Day Two of “The 7-day Doubt Diet”

Hi friends, sorry today’s post is late. Life is a little more than I’ve been able to physically manage today. I have a sick little one at home. And it’s more than just a fussy day, since she’s not able to communicate what she needs or wants and she’s very frustrated. One of the valleys we’ve been walking through is with our precious 3-year old, Aster, who we adopted from Ethiopia exactly two years ago. She was recently diagnosed with a speech disorder. She cannot say more than 5 words and she’s been digressing even more this week.

She’s also shown signs of a possible attachment or anxiety disorder and it’s just breaking my heart. I’m grieving the loss of what I’ve longed for now for over a year (to hear her precious voice); wading through the sadness of feeling like my little girl is locked inside and can’t come out. We’re going to be okay – today just brought more than I anticipated. But, God knew. Today’s devotion was perfectly timed for me, reminding my heart once again that He is for me, and He’s for my girl. As I take steps down this broken road I wasn’t prepared to walk, tears flow, and then God whispers, “I’m in control, you can trust Me in this, too.”

Day 2: Beat Up or Built Up?

Taken in part from Chapter 6

© 2011 by Renee Swope with Revell Publishing. All rights reserved.

Food for thought: What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? (Rom. 8:31 NIV)

One morning I woke up feeling beat up by discouragement. My mind was being bullied by thoughts of doubt. I can’t do it all! I am not cut out to be a wife, mom, and leader of an organization that ministers to women all around the world!

My thoughts were against me, and my feelings were too.

As I lay in bed feeling completely inadequate, my radio alarm came on. Suddenly my thoughts were interrupted by Twila Paris singing to me. With confident assurance, she spoke truth to my soul, telling me this was no time for fear, but a time for faith and determination. She challenged me not to lose my vision or be carried away by my emotions, but to hold on to all that I had hidden in my heart, and all I believed to be true. Then she reminded me of the most important truth of all: God is in control.*

When I heard those words, my thoughts were aligned with God’s truth. It changed my whole perspective. I went from feeling afraid to feeling determined. From feeling out of control to knowing God is in control. I was glad I had set my radio to a Christian station the night before so I’d be awakened by encouraging music and truth that morning.

We have the choice either to let doubt beat us up or to let God’s truth build us up. If we have Christ in us, we have full access to God’s power and His promises to live with a confident heart. But it won’t just happen because it’s possible. We have to take action. Just as I had to tune my radio to encouraging music, we need to get intentional about tuning our thoughts to God’s thoughts toward us, every day.

In the same way a radio has AM and FM frequencies, so do our thoughts. They are either AM (against me) thoughts or FM (for me) thoughts. The truth is, we are often our worst critics and have a lot of AM thoughts. And if our thoughts are against us, our feelings will be too.

When thoughts and feelings of doubt come, stop and ask God for His perspective. Compare your thoughts to His thoughts, reflected in Scripture. Do they match? If not, look for a promise in God’s Word to replace the lie that has filled your heart with doubt.

Here are some AM and FM thoughts to help you get started:

  • When doubt comes against me, saying I’m weak and all alone, I will focus on the truth that God is for me! I can be strong and courageous because the Lord my God is with me. He will never leave me nor forsake me (Deut. 31:6).
  • When doubt comes against me, saying I’m not good enough for a certain role or position, I will remember that God is for me! He says I am His masterpiece, created to be new in Christ so that I could do good things He planned long ago (Eph. 2:10).

Lord, thank You that in Christ I am a chosen woman, a royal priest, a holy daughter, a woman belonging to God. When doubt tries to bully me, remind me that I have been called out of the darkness to declare Your glorious light. I pray that You would teach me how to rely on the power of Your promises and remember that You, my God, go with me to fight for me against my enemies of insecurity and inadequacy. You give me victory. In all these things, I am more than a conqueror through Him who loves me. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen. (See 1 Peter 2:9; Deuteronomy 20:4; Romans 8:37)

*“God Is In Control,” © 1993 by Twila Paris. All Rights Reserved. From He Is Exalted: Live Worship CD.

Doubt Diet Tip: When you go on a regular diet, it’s helpful to start a food journal to keep track of what you’re eating. That way you can notice unhealthy habits and find healthy alternatives.Today, I want us to each start a “thought” journal to keep track of what we’re thinking so we can identify unhealthy “against me” thoughts and replace them with healthy God is “for me” thoughts. Here is a free download of  AM/FM Thoughts from A Confident Heart, chapter 6.

Let’s Talk: Oh friends, I’ve loved reading your comments, praying for you and watching you encourage one another!!! Over 150 comments on day 1. Oh how I wish I had time to comment on each of them. Just know I am reading them all and praying for each of you. This is what I hoped we’d do: journey TOGETHER! And God is using it already to encourage those who are talking to each other, encouraging, praying for one another and sharing what God is showing them. Don’t miss out – be sure to click here to go back to my website (if you’re reading this via email) and then click on “Share Your Thoughts” below this Day 2 post.

