Thursday, March 5, 2009

Living a life of freedom versus fear

Note: This is the strangest thing, but when I posted about Texas on Tuesday March 3rd (showing up as the post before this one) it knocked out this post which was originally posted last Tuesday February 24th but combined the comments on this one with my Texas post. I have no idea what blogger is doing, but it's strange. So...I will be posting for Friday March 6th soon.
When my husband Gene was in the 4th grade his teacher told him to come to the front of the classroom and figure out a math problem she had written out on the chalkboard. He tried to get out of it, but she insisted that he do as he was told.

With much hesitation Gene placed his hand in the palm of Fear as it led his little body to the chalkboard. Standing in front of his classmates he became so overwhelmed that he couldn't solve problem that he had an accident in his pants.

Filled with not only fear but also shame, he stood with his chin on his chest as his teacher ridiculed him and pointed out to his class that his pants were wet and that he didn't have an answer to the math problem. To this day when Gene tells that story you can just see how much affect it has on him even though he is now 44 years of age.

That day in 4th grade at the sweet age of only 9 Gene was given something no teacher should ever give a child...fear.
From that day forward, he would be afraid to speak in front of people.
Afraid of not knowing the correct answer if asked a question.
He would be afraid of looking stupid in front of his peers.

When we are fearful of something it can overtake us like a wave crashes over a surfer. We can drown in the pool of fear so quickly that we just stand there not even trying to be rescued because we feel so helpless.


A four letter word with a huge impact on us if we allow it the freedom to come into our lives, get our focus off of God and immobilize us.

So how do we take something like what happened to Gene as a child and process it differently in our mind when we become an adult? What happened to Gene as a child does not fall into the category of "most embarrassing moments". Instead, it is a memory that if Gene allowed it to flex its muscles could still cause his bladder to lose control if he chose to keep this to himself. It could keep him from being a youth leader in our church and talking in front of teenagers. It could keep him from sharing Christ with his friends. It could keep him from forgiving others and hold grudges. It could..but it doesn't because Gene chooses to trust in God.

There are many reasons as women that we face fears.
Fear is not from God and he doesn't want us to live in a state of fear because then we are not able to be completely used by Him and for Him.
We have to trade our fear in for trust and learn to believe in the God who is the Conqueror of Satan, the father of fear.

So how do we do that?
How do we take what happens in our life and allow God to use it for His glory instead of allowing the enemy to use it against us?
How do we become a woman that takes her fears and says "here Lord, take this from me because I want to live in freedom"?
Honestly...I have no idea as I have fears of my own, but I know of a woman who does know how and wants to share the journey God has taken her on with us. She wants to teach us how to live a worry-free life right here every Tuesday.

Micca Campbell
from the speaking team of Proverbs 31 Ministries wants to teach us how to turn our fears into faith. I had the privilege of hearing Micca speak at the She Speaks conference this past summer and she was such a blessing! She has a testimony that God keeps adding to and has blessed her with the gift of communicating His greatness in a way that you want to know more of her Jesus.

Just this month she has come out with a new book that I am proud to say will be our 5th
YES to GOD blog study book...

This month Micca is also featured in the Proverbs 31 Woman Magazine with a story titled "Overcoming the Fear Factor". She also graces the cover of this monthly magazine with her beauty.
See, here's my copy... If you have never read this magazine I HIGHLY recommend it. You can click on the name of the magazine to start getting your subscription too!
So...join me on Tuesday, March 24, 2009 as we begin the next YES to GOD blog book study and learn to live a fearless life with our sister in Christ, Micca Campbell.
Click here to order your book now!
If you think you might join Micca and I on this next adventure please sign up below under Mr. Linky.
Visit Micca's blog, Reflections or read her devotion on P31 today called
~Many Blessings~


Jill said...

Hey Lelia,
Hope all is well! I feel like I'm living in a bit of fear right now, so looking forward to the study. Pray you have a good day, Jill

Laura said...

yay! I know this is going to be a wonderful book because Micca's devotionals and speaking content has always stirred me. I can't wait to get started!

