatteringly heartbreaking, is just stuff. It doesn’t put the tiniest blemish on the face of Jesus or the future in Him. And as I understand that more and more, it changes everything I value in this life completely that I might fear for.

    1. Hey Carson! How are ya!? That’s so true – God is bigger than fear. And you’re so right – His love and keep eternity in perspective – it changes everything. thanks for sharing this powerful food for thought. Hugs and love xox

      1. I’m well thanks! How bout yourself?
        More and more I’m realizing the Christian experience I grew up with was so…below the reality of Jesus, and maybe looks good and right and like the Christian normal but its so cheap compared to the glory of ‘Christ-in-me’… and physical life, possession, hopes, dreams..and fears…it changes everything. I don’t know, I think I may just be rambling now, haha. Anyway…every day is more wonderful than the last with Jesus, that’s all I know (:

      2. 😁 Haha, sure but it’d be nice if they came out as cognitive thoughts 😂 Anyway. 😆 Happy Wednesday! (I started a new job–or rather got hired full time under a new contractor at one of my already jobs–and now Teusday and Wednesday are my weekend *yey* so it’s not pre-weekend for me anymore 😅) Have a lovely day!

  40. Ah, you in New York, me in Texas. So much heartbreak…
    Providentially, just before I checked your blog, I’d pulled together some devotional material to present to our ladies’ group (It’s my turn tomorrow). My source is a marvelous devotional site / blog called “First15.” I’m pasting in a couple of excerpts on Peace…
    From 10-22: “Nothing robs God of his peace. Nothing can take it away. Peace is within the very nature of our Creator.”
    More to your point about fearing danger, this from 10-25: “Jesus maintained peace in the Holy Spirit in the midst of those he loved shouting, ‘Crucify him!’”
    And my very favorite, from 10-26: “We serve the Lord of peace. The Holy Spirit who dwells within us is wholly peaceful.” –which raises the question, If God isn’t worried… why should I be?
    Blessings on you, dear lady.

  41. Super read as usual – thought provoking. When my husband was deployed to Iraq I’d have people ask me all the time if I was afraid of him dying while he was there – my answer after time and thought was “Nope, if it’s his time to die then he will die. Weather it’s here and he slips on soap in the shower or it’s there and he gets hit by an IUD, it’ll be his time.” It gave me a kind of courage for just living LIFE! I don’t test the limits or do dumb things, but I do just live. ❤️❤️❤️

  42. Thank you. I needed to read this today. I was just telling my husband how helpless I felt about protecting our very small children, especially after Sunday’s shooting in Texas. I don’t want to be afraid to take our children to worship. I don’t want to live in fear.

  43. I appreciate your blog. I agree thatany people allow fear to block them from fully living. I have missed too much in life because of fear. I am thankful that I have come to a place in life where I am more able to embrace the richness of life. I am glad that you continue to live your life fully out of faith and courage. Through your blog you continue to both challenge and inspire people into fearless compassionate living. Blessings Roland ❤️

  44. I really needed that one. I have been grappling with fear, God…for years now that I think about it. Too long. No more. Thanks C​arolyn.

  45. This post is so relevant. Some countries have more violence than others but I think there probably isn’t a place on earth where one’s safety can be guaranteed. I live in South Africa and for many years violence has been the order of the day. Everyone’s house’s have burglar bars or some kind of security system. Depending on where you live it isn’t safe to walk alone. It isn’t safe anywhere to be out at night by yourself. But the beauty is that if we put our faith in God we have nothing to fear. I think the early Christian community who were persecuted were much worse off than us. Thank you for sharing your experiences.

  46. I have been hearing this a lot more lately, or maybe I heard it a lot before and it didn’t strike me until lately 😉 But every one says how bad we are now, it’s never been this bad. Yet, reading my Bible, we have always been this way 🙂 Have we not? We didn’t even make it past chapter 6 in Genesis(page 9 in my Bible) before God said He looked over the whole earth, our wickedness was great, and that every imagination of the thoughts of man’s heart was only evil continually-Geneisis 6:5. It goes on to say that it grieved God’s heart that He had even made us. Going on to say that the earth was corrupt and full of violence–Genesis 6:9 :):) Have we really changed that much? We didn’t even make it past chapter 6, we were/are so bad. There are 1912 pages in my Bible, we only made it to page 9. We don’t get any better after page 9 either LOL His Word also tells us the world, and men are evil, and corrupt. AND that we are God’s, nothing can pluck us from His Almighty hands. If we turn to Him, seek Him, He can and will put an end to all this but there is the key WE have to do our part. God loves so much He gave us choices. For this world to get better, we have to decide, good or evil.