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. There have been so many days that I have gotten up feeling like I can’t do all that has to be done in the day and still be good or do a good job at each of those tasks. But as I am slowly learning to lose control and let God take over then I am seeing that God is leading me and showing me what really has to be done and what can wait or is not as important as I thought. But I have to stop and let Jesus remind me that he is for me and I can do all things through him who gives me strength.

  2. Kyndle Joyce says:

    Some days I feel so down on myself. I woke up at 3:00 am just to lie there wondering if a decision I had made was the right decision. Some days, God’s will for me seems so clear. Other days – not so much. I feel that I am missing His direction for me. Afraid of doing something wrong. Fear of taking the wrong steps. Worry over this or that. It is a hard and hurtful way to live. I have to constantly say to myself that God is with me. He is watching over me. There is nothing that I could do that God cannot fix. He is all-powerful. He can do anything and everything. I am blessed. I thank God for being there to remind me how much He loves me.

    • Kyndle,
      I can relate — you sound like you might be a perfectionist (like me) with unreal expectations on yourself to do everything perfectly right. This is something I’m struggling with now and have to keep reminding myself that God does not expect me to be perfect — that he loves me in my imperfect ways and that the only one who was ever perfect was Jesus. It’s hard, because I’m a people pleaser and don’t want to let anyone (let alone God) down, but as you said, it’s a hard and hurtful way to live. I’ll be praying for you!

      • Kyndle Joyce says:

        I just wanted to thank you Amy. I am a perfectionist – but mostly with myself. Not that I wish this thought pattern on anyone, but nice to know that I am not the only one. Thanks for praying for me. I will pray for you also!

    • Ladies this is just awesome that you all have the same sort of fears and doubts that I have (NOT THAT IT’S GOOD TO FEEL THIS WAY) it’s just amazing how the Lord knows EXACTLY what I need each and every day!!! Thank you all so much for being so open and honest and for sharing your thoughts and feelings I will keep you all in my prayers it’s as Renee told us she wishes she could read every comment and then pray for each individual but has not got that much time again I just thank each one of you and may the Lord our God be w/and Bless each of you.

      • Kyndle Joyce says:

        Thank you Christy. As women, I feel we face so many things that men may never face. Also, as women, we seem to find comfort in knowing there are others that understand what we are feeling. I can only say that I appreciate knowing that someone is out there praying for me. All prayers are welcome! Thank you! I will be praying for you also. God Bless!!

  3. Renee,

    I will be praying for you, your daughter & your family. Just yesterday we received results from the last of 4 tests my daughter has had over the last 3 weeks. The fear was that she had a brain tumor. Praise God all tests have come back clear. She has been diagnosed with atypical migraines which we can deal with. During the last several weeks fear & doubt have overwhelmed me at times. Many, many times I had to turn it over to God. I clung to the promises in Roman’s 4:20-21 “Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.” I know He has you and your family in His hands.

    In His Calm,
    Mary

  4. I related to your post yesterday when you mentioned calling doubt “worry” or “fear”. I’ve labeled it something else, because overall I feel fairly confident. But I struggle so much with what others think of me and with disappointing someone, waking up and worrying, saying yes to too much because I don’t know how to say no that I decided this would be a good step for me.

  5. Jeanie Kelley says:

    Will be praying for you and your entire family. I was surprised by saying that doubt and worry or fear go together, but in a way it is true and it struck me in the heart. That has been what I have been dealing with for so long. I am finally gaining the confidence to see that the doubt I had was worry and fear. I will begin keeping a journal on my thoughts. The ideas from the doubt diet have really encouraged me. Thanks so much. Jeanie Kelley

  6. Peggy Kennedy says:

    Mary, It is so good to hear your precious little daughter doesn’t have a brain tumor: I can’t imagine what you must have been going through nor what Renee is going through so I will keep you and your families in my prayers. Today’s verse has hit home for me too. For the past two days I have been feeling so down because of my AM thoughts, then it was like I received a warm embrace from God and it was like I knew someone was praying for me. Just now reading Renee has prayed for each of us yesterday is like another big hug from God. Today I am so thankful for your prayers Renee.

  7. Oh, thank you, Renee, for your sincerity and openness to share what God is doing in your own heart, life and family. God is so good. I thank Him for your Doubt Diet and showing me the roots in my own life that need to be given to Him. We adopted from China last year and I understand your heart, we are dealing with alot of similar issues. Praying for you and your family. God bless you in your faithfulness.

  8. Elizabeth says:

    I, too, woke up this morning feeling inadequate. I just wanted to put the covers over my head and stay in bed all day. I had a Christian music station on my radio. I don’t know if that is what finally got me out of bed, because I don’t remember any of the songs I listened to, but I believe it was. Thank you for sharing about your young daughter. I have no children, but can feel your pain and anguish as you deal with the roughness of your day. Praise God that he never gives us more than we can handle! hugs and prayers to you and your family . . .

