Today is our last conversation in the series on rest. Today #livingfreetogether friend, Tina Savant Gibson, shares how she returned to a fearful scene to conquer fear.
That courageous move led her to rest. If you have faced overwhelming fear, may her story give you hope! ~ Suzie
Something was wrong. . .
Mama and I had just returned from a day filled with errands and detours. When we entered the house, the air had an unusual feeling of stillness.
I went upstairs to our bedroom. All the drawers in the armoire were missing. So was a single pillowcase. The one on my side of the bed.
I raced down the stairs, grabbed Mama and ran outside, frantically trying to dial 9-1-1. My family had been robbed. Jewelry and sentimental items weren’t the only things stolen that day. Fear robbed my rest and held it hostage.
Have you been there, friend?
Are you in a dark place where fear has taken away your ability to rest?
I became the poster child of weary and burdened. I tried to keep going. I prayed. I sang praise songs at the top of my lungs. I loved Jesus with all my heart, but the darkness of fear camped out within me. Especially at night. I fake-slept until my husband dozed off, then I would tip-toe to the couch downstairs. It gave me full view of the doors.
I’d made myself the unofficial watchdog for our safety.
Come on, robber dude, I dare you.
I begged God for rest, but my heart wasn’t fully in trust-mode. I wanted a quick fix, a magic prayer that would make everything normal again.
[bctt tweet=”The God of all grace, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast. #livingfreetogether #giveaway ” username=”suzanneeller”]
I felt as if I were placed in a wilderness of restlessness. I don’t like the wilderness, do you? That season of silence when we wait in desperation with heart cries of “Where are you, God? Don’t you love me anymore?”
Hang on, sister. Hope is on the way.
And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. 1 Peter 5:10 NIV
Hallelujah for restoration day!
I’ll never forget mine.
I intentionally went back into our bedroom . . . the scene of the crime. I stretched my body on the floor and fully surrendered to my Abba Father. I wept. I wailed. When darkness showed up that night, I stayed in the bed beside my sweet husband and rested.
I rested my tired ‘ole body, but even more, I rested my tattered ‘ole soul.
Is fear stealing your rest? Take my hand. I’d love to pray for us.
“Oh Father, we are so tired of being fearful. We lay our fears at the foot of the cross right now. Please give us your rest and help us trust as we keep our eyes on you. We love you.
In Jesus’ Name we pray, Amen.
Meet Tina Savant Gibson
Tina has always loved words. She’s a former marketer, but now enjoys writing life stories with all her heart! Tina loves encouraging another soul, taking pictures of the sky, and dancing in the living room with her husband, Frank, who inspires her more than he’ll ever know.
Connect with Tina on her blog: www.tinasavantgibson.com
This beautiful two-sided Rest Pendant was designed by Tina’s friend, Tiffany, of Holly Lane Christian Jewelry.
It has a dandelion on one side and “I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28” on the other.
It comes with a card that says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28.
Remember laying in the yard blowing dandelions before you knew they were weeds? May this piece be a constant reminder that in the busyness of life, we can find true rest in Jesus.”
Please check out this pendant on Holly’s site. This picture doesn’t do it justice!
We’ll choose one lucky winner to receive this pendant. Just comment below.
Q: Fear is a natural reaction to a frightening or unsettling event. Describe a time that God helped you calm or conquer fear.
Q: The Lord led Tina back to the place where her fear originated. How does our faith in a God who loves us helps us face old fears?
My sweet sister, Tina, love your words of ease and honesty and truth. That Satan has robbed me plenty of zzzz’s due to fear. The drip, drip of the “what if’s” tend to show up in the night…in the darkness. That is the way the liar works. At times it is still a battle but settling in and nestling into God, my peacemaker, gives me true rest and ease.
I love you, Tina, my buddy sent from God. So proud of you and how He is working in your life.
Michele, Lifting you up in prayer this morning for peace and rest and that when the “What ifs cross your mind you will continue the thought with….God will be there with me. “What if…………..God will be there with me.” Praying your day is blessed today and everyday!
Thank you, sweet Nancy. I appreciate your words and prayers. ❤️
Godd has helped me through fear during a past DV relationship, loss of my Mom in a car accident when I was a little girl. I am thankful for His Love and protection.
God has helped me through fear during a past DV relationship, loss of my Mom in a car accident when I was a little girl. I am thankful for His Love and protection.
