Have No Fear

There are so many things I want to teach my kids, so many spiritual truths I want to pass on. Like Deuteronomy 6 tells us, God wants us to impress on our children’s hearts the things He is teaching us. As a D6 family we try to look for opportunities during conversations, or plan times to sit down and talk with our kids about important topics and truths. But we also realize that our kids learn a lot from J.J. and me by watching how we do life….how we make hard decisions, react to stressful situations and walk with God in everyday life circumstances.

This is true for every family, and it’s always a process, isn’t it? I love hear how other parents are seeking to live out D6 principles with their kids. So, today I invited a good friend of mine, Micca Campbell, to share her thoughts on how parents can show their kids how to live by faith or fear. Micca has a lot to share on this topic, much of which she covers in her soon-to-be-released book, “Untroubled HeartFinding Faith that is Stronger than My Fears.” Here is what she had to say:

Psalm 127 paints a wonderful picture of God’s plan for building successful, worry-free families. The Psalmist explains that Lord builds the home, but the parents are the gatekeepers. A gatekeeper is like a watchman or overseer who monitors the family’s activities and decides who and what is allowed access into the home. The gatekeeper should be aware of what is going on in the house and who is influencing the household. The watchman isn’t afraid to let the kids’ friends come over, because he (or she) decides who stays and who leaves, who comes back and who doesn’t get to return.

A good gatekeeper also protects the hearts and minds of the children by monitoring what they watch on TV, view on the Internet and listen to on their iPods. It’s the watchman’s duty to monitor the home until the children can supervise themselves.

The watchman isn’t afraid to let the child learn and grow through trial and error, nor is the watchman afraid to trust the child again after the child has made a mistake. The watchman knows their actions and reactions are teaching their children on a daily basis to live in fear or faith.

As the gatekeeper of our homes, it’s our job to teach our children how to live a life of faith. Unfortunately, as parents our lives are sometimes marked by fear rather than faith.

A few years ago, my husband, Pat, was offered an accounting job that included a big promotion. It was what he had been working for, praying for, and waiting to happen. However, once he settled into the new position, he had regrets. Not only did he have to learn a new job, but he also had to clean up the chaos someone else had left behind. On top of that, the company’s financial status was hanging in limbo. Pat’s worries weighed heavily on his shoulders. As the provider for the family, Pat was deeply concerned about losing everything. He suddenly found it difficult to trust God.

Before I knew it, his concerns and anxieties became mine. Looking back on this frightful time, I can’t help but wonder what Pat and I were building into our children—faith or fear? As Christians, we should be the last people to be afraid of anything. We claim what Paul asks us in Romans 8:31—“If God is for us, who can be against us?”—but act otherwise when the foundation of our home is shaken. Our children shouldn’t see fear in us. We can’t say with our mouths that we trust God and contradict that trust with our actions. So what does it tell our children when we’re afraid to go to the doctor when we begin experiencing symptoms? What does it teach them when we constantly worry about who will move in next door or when we don’t trust God to provide financially? We teach our children live in fear instead of living by faith when we fail to trust God’s ability above our own.

It took Pat and me awhile to admit that our resources weren’t limited to our own finances. We had God’s unending wealth and provision available to us. It was foolish to attempt to get on our own what God was so willing to provide. We decided to trust God—no matter what.

By putting into practice what we learn from God’s Word, we make knowledge a reality in our life. One step of trust leads to another until we find ourselves living carefree in God’s tender care.

In faith, Pat made an appointment to talk with his old boss. He expressed his desire to return to his old job. Surprisingly, they were thrilled to have him back. Pat resigned from the new job and resumed his old position. Looking back, Pat and I realized we prolonged our peace by fearing the outcome. Once we got around to it, trusting God was so much easier—just the lesson we want to convey to our children.

At first, we were overcome with worry and stress, but we realized that we couldn’t be afraid and exercise faith at the same time. Our house couldn’t have two builders. It was either us or God. Eventually, we gave up our restless cares and let the Lord’s peace flood our soul. We simply rested in God. What better place is there to be? Nowhere—especially when our goal is to teach our children how to live a life of faith.

Copyright 2009, Micca Campbell – All rights reserved.