  9. It’s nice to know I am not the only one who feels less than and self critical. These comments help so much.

    God bless everyone and it is so refreshing to see such encouragement from others towards one another.

  10. Every since High School, I have always wanted to do it all. During that time my wise mother placed limits on my activities. Then I graduated from college and became a wife, mother, and employee. But that wasn’t enough. I had to lead both the youth and women’s ministries at church and go to grad school at night in my spare time. But fate placed limits on me once again.

    After a serious car accident and a traumatic brain injury, I often wonder…’what is God’s plan for me now?’ The kids are grown and I’m struggling with the call to tackle other projects…write a book, become a sign language interpreter, etc. I can’t even find the energy to keep up my own home. How can I tackle a task this large? Whenever I pray for guidance I’m given a positive sign, but is this really a message from God or just my own ambitions talking? Or am I using that as an excuse because I’m too afraid to go forward in the direction He wants me to?

    • Hi Twila-
      I can totally relate… I’m in the earlier stages of what you describe, but my heart understands. I have come up to obstacles that seem impossible to climb…. I put my head down and realize if God gets me to it, He’ll get me through it. If its something that HE wants me to do, then I can’t rely on my own energy… we’ve been given much and think that we can do it on our power… God’s power comes into play when we feel that we don’t have the resources to complete the task at hand. His power is made perfect in our weakness. We have to be brave and take the leap of faith and make room for God to work in our lives. I often have to remind myself to get out of the way. Hang in there….

  11. Rebecca A says:

    I have struggled with this since I can remember. My thoughts have never seemed to be “right”. This is tough especially if, like me, you’ve been saying it to yourself your whole life. And it seemed like no matter what others said that contradicted what I thought, I still thought the AM thoughts. In the book Thinking. Loving. Doing., John Piper and David Mathis In the book, they state, “Don’t believe everything you think. Sin is our mental illness.” We are pre-conditioned to see what we want to see and believe what we want to believe. It is through learning the truth through the Bible and believing the words God has given us that we can become free from our thoughts. We need to take captive our thoughts so that they don’t control us but rather, we can control them. “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:5

    I am praying for Renee. I don’t have children but do know that God will be glorified through you and your children. He will not give you more than you can handle. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

    In Christ

  12. I’ve been so encouraged by you, Renee, and all the ladies who are sharing their stories. I’ve been struggling with doubt and worry for two months now. It’s good to be reminded of how to combat lies with truth. I still have a ways to go, but it is getting better. I know God is faithful and true — even when I doubt. Praise the Lord!

  13. Hello Renee and friends,

    I have the same negative thoughts. I see writings you have done and it makes me want to go back and read the chapter you have talked about. I am getting better at hearing God talking to me. Sometimes it seems like it’s loud and clear. Other times, I struggle to hear. I know he has a plan for me. I wish he would give me a hint to what it was. I am one of many who is struggling to find a job. I wish he would let me know what direction to go in. I have done a lot of interviews, but I never hear anything after that. I’m feeling frustrated as to why nothing seems to be working. I will be praying for you and your family Renee. Keep us posted on how your beautiful little girl is doing.
    Maureen

    • Rebecca A says:

      Hi Maureen,

      It is during times like this when you have an opportunity to truly draw close to God and trust in Him fully. We have no idea what tomorrow can bring, but we do know that tomorrow God will be just as faithful as He is today and that He will love you just as much as He loves you today. God will provide you with what you need. Draw near to Him and you can find strength.

      “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

      I am praying for you, friend.

  14. Thanks everyone for opening up and sharing. It helps me so much to know I’m not struggling alone with doubt. Reading others posts is so encouraging to me. Praying for Aster and for you, Renee.

  15. I wake up feeling inadequate almost daily. I started a new job two months ago, and each day I feel completely useless there. I constantly doubt my ability to succeed, and even more, I continuously doubt God’s love for me. How could God love someone who has made so many terrible deliberate mistakes? I’ve broken His heard over and over and over again. So many days I just don’t feel worthy of anyone’s love. I don’t have close friends and I’m not sure I have any self-respect left. Reading these devotions is always encouraging, but far more times I let doubt beat me up than let God’s word build me up. Even after reading these words, it’s hard to believe those promises could apply to me. I definitely appreciate them though!

    • Betsy-
      There is no limit to God’s forgiveness…. he calls on us to forgive 7×70, (pretty much no limit). We get knocked down, daily… sometimes it feels constantly… but know that if you put your faith into Jesus Christ, you are a child of God, and His forgiveness is limitless. We try to box God in and think of him from the limits of our own faulty, sinful human capacity… and we need to realize that God is so much larger than anything we could imagine… Unconditional love, and limitless forgiveness is pretty unfathomable for us… we just don’t have the capacity to understand it…. so rest assured, no matter how many times you’ve fallen away from God- He hasn’t moved, He is steadfast in His love for you, and his forgiveness is unending.

      Take care Friend…
      -Courtney

    • Betsy, you are loved so much by God and I love you as a sister in Christ. Don’t give up hope, keep affirming to yourself that God does love you – it’s true!