  47. Beautifully written from your beautiful heart, Caralyn!

    I pray this often for our Country, cognizant God could have chosen elsewhere for me to live. My responsibility, along with the Bride, is too pray without ceasing.

    if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 2Chronicles 7:14.

  48. That picture of the bridge is epic. I wanna go on that 😀

    I know it’s so sad that this world is cold. I think we all gotta try to bring the love/light of Jesus to them.

  49. Just beautiful. And speaking of beauty, yours emanates from deep within. We are such kindred spirits~and you are 1000% correct……I lived in fear my entire life until Jesus set me free. Now I live boldly and happily, but the tragedy remains……and it breaks our collective hearts.

  50. You can’t cling to God if you’re clinging to fear.
    I love that. I’ve posted before about the difference between healthy fear and panic. A certain amount of fear at appropriate times is healthy. It can keep us watchful and aware of our surroundings and in that way protect us. But panic is never good, and what I’ve seen dominate the past two years is not healthy fear but panic, both on the streets and in our public policy. I know it started with 9-11, but we still haven’t learned as a society how to live in watchfulness rather than panic. One thing that makes this country great is that no one is required to believe a certain way. You don’t have to believe in God if that doesn’t make sense to you. However, those of us who say we believe in God need to set an example of how to live watchfully, prayerfully, and joyfully. As you said, faith comes down to letting go of fear so we can cling to God. That’s how you don’t let the terrorists win.

  51. Beautifully said. You are a brave and bright lady, whose life and light are shining loud and clear. “Fear can only grow in darkness. Once you face fear with light, you win.” – Steve Maraboli
    Carole

  52. Great perspective! Really enjoyed this – we can’t be free of fear unless we’re clinging to God. In His perspective, we find our refuge and strength. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  53. This was a great post Caralynn! The enemy came to kill, steal, and destroy and one of his favorite weapons is fear. It is something I have struggled with my whole life and it certainly has taken my power away. When I keep my eyes on God I have nothing to fear and I can live in His peace, joy, strength and power. Thank you for this great reminder!

    1. amen to that, Tammy — when we keep our eyes on God, we have absolutely nothing to fear! big hugs to you xo

  54. Thank you for your words. I used the exact same scripture about fear in my own blog post yesterday so it really popped out for me. I appreciate the reminder that the script is still being written and that I can’t cling to God while still clinging to my fears/anxieties. <3

  55. I agree with you that I am not shocked by terrorism in our country but I am angry about it. I am 60 years old and have seen trouble and terror growing little by little over the years. It doesn’t need to be this way. There is no sin in protecting our borders and vetting the people who enter our country. We don’t have an immigration policy to be nice guys to the world but use it to improve the condition of our own state. My parents, after world war two, lived in a Displaced Persons camp in Germany for 6 years before being sponsored by the Lutheran Church in America. There was no promise they could come to America but only by the grace of God He pushed the right people to sign the right paper and stamp the right form to allow Pete and Magdalena to board a steamship with my brother, Rob, and come to America through New Orleans to Oklahoma and finally in Indianapolis.

    You can’t always tell who is going to go nuts and kill several people with a gun, truck or knife but it is the government’s duty to protect its citizens by having eyes and ears open for those who wish us harm. God, giving us government, shows His love for us. Through government, He gives us the opportunity to elect leaders who will see that laws are passed via the Congress, the Supreme Court if need be will assure us those laws are just, and the President sees that those laws are enforced fairly throughout the nation. Because the government is run by humans it is impossible for it to be run without sin. We can help the government by being responsible for our own actions.

    Keep writing your nice blog, at least until you get married. : )

    1. Hi friend, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on this issue and for sharing your story. What an incredible life your parents loved. Yes, let’s be responsible for our own actions indeed. Hugs and love xox

      1. Thanks. My parents were from Latvia. My father fought for Latvia against the Russians until he was forced on a boat to Germany where he was run over by a truck, captured by the British, sent to a hospital and spent the remainder of the war in a British PoW camp. My mother was a refugee walking from Latvia, escaping the Russians, through Germany. She was one day out of Dresden on foot before the Allies bombed Dresden to the ground. She could see the flames of the city for days and days. They were glad for the relative quiet of a steady life in America. Whew!
        Thx again and peace with every step you take.

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