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More Mom Give-Aways

Please share your thoughts on this topic in the comments section and you’ll be part of today’s give-away which includes Micca’s book Untroubled Heart:Finding Faith that is Stronger than My Fears and a year’s worth of Family Devotional Magazines from D6.

 

 

To be part of these give-aways, click on “comments” below. PLEASE include your email so we can get in touch if you win and I’d love to know where you are from.

About Renee

Renee Swope is a Word-lover, story-teller, heart-encourager and grace-needer. She's also a wife, mom, friend, daughter and author of A Confident Heart, a Retailers Choice Award winning book that became a best-seller and has been published in six languages, with over 150,000 copies sold. Renee is speaks around the country at women's events and and serves on the writing team for DaySpring’s inCourage blog. For twenty years, Renee served in leadership at Proverbs 31 Ministries and as former co-host of the ministry's radio program, “Everyday Life with Lysa & Renee.

Comments

  1. Just the message I needed to hear as I woke up overwhelmed with all that is going on. It can be easy to give into stress and worry and it’s bad enough thinking about the effect that has on me let alone my 3 little ones.

    Obviously this is the message I needed to hear – my pastor preaced on the same verse yesterday! And really if God is for us, who can be against us? Thanks for the reminder!
    Blessings,
    Jill
    jillberan@yahoo.com
    Riceville, IA

  2. Renee & Micca … I can't tell you how much I needed this today! We are struggling to get by on one salary … and I do mean struggling! We trust God every month to keep our heads above water. All while trying not to let on to our 4-yr-old our struggles! Thank you for the reminder to trust God above everything else.
    carlyn
    cceeyore@mac.com
    clayton, nc

  3. Just the message I needed to hear as I woke up overwhelmed with all that is going on. It can be easy to give into stress and worry and it’s bad enough thinking about the effect that has on me let alone my 3 little ones.

    Obviously this is the message I needed to hear – my pastor preaced on the same verse yesterday! And really if God is for us, who can be against us? Thanks for the reminder!
    Blessings,
    Jill
    jillberan@yahoo.com
    Riceville, IA

  4. Why is it often so hard to trust God when He has proven over and over again that He is completely trustworthy and knows what is best for us?
    Great post.
    sarahlscott@gmail.com

  5. Anonymous says:

    Renee & Micca, thank you so much for your post today. I have long struggled with fears and do not want to pass that legacy to my children. It's a stronghold that I am currently battling and looking forward to conquering with Christ's provision! I needed this reassurance to stay the course and continually seek Him to build my home.

    Thank you!
    hlridge@hotmail.com

  6. Anonymous says:

    Thank you so much for such a wonderful post! I am contantly worried about something, I actually worry so much sometimes that I am literally sick. This is something that I do not want to pass on to my children.

    Our family has had such a hard time financially, I have had to take a job outside of the home for the first time in years, and now am worried about the little ones being in daycare, missing work, and on and on. I expressed these fears to my Grandma the other day, her response was ‘if you worry, you haven’t given your life over to God 100%’ so your post was great for me today, I will definatley check into the book that you are giving away. Thank you so much!
    God Bless,
    Cristy
    cristy.douglas@yahoo.com

  7. Renee,
    It seems like God truly knows when we are struggling with something and he is trying to teach you a lesson. Most recently mine has been FEAR. It began a couple of weeks ago with our Beth Moore Bible Study being on Fear, my own personal quiet time leading to scripture on Fear & having faith, such as the other night I found a scripture in Micah 7:7 that I absolutely loved that reminded me that my God hears me. How often do we find a scripture out of the blue in Micah? Then Friday night I was able to hear Micca speak at a conference on what else but Fear, Removing the Mask. It was awesome and I loved her, So did my college age daughter. I seem to have the most fear over the protection of my children. Why do I have such a hard time remembering that they are Gods children in the first place he has only entrusted them to me for a while here on earth. I believe the most important thing for us to teach our children is even when we do fear, and I think we will as we are human, they see us praying and taking all to our heavenly Father in prayer. That has paid off for me so much, because now that my children are teens they do the same thing and they often ask me mom please pray for me. The sweetest thing is when my 16 year old (14 then) was staying the weekend away and she called home and I was not feeling well and she prayed for me over the phone.PRICELESS!
    I am sorry for such a long post, but as I said fear has been what God has been dealing with me on lately and this was just one more way for Him to speak to me.
    Have a blessed week.
    Hugs,
    Margaret