  16. Oh, beautiful Aster… and her mama. Praying with you both.

    Singing it with you, sister:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FiEB6mNpNU

    How I love you. Cry and kneel and pray with you — praise Him with you.

    All’s grace,
    Ann

  17. Annette K says:

    It still amazes me how God knows what we need to hear at the exact time we need it, He proves Himself in control each and every day, reassuring me that He is always right here with me, these Doubt Diet devotions and another awesome tool that God uses to encourage each of us. My Pastor tells us, we are all princesses because we are the Kings Kids…I thank God for choosing me to be one of His own.

  18. Renee remember that even though Aster cannot speak well right now, or perhaps understand your words, by your actions towards her she knows how much you love her. Love conquers all, and this too shall be conquered! Our God is bigger than any disorder that comes our way.
    I am so encouraged by everyone on here, and I am praying for each request. I too am learning to conquer my doubts with the threat of my husband losing his job, slow work, and wondering if that paycheck is coming this week. I am working to focus on the positive, and when the negative jumps in, I remember who my Father is, and the ultimately He is in charge here, not me!

    My favorite scripture:
    He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge;
    his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. Psalm 91:4

  19. Kim McCarthy says:

    what a perfect devotion for me today! Just feeling a little overwhelmed and can not even put my finger on the reason why!

    I am praying for you and for Aster!

    I love the Twilla song you quoted today. I have often sung that to myself over and over again!

    Thank you again for your words and your obedience to what God has called!

    Kim

  20. Wow! Thank you for your day 2 word! I was feeling completely inadequate and the devil was beating me down with negative thoughts and the bad thing is that I was believing him. Thank you thank you thank you for this lesson. It hit home for me today.

  21. My son is dealing with an anxiety disorder and the medication prescribed causes him to move his arms like an autistic child sometimes does. It was so discouraging to realize the medicine was not going to work and we are having to work really hard with his school to help make some accommodations. I just have and had a lot of AM feelings especially I can’t do this again.. But your devotion reminded me that I can do this and have to stay focused on the journey… Don’t let the doubt over take everything.

  22. I have had trouble keeping the negative thoughts under control. On Sunday, I laid down for a nap, curled in a ball, feeling like a frightened child. I was talking to a friend about it, and she told me, at those times, to picture myself being held in my Heavenly Father’s arms. It seems incomprehensible to me. I don’t remember a time when my earthly father held me in his arms, even as a young child. He loved me, I know, but I don’t remember a closeness to him.

    I long to be held. My husband has what seems to be Asperger’s traits, like my son. He is not affectionate in his words or his actions. I struggle with loneliness at home, paired with my tendency toward depression. I know God loves me, but I still don’t know how to receive that love.

    • You know, Rhea, when I was a child I used to curl up in my bed scared of goodness knows what in the darkness in my room… my mom used to tell me to pray to Jesus and He’d take away my fear. My response to her was “I need Jesus with skin on”. Sometimes we feel like the doubting Thomas because we feel that we need Jesus with skin on, we long for something tangible that we can touch and feel. We want to feel those arms around us. Sometimes God will put a friend in our lives to do just that, especially if we feel like we don’t have those connections at home. I don’t know the answers…but I do know that God loves us with an unconditional love. He’s standing right behind us, tapping us on the shoulder, waiting for us to turn around…. we feel blind, desperately groping around in the darkness searching for something grab on to. God never changes….He is the steadfast rock in our lives. When we feel the darkness surrounding us, we can turn towards the constant light of Jesus. God gives us the strength to get through the periods of darkness in our lives…. when we rely on Him instead of our power, it gives Him room to shine…..

  23. I definitely am one who has AM thoughts. I am a perfectionist and it’s easy to get down on myself. I find myself so frustrated when I can’t do something (even if I actually am not doing that bad at the task). I need a daily sometimes an hour by hour reminder of FM thoughts. Thanks for this reminder Renee. I will definitely pray for you with your little one. I am one of God’s miracles when it comes to talking, sports, and academics. Please know He can work a miracle in each of your child’s lives. 🙂

  24. Renee…WOW! With everything you have endured today, you still took the time to share your heart and passion with me and some many others. God’s incredible goodness shines through you:) Fear and doubt have been my companions since childhood. It started with my parents telling me that I would never amount to anything. In addition, they were critical and controlling, always “against me” but never “for me.” I guess because they beat upon me all my life this comes natural. It is so hard to trust God’s love and his best for me. At times, I feel as though I live in fear. I am constantly looking for the other shoe to drop. I am so grateful for this “new season of harvest” and can’t wait to see how God will use this for his good. So thank once more for stepping me and others through the 7 – Day Diet.
    In Him,

  25. I don’t think I will ever look at negative, self-doubting thoughts the same way again! Thank you so much for these AM/FM thoughts examples, Renee. I practice scripture memorization, which has helped me immeasurably, but I often have difficulty recognizing the scripture as directed at or meant for me personally (if that makes sense). These examples show me how to turn the scripture into a personal format and I will follow these examples in the future. The AM/FM is a great visual also that I believe will help me to more quickly recognize when I’m thinking against me thoughts and turn them around to for me thoughts. Thank you again!