On another note...

Do you have that teacher's address? Wouldn't it be a nice surprise for that teacher to wake up one morning and find an angry mob of mothers and friends on her door?

What in the world? Why do people like this pursue a teaching career? I'm praying for that sweet little boy your Gene was...for healing from that in the deepest of places. Sounds like he has already allowed God to use that, but I need to pray about the picture that brought to my mind.

Blessings, Lelia!

Mel said...

Oh this sounds like a fabulous study!!!

Runner Mom said...

Hey, Lelia! What happened to Gene wimply infuriates me as a teacher! I hate that he had to go through all that he did that morning at school. One day, she will be called on by God about that! I am so gald that he has chosen to give God that fear and to be freed from it.
I read Micca's devo this morning...awesome! The book looks great, sweet friend. I may have to join y'all in this one.

Love you!

Tammy said...

Count me in! I had to take a break from the last study,too much on my plate.

This book has come at a perfect time, I'm raising a teenage daughter. :)

love and hugs~Tammy

Darlene said...

praying about it, dear friend!! I will let you know if I get my act in gear!

Paula (SweetPea) said...

Yay...I survived the wait without bugging or texting you. I'm a little baffled as to the previous clue which is not gone Mickey Mouse + P31. I forgot the other portion.

Oh well, hopefully my curiosity won't kill me like it killed the cat.


Yolanda said...

Oh, yippee! I have my book ordered and am ready to re-connect with many of you!


Stacy said...

Dear Lelia,

I continue to be amazed at how God is using you, through these book studies, to be such a blessing to me. The timing of the current study and the upcoming study have totally coincided on the topics I am facing through pastoral counseling. Self Talk, Soul Talk...has been a total affirmation of what I felt to be God's leading. I can hardly wait to see what He will do through this next study. THANK YOU, again, for taking on the responsibility of "hostess" and for continuing to bring such valuable, Godly information to us.

In Him,

Paula said...

Hi lovely Lelia, as you already know, I will be joining this study (blessing and thanks going out right now!). I am looking forward to it immensely! My heart is aching now after reading Gene's story as my mind shoots back 30 years to when my grade 3 teacher wouldn't allow me to use the rest room in class and, yes, the inevitable happened. I still suffer the effects of HER decision of disallowing me one of life's necessities. I'm not sure exactly how that decision has shaped my life, but I know that it has and this study will no doubt help me get it all worked out. Have a GREAT weekend! I'll be thinking of you and praying for you. Love ya!!! xo

Sue said...

I can relate to Gene's experience as a child. I had trouble getting over the bullying I experienced in upper grade school, and have had trouble trusting people, and whether they will "like" me. It's embarrassing as an adult to admit that, but God is working in my life to heal me of that. He has helped me move forward, and not look back except to see His hand in things, and how my experiences have shaped who I am.

Thanks for hosting these studies, and I plan to join you again for the next one.

Anonymous said...

I am on board. I ordered my book as soon as I read your post!
One of the things I am continually amazed over is how God has used each and every chapter of this book and Behind Those Eyes to speak to me and keep me on track with him, and make me aware of things that were going on.
As I have been finding myself filled with fear and anxiety lately, this one comes at the perfect time. Especially as I am dealing with fear, looking at the upcoming "she Speaks." I am going, and, God help me, I felt guided to take the speaker track... (and here I thought I was supposed to go as a writer...)
All the break out sessions ended up being focused towards speaker stuff as well, as I prayed through them.

So now I am trying to deal with that, as well as still struggling with some depression, that i just realized today is an issue that has popped back up... (will I ever be over that???) and trying to figure out what to speak on, and teach through and what part of my testimony am I supposed to share, and how can I do it in only 3 minutes!
OK, and by that run on sentence you can guess my state of mind! :)

Again, I can't wait for this study, and I am so blessed that you are willing to continue to host these... they are more than a blessing to more than one of us! I wouldn't have made some of the friends I have without these studies! You being one of them!
Love you so much, and continuing to pray!