  8. Anonymous says:

    Fear is one of the biggest things I deal with. It taints everything.I don’t want to pass this on to my children. I would love to have this book.
    Brittany
    miller0712@yahoo.com

  9. KimAmburn says:

    I so needed this! My company is in the middle of a major layoff – 50% of my department – and I’m waiting to hear whether I’ll lose my job. The job market in the area we live is horrible, but we can’t move b/c of my husband’s job. I’m trying to have faith but feel like the man who asked Jesus – “I do believe; help my unbelief.” I hadn’t thought what my fear might be showing my kids. Thank you!

  10. Lisa V-Wahington, NJ says:

    Our family is trying to do that, put our worries and cares in His hands. We have a ways to go.

    Lisa V
    lisa07110@yahoo.com

  11. WOw thanks for the reminder. Reminded me of a time about 8 years ago. I struggled through situational depression after losing a Sister in law to suicide, then a diagnosis of my husband’s disease 6 months later…It was a horrible time, and I probably instilled fear into my children. Never thought of it that way. Today I am in a much better place, and thank God for showing me what it truly means to suffer depression. I know how it is for other people. I can help them through that….

    Shannon
    smarklow@gmail.com

  12. This is so appropriate, especially during this unknowing economic crisis. Do you think is wanting His people to believe in Him more? And we shall….
    Leslie
    junglegym@hotmail.com

  13. JottinMama says:

    Oh, this post was just wonderful. I have dealt with fear my whole life and now that I have a growing family of my own – I really don’t want to pass that along to my kids!

    This post, and Micca’s thoughts REALLY made a few light bulbs go off in my head this morning. Am I passing along faith or fear? Wow. So powerful.

    Thank you so much for sharing! I want that book!

    Have a lovely week!

    Blessings,
    Kate 🙂
    khthankful@hotmail.com
    Columbus, OH

  14. Beverlydru says:

    I have 2 very dear young women in their twenties who I am mentoring and both are focusing on the lesson of “Overcoming Fear with Faith”. I would love to share this book with them. Thank you for the opportunity! Beverlydru at gmail.com

  15. Mom2Navybrats says:

    Thank you for such a beautiful post. Fear can consume our lives if we let it; not only in our financial situations, but in our health and what type of adult/teen our children will be. I think it is also very important that we pray for God’s will to be done in our lives and that we listen to how God speaks to us. He is stronger than any problems that come our way.

  16. Worries and fears are not the legacy I want to leave for my children. When things get out of control, I try to control and not trust God. Thank you for giving me a reminder to trust God.
    Christine
    tandvmom@gmail.com

  17. This was such a very needed post! We are a family of 5 soon to be 6 on one income . We are in need of a larger , much larger home and a much , much more reliable minivan than the one we are currently driving. Along with extra space inside of it. It can be very overwhelming as a stay at home mom with dad at work all day and into the night. I do the bills , and all finances , ontop of all the housework and caring for the kiddos.
    So I need to hear this often to have faith , to not fear , to allow the burden and worring to be lifted and given to my husband and ultimately to God ! Thank You , again ;o)
    Nicole
    laslavnm@zoominternet.net

  18. Kristy Baca says:

    I love this devotional today! I am going to read and meditate on the passage mentioned today. I guess I never realized how the stronghold of fear that I had, could affect my children. I,though, have shaken those grave clothes off of myself and have allowed God’s speak truth into me, and that in turn has allowed me to speak truth into others. Praise be to God!

    Thanks
    Kristy Baca
    bacakris@yahoo.com

  19. Great job, Micca. The part about being fearful to make a doctor’s appointment was so true for me. Diabetes runs in my family and I have been fearful of making the appointment to get a check-up. I need to take good care of my body and trust God no matter what happens.

    Stephenie
    carlson2398@roadrunner.com

  20. Why is it often so hard to trust God when He has proven over and over again that He is completely trustworthy and knows what is best for us?
    Great post.
    sarahlscott@gmail.com

  21. momagain67 says:

    Such a timely message that this economic downturn is giving us a great chance as parents to teach and instill faith not fear into our children. May we be careful how we live this out.

    pitkin5@comcast.net

  22. Thank you so much. I find myself stressed and worrying and we truly don’t realize the impact it has on the children. I am working on this among MANY other things this year. The book sounds wonderful.