    • Angie, I know what you mean and I have experienced that to whether the word is for me. But thank God that I know that it is – Praise the lord. I am glad that you have too. Amen.
      Renee I stand with you and our fellow sister in christ in prayer for the complete health of your daughter and for strengh for you and your family. Be encouraged. xx

  26. I always struggle to believe that I can work on more than one “trouble area” at once. While I know in my head this is possible, and believe that Scripture applies to EVERY aspect of my life, I have yet to find the ability to do it, and therefore constantly battle the thoughts that come with my “failures”. Sometimes it helps to just realize that others understand, have been or are there now, and that I WILL figure this thing out. Sometimes you can forget that in the middle of living life.

  27. Beautiful, Renee.
    I am so glad you are going through the doubt diet here. The truths God spoke through you in your book are so powerful. And I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this day. The AM/FM thoughts. So, so good!

    Praying for you and your sweet Aster. So glad I know you are in not just good hands, but the GREATEST hands. May you feel His powerful and yet oh, so tender hands holding you and your family so safe, so tight.

    Much love,
    K

  28. I needed this reminder today! Thanks for doing this again! “God is in control, we believe as his children we’ll not be forsaken.”

  29. I am so thankful I came across this journey! Several months ago I attempted to download your book “A Confident Heart” on my nook and it would not download. Tonight I was helping my husband with something on the nook and remembered I had not read the book. It downloaded and I also had the Seven Day Doubt diet. I could not get to the diet analysis from the nook so I came to your website to try and find it. WOW! Was I amazed to find this journey that you have started. As a leader in a fairly large corporation I have been struggling with a recent employee related issue, I have been crying out to God to bring restoration but have found myself becoming so frustrated that the issue has consumed my thoughts. After reading chapter 1 and doing the devotional I know realize that doubt has me weighed down not the circumstance! I am so ready to shed this excess baggage so that I can spiritually be able to function so that this battle can be won unto the glory of God for everyone involved. Thank you for your faithfulness, I am excited to be apart of the journey. I pray that the Lord touch you and bless you and bring healing to your precious little one!

  30. Thank you for the encouraging messages. They are helping me to find confidence to press forward. There are some areas in my life where I allow to be intimidated.

  31. What a blessing this post was to me today. Thank you Renee. I often feel like I don’t measure up when I’m feeling overwhelmed as a full-time working mom of a 2yr old and a 6-month old. With no free time and an ever growing to-do list, I’m struggling to appreciate this season of my children’s lives while yearing for peace and rest. But I will replace those defeated thoughts and focus on the truth that God is for me! I can be strong and courageous because the Lord my God is with me. I need to remember that the joy of the Lord is my strength, no matter how many hours of sleep I (don’t) get…

  32. I pray for your little girl Aster and your family during these difficulties. I’m a speech-language pathologist and see what parents and families go through. It is so important to teach her as many forms of communication as possible (for ex: signs, gestures, pictures) while still encouraging the verbalizations. Children that use other forms of communication that is non-verbal speak quicker than when not using them. I explain to parents that it’s a bridge to verbal output. Studies demonstrate this and this has been my experience so far. The frustration with not being able to communicate your needs also reduces because you now have other ways to communicate. I’m sure your speech therapist is covering the bases but email me directly if I can help.

    Thank you for the work you do. Helping us all realize our beautiful potential as we carry the light of God in us at every moment of every day. Blessings to all!

  33. Ingrid Flores says:

    I know how you feel with your baby girl. You are not alone.
    My family to has a sweet little girl that was diagnosied with a chronic disease
    That isn’t nice and it is embarrassing. Oh how we agonized prayed and were
    exhausted with worry. But praise God she continues to grow and flourish
    Our lives have been complicated by more than just that. But I always know
    That life will work out. It has to, because God is for us! Thank you for taking the
    time to encourage all of us.

  34. This has taken me a long time to figure out. When people would say, “Take your thoughts captive” I remember thinking, what does that really MEAN? What does that look like. Once God revealed it to me, I am much more quick and able to take those thoughts captive and change my thinking. It doesn’t always happen right away and sometimes, I just don’t see it for what it is right away. Memorizing scriptures is so important for this battle. And then coupling it with Christian music. We Christian women need to be honest with each other. “Fine” should no longer be acceptable as an answer. Realizing we’re not alone can be such an encouragement! Thank you for the wonderful devotion today. I’m going to end my day with it 🙂 I love going to bed with encouraging scripture on my mind.

    Blessings,
    Mel
    Please feel free to stop by: Trailing After God

  35. I have not been able to get to this 7 day diet. I been going to the Drs because i will be going in to have my knee took care of. I sorry but i will dry to get back on it has soon has i can. Love and God be with you all.