Edie said...

Yay! I made it before the study begins this time!! God was already prompting me to get this book when I came over here. I'm looking forward to it Lelia!

Rich blessings to you!!

Letters From Midlife said...

Just what I need and although I've followed your posts during past studies, this is the first one I'm actually finding a way to buy the book so I can do it along with everyone else.

Mari said...

I had to miss the last study so I could write two books of my own. However, I'll be done with them in time to join the 5th study. YIPPEE! Looking forward to it!

Sharon said...

I have to get this book so I can join in. Looking forward to this!

Casey S. said...

This is my first visit to your site. I came across it through Micca's. It sounds like a wonderful thing to get together and discuss the book. Lord knows I could use some information on how to become worry free. This is all such a new journey for me. I was baptized on 1-11-09 and I'm excited. I also have a 18 year old son that will be having a baby with his oh so young 16 year old girlfriend. I just thought I'd stop and say hello. :)

Paula (SweetPea) said...

This is really weird...I'm clicking to comment on this post for today but it is giving me the comments from Feb. 27th.. oh goes.

I love, love, love this post. So much I love about this. First, I love that you saw Tony Evans and that is better than the pastor I mentioned in my email...I will not mention here to avoid "offending" anyone. I'm not that familar with the one mentioned in said email but oh I use to listen to Dr. Evans on the local radio station until it was purchased by K-Love a national Christian station. Oh brother, than man can preach a message. I love that the message was intentionally for you. But girl, let me tell you, you'll never be disappointed with any of his messages. If you can get his messages online and listen at work or download an CD for the car, it's well worth it.

I love all of your commentary about your trip and the boots, hats, jackets, etc.

You three are absolutely stunning. Sounds like a fabulous trip.

Oh, and then precious. How neat Liz knows his wife. But then you have to consider I guess at some point in time every "famous" person was in high school at some time and so many people would have to know the stars. It's precious that he stopped before leaving. I bet Gene is on cloud nine. Or better yet, has Gene cut his picture head out and placed it over yours? Is he red with envy. :-)

So glad to hear from you and about your trip. Fabulouso!!
Love ya,

Stonefox (otherwise known as Heidi) said...

Wow, you've had some excitment! I love Dr. Evans, although I don't get to hear him now. Which just made me think of looking to see if he has stuff on itunes...hmmm.

Laura said...

Looks like you all had a wonderful time. And a little soul rest along the way!

love you, girl!

Liz said...

I am totally laughing out loud! And I did look pretty cute in that purple jacket! LOL! Too bad it was hundreds of $$$!
I knew you weren't feeling yourself, but we had fun anyway! What a blessing to spend the evening with you - and we did have fun at dinner, didn't we?

Liz said...

Oh I almost forgot the REAL reason that I came over see how many people had their Bible Study up! I am SO behind. I have read the chapter, but I want to write my own Friday is great with me!
Love you!

Liz said...

Well, I posted it anyway and will link when you get Mr. Linky up on Friday! XOXO

Anonymous said...

YOU GIRLS LOOK FABOULOUS!!! Headache and all--and Emmit Smith--so cool! What great fun!

HIS Daughter said...

Lelia...I'm confessing to you that I have already confessed to Liz..

I AM COVETING...big face and all!

But I love you guys so I'm really happy you had a wonderful time BUT

I wish I could have been there!!

I told Liz I would have been satisfied to just go to church with her!

Also..I knew from pictures how beautiful Liz and Kelly were....but have been truly holding back on yourself -
You look like a super model!

You girls faith and love and beauty.

I love you all and your hearts for HIM,

Darlene said...

I love that God spoke directly to your heart, and THEN gave your hubby that gift too. How cool.
I love seeing pictures of you too, cute thing!!! It's so nice to see our friend's faces!
so, can I come next time?

Julie said...

Looks like you had an awesome trip....

I loved the Emmit Smith story!!


Susan said...

Oh Leila,

Thanks for sharing your amazing weekend with us.