    Have a fantastic day.
    cswartz12@msn.com

  23. Thank you so much for this post. Micca’s words about parents being the gatekeeper of our homes and children’s lives touched me so much. This past year we have been going through so much with our oldest (19 yo) daughter. Last summer, soon after she turned 18, she moved out with her boyfriend after she got drunk with him the weekend before and had to call us to come pick her up because she couldn’t drive. We were the gatekeepers that we believed God calls us to be with our children as you talked about, trying to be the examples, monitoring TV, the kids they wanted as friends, etc. We never drank, never allowed them around that, raised them to love the Lord. But she turned away from us and God. My fears were going crazy then! While she was living with her boyfried, she would not talk with us, or when she did it was always ending with me in tears and her telling me that it was our fault because we sheltered her all of her life. The boyfried eventually made her move out, broke up with her and she called crying asking if she could come home. There was no hesitation, we went to pick her up immediately. Loving her no matter what. She is now living out of the home again, in a better situation, but she is not living for the Lord. I still have fears, but as hard as this has been, I know, I know, I know with all my heart that I did what the Lord comands us to as we raised her and am still praying for her to return to the saving grace of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

  24. tiggerdaisy says:

    I loved this message Micca! Thanks for having her over Renee! 🙂 🙂

    Rebecca
    tiggerdaisy@gmail.com

  25. Wow! Loved how you explained how we as parents are the gatekeepers and watchmen to our homes. I am going to do a further study on this. This has been an answer to prayer. This and many of your other post. I was praying God would bring me someone with wisdom on parenting. I feel what I am doing isn’t working with two of my children. The answer came in not a lady with experience from my church to mentor me but through your post on 1/20 passing on our faith is easy when they are younger, as they become older it is not what you say but how you live that influences their faith. Like a light bulb moment :). Then today with the gatekeeper and watchmen and many of your other post. Thank You for allowing God to use you to teach others. This has been great teaching for me and life changing on raising my children in the faith anf to not fear. I loook forward to reading your new book. Again Thank-You!
    Denise
    RSmith281@comcast.net

  26. How exactly true! My husband recently did exactly that – voluntarily stepped down into a lower paying position which has made him much happier and has less stress but, since our budget was very tight before the move, has been difficult for me – just because I’m afraid. I’m thrilled that he has been able to take the job that he wants but find it difficult to dream about new things with him because I’m worried about where the money will come from. I heard Micca speak Saturday at Pursue the Passion, and her insights into this topic are wonderful – as was this story. Thank you for sharing!

    lehrerin@charter.net
    Roxboro, NC

  27. I love it!!!! Thanks so much!!!

    – Wendi , College Station, TX

  28. Wow! I’m really touched by all of your comments today.

    Like you, I have many anxieties. Yes, I have been liberated from most, but let’s face it… Whether we’re talking about raising kids, our finances, our health, or how much weight we’ve gained this month, fear is a powerful emotion!

    I’m learning, however, that faith in God truly is stronger than all my fears. I’m praying that each of you will join me in taking Peter’s advice. He tells us to “cast our cares on God.” That’s not all. Peter tells us why we can cast our worries on God—because He cares for us!

    So, go ahead friend. Cast away! God’s shoulders are big enough to carry our concerns. To top it off, our children will see what living by faith is all about! Blessings ya’ll!

  29. Lynn Cowell says:

    Renee & Micca,
    Thank you so much for the reminder of Who is building the house. What we would we do without Him?
    Lynn

  30. All day today I have thought about taking matters into my own hands. Knowing I had yet to really talk to God about it and surely not to listen. Now I see that I have totally put the cart before the horse! Thanks for the scripture to back this up! I so desire to be a D6 mom!!
    dearingfamilycircus@verizon.net

  31. lisasmith says:

    I often stop to remind myself that the best way to pass on my faith to my children is to model it in a real way. I love this example of faith or fear. My husband and I were just talking about some things we would like to build in our children and have started asking God to build them in us first!