  36. Renee

    I am praying for your daughter to be well.God will do his good miracles upon her.Renee talking about doubt yesterday gave me lot of thinking.Most of time I spend doubting my self,thinking that I am not a good mother and wondering that will I be a good wife to my husband as we getting married in December.
    But again I always kneel down talking to God,asking Him to Give me power and strenght.I had a money problem for planning this wedding thinking what am I going to do,I was afraid of going to bank to loan some money because I was blacklisted.But on Monday the 10/10/2011 I approached the bank loaning R50 000.00 and guess what…It is aproved.With God’s mercy now I can plan my wedding with no doubt at all.

  37. rhoda ramluckan says:

    thank you Renee for this incredible diet.it is a relief to know that I am not alone.
    Many times we lack confidence in ourselves and let the past dictate to us.It is time to let go and let God have His way in our lives.As women we tend to let oyur spouses and children bring us down,but praise the Father for teaching us to reach out to Him.Many times i felt alone and incapable of achieving my daily goals,but I have learnt to ask Him to help me and I have found that it gets done so quickly.
    I have learnt also that at my weakest point,He is the strongest and I will forever be reminded of His presence…for He said in his word that He will never leave me nor forsake me.
    Thank you once again Renee and everyone involved in this Doubt diet for being and inspiration.God bless.

  38. Hi Renee,
    I just read the P31 devotion for today and wanted to say thank you. Thank you for being willing to walk and share the grief path that I am sure took significant time. Praise God that you can now share the victory he has given! And you can now walk victorious! I also read that your sweet daughter is sick and is having trouble with speech. I am praying for you this morning. Please be encouraged by how God is using you each day to minister. Thank you, Renee!

  39. Our God is awesome and amazing. He always gives us just what we need. His Words cover every area of our lives. May we all be tuned to FM thoughts today! Thank you, Renee, for sharing them with us.

  40. Kristie A says:

    Self-doubt and inadequcey are things I have dealt with for many years. Our youth pastor just recently started taking online classes so she “audited” her work load and made a list of things that others might want to ‘take over’ for her. As I read through her list two roles excited my spirit. I shared with her that I would do those however, since then I keep questioning myself if I am able and capable to do the tasks and to do them well.
    I look forward to each of these ‘diet’ letters.

    • Don’t give in to the doubts Kristie. He quickened your spirit to these roles and He will see you through! Lean on Him!

  41. Thanks for sharing your heart with us.

  42. Reading your post today brought me back 17 years to when our sweet boy was diagnosed with autism. How I can relate to longing to hear that precious little voice! For us, sign language and pictures helped tremendously until he found his voice. We also dealt with severe anxiety and many, many other challenges along the journey, but praise God! – he is now an honors student in college pursuing a career in writing. I know too well the aches of a mama’s heart, but am so deeply grateful now for the opportunity to have traveled this road with my son, and wouldn’t change a thing.
    Praying for hope and strength for you!

  43. Ellyn Harris says:

    Praying you feel God’s strength… for this new day! I will be praying for you because I know that you know God will make a way where there seems to be no way… oh yes he will! I will forward a copy of my testimony to you… I believe it will encourage you and stir your precious faith in our loving Father! Thanks so much for all of the time and energy you put into lifting each one of your “sisters in Christ”…. Have a peaceful, blessed Wednesday!

  44. Hello Renee,
    I pray God’s blessing on you and your family and a complete healing of your daughter. You hold fast! I will encourage you with a word from our teaching on Sunday, God is always up to something good! I thank God for thie 7-Day No Doubt Diet. It is a blessing to hear from others and to know that you are not the only one with struggles with fear, doubt and no confidents. I pray that we all trust God our Father to strengthen us and launch us to that place with Him to be all that He created us to be.
    God Bless!

  45. Thank you so much for all your thoughts and insights. I have always doubted myself and have felt I’ve no purpose. However as I get closer to the Lord and meditate on His promises the doubts, fears and insecurities are less. God is so good and gives me what i need each day as I commit the day to Him. As the Word says He will not give us more than we can bear. What a wonderful God we have. I thank Him for all the wonderful women He’s put in my life to help me to see the bigger picture.

    Blessings,
    Diana

  46. I can say that I was shrouded in a mist of depression and AM thoughts today….but what helped me out, was 1) your Doubt Diet devotion for today, and the 2) being able to respond to some posts here…. Words came, not from me….and I was able to exhale the AM thoughts to really see how God can move through me….I needed that reassurance….. I will breath in the FM truths and exhale the AM lies….. thank you!

  47. Renee, I am praying for you and your sweet little girl, Aster…I felt led to send you the essay below by Emily Perl Kingsley…I serve in a ministry for children with special needs, and I was adopted by loving Christian parents…praying this is a blessing to you…

    WELCOME TO HOLLAND by Emily Perl Kingsley
    “I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability—to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It’s like this… When you’re going to have a baby, it’s like planning a fabulous vacation trip—to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It’s all very exciting. After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, “Welcome to Holland.”