You are such a GREAT story teller!

I pray ONE OF THESE days, you'll share one of you and I, yep complete with pictures too!

I'm counting on this.

Oh, I got to hear Chris preach at out church the other day. What a blessing.

Have you visited his church?

Hope all is well my sweet friend, I miss you dearly...

Love you♥

LynnSC said...

Oh my Lelia... I was so jealous when I saw that first picture!! I love Tony Evans... not to mention the rest of his very talented family!! And then... that last picture of you and Emmett Smith... my husband would have died for that experience. I can't believe that you didn't take us with you... You should have known all this great stuff would have happened!!

Sounds like a great time. My little Bible study group is going to Memphis in October, and I can't wait.... and now I am going to be very disappointed to only see Beth Moore... . NOT! Just joking.... I can't wait to see her!

Love ya girl,

Wendy said...

Sounds like a great trip!

I, too, love those moments when God speaks straight to you. That moment when you know in your heart He's heard all your thoughts and struggling and now He is talking to you. WOW!!

Tracy said...

What an incredible trip! Wow, first Tony Evans and THEN Emmett Smith!?! So glad you girls had such a great big Texas fun time! Thanks for sharing it! = )


Beth.. One Blessed Nana said...

Lelia - I just finished reading the story of your daughter. I can so relate to you my friend. I have had not one, but 2 daughters get pregnant at age 16 and become mothers at the age of 17. My oldest daughter is now almost 24 and has 3 precious children and she and her husband are such fine Christian parents. My baby daughter who is 19, is expecting her 2nd little boy in 4 weeks. She also has a wonderful husband and both my girls are raising my grandbabies in Christian homes.

I know it isn't easy - the 2nd time around either, but you are such a strong woman of Grace. I admire you so much!. I hope you will stop by my blog one day and get to "know" me too.

In Him,

Paula said...

Hehe, yes, the whole Blogger/Lelia mix up had my head in a spin for a bit! Glad you're behind in posting as I am behind in getting mine done up. Am now beginning the last chapter, so I better get my act together! Love the photos from the Texas trip, you stunner you! Meeting Emmett Smith...woo hoo and well done. Love ya xo

Lisa said...

First, I loved this post. You spoke to so many hearts with this topic, including mine.

Second, I must thank you so much for your sweet, sweet voice mail the other day when I was gonna speak. Girl, that was so awesome. It blessed me so much, as you always do.

Third, on a much less spiritual note, you look SUPER HOT in the pics from your Texas trip!! Girl, you have the best hair EVER! Simply

And have me in suspense as to who you met who knows me! I'm a Texas girl, you know, so I think it must have been when you went to Texas. You must email me soon and fill me in. I'm so bad with secrets. :)

Love you tons!

Anonymous said...

My book came!!! Woo Hoo!
I am ready to go for the next study... and can I tell you girlfriend that this study has been an amazing ride for me?!
The last couple of weeks have been exactly what I have needed to read... to the "t" Unbelievable if I didn't know that it is God's hand orchestrating it all!

Love you,

HIS Daughter said...

Hi Beautiful Lelia,

I am praying I can do the Bible study with you guys..I have alot of irons in a bonfire right now..but I'm praying about it. you know how righteously indignant I am about that story and Gene???!!! Ok, forget that..plain MAD!!
I have to stop..can't go there right now!! I'll get worked into a lather!

Third...How do you get your comments so that you can just e-mail the commenter back from your page?

Love and prayers,

Carol said...


I'm so excited, I ordered my book yesterday. Should be here on St.Patty's day. I love these book studies, you pick the best books.

And on the note from the story about Gene. Oh I'm just furious, how could someone do such a mean thing to a child. I don't understand why someone who would want to do that would be a teacher.

Okay calming down now.

Love ya,

Dana said...

Hi! I'm a missionary in Africa and would LOVE to join your Bible studies. It takes me a while to get a book though. Do you have any idea what your NEXT study will be on so I can go ahead and order it??