  32. All day today I have thought about taking matters into my own hands. Knowing I had yet to really talk to God about it and surely not to listen. Now I see that I have totally put the cart before the horse! Thanks for the scripture to back this up! I so desire to be a D6 mom!!
    dearingfamilycircus@verizon.net

  33. Joanie Butler says:

    Thanks for this message today ladies. I laid my financial fears down in December when I finally gave in to my doctor’s advice to quit working and apply for disability. Although at this point I don’t know if my application will be approved, I do know that my God has me in the right hand of His protection! Praise His name!

    The one thing that struck a note with me from your post today was that as parents we are to be “gatekeepers.” The one area that I have been struggling with in the past few months is the television. I have gotten to the point where I would not really care if we did not even own one.

    However I find that this is an area in which my husband and I do not see eye-to-eye. If he is at home, and awake, the television is on.

    I have been praying that the Lord would bring unity of purpose to this area of contention within our home, as I worry about the effect that some of the programming may have on our 4-year-old. I am not asking that God convince my DH that my way is right; to the contrary I seek God’s will on this issue and pray that we will both hear His voice clearly and be willing to follow as He leads.

    Parenting can be so very difficult, yet so tremendously rewarding! 😉

  34. Thank you for this! We are preparing for our first baby and faced with the decision to purchase a newer used van, which is safer than our current cars. BUT we will have to get a car loan in order to do so. Rather than worry about it and try to figure it out on my own, I am resolving to give it wholly to the Lord and trust the decision my husband makes. I know that being “on the same” team as my husband will make our lives as parents much more peaceful. vwilson7@gmail.com

  35. Anonymous says:

    Renee & Micca, what a blessing and encouragement you have been to me today. Finances are a huge burden on my heart these days. I am learning to trust God in new and mighty ways, which is a good thing! I still lapse back into worry and allow the limitation of my human perspective to reappear far too often but God is so faithful. This was a great reminder to be mindful of what I am teaching my children through these circumstances.
    Renee

  36. Thanks for posting this article!

    Being a police wife I constantly get asked; “how can you do that”, how do you not worry all the time”, or “don’t you spend the entire day/night”. The worst comment is; “I don’t see how you can do I could never be a police wife”.

    Don’t get me wrong, I do worry. But I also made a vow when David first became a police officer that I would not spend my days and life worrying about him. What good was it going to do me? None! Instead I let God worry about him. I have taught my girls the same thing. As far as the comments made I don’t respond. Some might not really want to hear my answer and you know the saying if you can’t say something nice don’t say anything at all.

    There are other areas of worry and fear in our lives and I have to admit I’m bad about letting go. I deal with anxiety issues and many stem from an abusive childhood. So I worry if I have upset someone when they get too quiet and so on. But I am learning to give all of that to God because living a life of anxiety and worry and fear is not fun.

  37. Anonymous says:

    I heard you today on K-Love and jotted down proverbs31.org on a piece of paper while driving. Just had a chance to check out the site and D6 (so exciting!). Last night I had my three children at the Apple store to fix my son’s ipod and before I knew it my ten and six year old were watching something inappropriate for their age on U-tube. I don’t even let them go on U-tube!! Between making new friends, listening to the radio and just being out in public at the park, I am always on my toes. I am going to read the gatekeeper blurb to all three of them because this is something I am so in the thick of right now. A million thanks to you for what you do. God has been working on me today and I am so thankful.

    Mary Beth
    mbsalmon@sbcglobal.net
    santa rosa, ca

  38. I think she “hit the nail on the head” with this one. I think most of the time I try to rely on God but find myself trying to solve problems and find answers to questions, not realizing what I’m showing my daughter too. I will refer to this post quite often as a reminder of how I am living my life in front of my child. I needed this post because right now I don’t feel as if I’m doing all that good of a job. Thanks Renee and Micca.

    Diane
    alainasmom@homerco.net

  39. Thank you so much!! My husband is a pastor and we are currently between churches. The finances will only last so long, but God is in control! Satan is really attacking me in the fear department, and I am fighting to lean on God is stronger than “he who is of the world”.

    Even in this difficult time, it has been amazing to watch God provide. I am trying to instill in my children thanks for all that God is doing for us, and I need to heed my own advice.

    Thank you!! I really needed this as I sit on the front lines.

    Michelle
    michelle@thekarrfamily.net
    Huntsville, AL

  40. Beautiful thoughts were never so clearly spoken.
    Thank you Renee and Micca.

    Melissa G

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