    “Holland?!?” you say. “What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I’m supposed to be in Italy. All my life I’ve dreamed of going to Italy.” But there’s been a change in the flight plan. They’ve landed in Holland and there you must stay. The important thing is they haven’t taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It’s just a different place. So you must go out and buy new guidebooks. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met. It’s just a different place. It’s slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you’ve been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around … and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills … and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts. But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy … and they’re all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say, “Yes, that’s where I was supposed to go. That’s what I had planned.” And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away … because the loss of that dream is a very, very significant loss. But … if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn’t get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things … about Holland.”

    [Note: Author Emily Perl Kingsley wrote “Welcome to Holland” in 1987. She has been a writer for Sesame Street since its earliest years. When her son, Jason, was born with Down syndrome in 1974, Emily and her husband Charles became activists, educating the public and developing resources to help Jason and other kids with special needs fulfill their potential. When asked why she thinks “Welcome to Holland” has had such resonance for so many people, she replied: “It’s about a lost dream, any lost dream. Any change from the original plan. It says that it’s okay to continue to feel the pain of the loss; that it’s legitimate pain. It says that you’re entitled to be disappointed, which then allows you to go on and enjoy what you did get.”]

  48. I need heaping doses of FM thoughts. I’m discovering how hard it is and how long it takes to really change my way of thinking about myself and about God. I know He loves me and that He is for me, but I’m afraid my thoughts tell me that I’m not good enough or that because I have doubt I don’t have enough faith. Please pray for me on these points. I keep telling myself I’m going to make it and that it’s a process and journey, but I confess it doesn’t happen fast enough for me.

  49. Renee’,

    It’s amazing how the enemy attacks us where it matters the most. Your dear darling Aster is one of God’s masterpieces, he doesn’t make mistakes, or defects. I am reminded that there is a season for everything and in this season of fear, hurt, and doubt, God is using you to bless others. I’ve learned, God expects us to mean it when we say “I know how you feel!” This scary time as a mom will be used by God for you to bless others and oh my what a powerful testimony there will be when Aster’s beautiful voice, as God designed it, comes forth. I can’t wait to hear how God is going to show himself mightily in this situation. Praying God’s peace, assurance, and blessings for you.

  50. I LOST MY MOTHER IN 2005 AND I HAVE FELT A EMPTY FEELING EVERY SINCE.I HAVE TRIED TO “FAKE” HAPPINESS BUT IT FADES AWAY. I HAVE BEEN MARRIED FOR 11 YEARS AND I HAVE A GREAT HUSBAND AND A BEAUTIFUL 5 YR OLD DAUGHTER AND I LOVE THEM DEARLY AND I KNOW THAT MY MOTHER WOULD NEVER WANT ME TO FEEL THIS WAY BECAUSE SHE WAS A HAPPY LOVABLE PERSON WHO ENJOYED LIFE AND THE PEOPLE IN IT BUT IT WAS JUST SO HARD,I WAS READING A DEVOTIONAL ON 07/05/11 ABOUT LETTING GO OF THE PAST AND I FELT THAT THIS WAS MEANT FOR ME AND I DID FEEL LIKE THAT DARK WORLD I WAS LIVING IN WAS GON E AND I BEGIN TO FEEL HAPPY AGAIN BUT I STILL FIND MYSELF FIGHTING MY ANGER FROM TIME TO TIME.BUT I THANK THE LORD THAT I FINALLY ALLOWED HIM TO BRING ME THRU MY LONG DARK JOURNEY BEFORE I ITWAS TOO LATE.

  51. Wow, day two of the doubt diet was just what i needed today. I feel like I’m failing miserably at being a mom and wife. I recently took on a second job and i don’t know if I’ve done the right thing. We are struggling financially which is why i took on another job but just don’t know. My husband and I are not really communicating anymore. Its a nice reminder that God is in control. I don’t understand all thats happening in my life but I pray that thru this devotional God will reveal His plans for me and that I would overcome these doubts and insecurties.

  52. Thank you for the reminders Renee. Often I wonder if I should believe in myself — I think that the doubts have a foundation. But I need to be reminded that that is not where God wants me to be. And to believe in His power and love to overcome. It’s depressing because the battle is so constant with how I view myself and the fears over making any decision, afraid it will be the wrong one and afraid of the consequences I will have to suffer. I’m just starting to come out of the darkest period of my life — struggles with anxiety, fear, depression. God showed me my foundation wasn’t right, now I am trying to build a new foundation upon His Word, but it’s so hard.
    Would you be able to, once these two weeks are completed, to maybe do a shorter version of this two or three times a week? Just a few sentences to encourage us, along with a verse?
    I have been amazed that so many women are struggling with issues like me. It has encouraged me to know I’m not alone, but sad too that so many Christian women are being so attacked. Why are we missing the joy and peace that God and Jesus promised? I don’t know, but I am praying for you in leading us and for each of us women who need God’s freedom. Thank you!

  53. Melissa Sarlo says:

    Over the last four years of my life I have been fighting to save my marriage. Unfortunately, I lost this fight last year. My life has never been the same. I never thought my life’s dream of being a wife and mother would turn out this way. I am still blessed to have my three children, they are my joy. Todays devotion reminded me that I need to continue proceesing my pain and refill myself with the Word. That I am not alone and to have confidence knowing that God will bring healing and nring me hope!

  54. I love your AM/FM descriptors. They are an accurate and easy way to remember that God is always for me. I’m enjoying this and I’m praying for you and Aster. Please be in prayer for my son who has been sick with a cold and now an ear infection all caused by allergies. He can’t miss work as he is in training. Please pray for healing. Thank you sweet sisters.

  55. Lorie Lancaster says:

    I am so encouraged by these threads of all the different women & our struggle with the AM & FM thoughts I had a revelation last yr. about the verse in 2 Cor. 10 verse 6 in the message translation We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity. WOWSA what a revelation ~ If our thoughts will NOT fit into the frame of the cross (the structure of life shaped by Christs sacrifice) into The Plan of freedom Christ died to Give us WE SMASH IT , with the WORD OF GOD we take scripture & the enemy of of Hearts will HAVE TO FLEE!
    This is such a wonderful way to share from day to Day ~ I dont yet have the book but will definately log in here to continue this devotion! Thanks for providing them online!

  56. Helen Armstrong says:

    Renee, I will be praying for Aster, I know God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. If He did it for the people while on earth, He will do it for us because Jesus told us to ask the Father for anything in His Name.
    I have also been praying for a little girl in my children’s church that has no medical reason, but cannot speak at all. Mark 7:32 Some people brought to him a man who was deaf and who also had a speech defect. They begged Jesus to lay his hand on him. 33Jesus took him away from the crowd to be alone with him. He put his fingers into the man’s ears, and after spitting, he touched the man’s tongue. 34Then he looked up to heaven, sighed, and said to the man, “Ephphatha!” which means, “Be opened!” 35At once the man could hear and talk normally. 36Jesus ordered the people not to tell anyone. But the more he ordered them, the more they spread the news. 37Jesus completely amazed the people. They said, “He has done everything well. He makes the deaf hear and the mute talk.”
    Father we are claiming deliverance for Aster and Haylee. We know that if you healed one you will do it for the other. I ask in Jesus Name that Aster and Haylee be healed and able to communicate just like everyone else. We speak to their vocal cords to come alive, vibrate normally in Name of Jesus. We thank you today for a miracle and we are Trusting You. We thank you in advance for the answer and know that you will answer right on time. We Praise you for all that you have already done and what you are going to do. In Jesus Name Amen

  57. I’ve had to forgive a person that abused me as a child, the bully threw rocks at me, shoved me in the dirt, knocked me off the slide, swing, or what ever. Threw water soaked snowballs at my face, and all thru Jr, High and High School, he’d trip me, shove me into the lockers. I always knew who did it, but could never prove it to the teachers, and the abuse finally ended when he graduated from high school. Now as a 60 yrs. old grandmother, a boy bullied my grandaughter and I told them my story, never had I told anyone before, and it made me cry. I guess I had all these years shoved that in the back back parts of my mind. And now I found he lives about 80 miles from me. Ironic that I remember after all these years and have forgiven him, because I know that the Lord loves me, and that he cannot hurt me again. Fear of another person is so very real and hard to over come. I still shake when I think about that or if something reminds me fo the abuse. Praise the Lord that I have been saved and have a Father in heaven who loves me. My own family is great and I love them all dearly and I have a wonderful relationship with my parents. Thank you for writing this.

  58. Renee thank you, I’m gonna do just that start a journal to keep track of my thoughts. Then maybe I’ll get some sleep at night. I don’t know the last time I actually slept peacefully. My thoughts are constantly centered on everything that’s happened to me, everything I’ve gone through these past five years, everything I need to catch up on, and everything I have to do right now. I’m doing a lot of soul searching, attending Sunday school, bible studies, talking to God, praying, devotions, etc etc etc. And a lot of its’ unfocused but it’s working somewhat. Renee, what stood out mostly is (and I don’t wanna go back to what you wrote because I spend a lot of time doing that, double checking) but what stood out was-intentionally tuning my thoughts on what God thoughts are for me. I have so much to be grateful for yet shamefully my thoughts are more driven towards all that I don’t have, all that I’ve lost, and my husband whom I blame for most it. I tried to support him in the beginning of his struggles. I even blamed myself for things falling apart in the first place. At last my thoughts swing back to blaming him for what I believe is intentional damage to my emotional and mental state to prevent me from leaving him totally alone. I feel certain, through all my studies and daily devotion that the Lord wants to teach me something and has not permitted me to go forward until such time when I can leave it up to Him for deliverance out of these tough times. My AM thoughts have had such a major impact on my life and my children as well. It’s time that I start healing from the pain and disappointment I’ve had to go through. Thank God for women like you Renee who give of your time to help someone like me.

    Blessings to all!
    Diane

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