Prayers for you, Jeri! I am so thankful that God’s love is so much greater than anything we could fathom or be capable of giving. i think sometimes that makes it hard for us to receive it, too. Wider than the skies, deeper than the oceans, always and forever. xoxoxo
Psalm 23 …I love to read it slow and let the words just penetrate my soul. Our “help” comes from our Maker.
Whenever I moved to a new place and also when I became the Cubbies Director at my church. That first day it started I was excited but very very nervous.
Thank you for serving with Awana’s! That program is so awesome, and it blesses so many children!
I’ve been dealing with this constant ongoing fear. All day and night. I’ve been trying to understand. It has been quite overwhelming and can make me physically sick. I am most of the time restless. It has robbed me from so much. It makes me sad to think about. When I do walk out I find myself embarrassed and humiliated . . I want to hide. A pastor told me once . . people will think what they think, but that isn’t your problem. Those words have been helpful to keep stepping out! I think fear of man keeps making me feeling stuck. I want to continue stepping out in faith though, because it’s like saying, God I trust You to be with me, even if it doesn’t feel like it. I think a lot of fear is coming from trying to be this certain rightness before I can go out. This post was encouraging! James 4:7 came to my mind.
Gracious Heavenly Father, I am joining Alexis in prayer this morning. Please guide her to the root of her fear and heal her in that area. Wrap your loving arms around her as she steps out, one day at a time, knowing that you accept her where she is and more importantly love her unconditionally. Fill her with the confidence that comes from only you. Shield her from anything that would trigger her fear. Bless her with your peace that surpasses all earthly understanding, guide her steps and words so that she will be a light in this dark world. I thank you, Lord, for Alexis and all the plans you have for her life. Thank you, Lord for all you are doing in her life. I pray Ephesians 6:10-19 over her and ask you to cloth her in the whole armor ‘of God every day. In Jesus name I pray, Amen
I had a decision to make. Either forever be in pain or take the necessary steps to have total knee replacement surgery. I was Type 2 Diabetic and obese (that five-letter-word no one likes on their medical chart). So I took a step of faith and met with a bariatric surgeon. I began the steps necessary to have a sleeve gastrectomy. There are medical tests and psychological evaluations to go through. I was cleared for surgery four months later. Eight months later and 100 pounds lighter I had total knee replacement surgery. And I am no longer diabetic! God was so good to me. He gave me comfort in my fear and I could hear Him saying, “You can do this”!
Janice-Praise God that you were able to walk through your fears and improve your health!! Thank you for sharing this-I know it will give hope to someone struggling in the same area-you are an inspiration!!
Good for you to step out in faith to get healthy—the way God planned for us all❣️
Thanks for this devotion. Fear is crippling. It can lead to stress and medical issues. Thanks for quoting Matthew 11:28 which tells us our” Our burdens are lifted at Calvary.”Also”our burdens being lifted at the cross” is illustrated in the other verse you quoted 1 Peter 5:10 All glory be given to our and Savior as He helps us conquer our fears!
I have had several fearful events and God has given the peace and strength to get through them all. I am now a single mom after getting out of a very unhealthy relationship. My Dad passed away and He has given me comfort and my kids do everything to keep his memory alive. I left a part time job after 17years for a full time time. Talk about leaving my comfort zone. My go to verse is always Philippians 4:13. I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength.
Describe a time that God helped you calm or conquer fear. – When I was first divorced, a good friend told me, “You can sit hear and cry your eyes out, or you can pull yourself up by your bootstraps and do what has to be done” (with two little boys) That day I decided I would not be beaten down, that God was speaking to me through her, and I would keep myself together for the sake of my two little boys and carry on. Thank you, Tina for your devotion today!
Thank you for sharing you story, and that encouragement. I’m currently in similar situation (my husband left me), and it helps to see others talk about overcoming.
We recently returned from a trip to South Africa, one that we’d planned for over a year. It was on my husband’s bucket list, where I on the other hand, had no desire to go! Fear kept me from enjoying the planning period, until I gave it to God. I asked God to calm my soul, and allow me PEACE to plan and take our trip. It was a well-deserved trip that my husband worked very hard to pay for!
God came to my rescue and totally gave me the peace I needed to go on my trip and fully enjoy it! It was a wonderful experience that I needed to do with my husband, and I am so thankful that I did!
God was there with me the entire time, and kept fear at bay!
When I was in my early 20’s and newly married, we lived in The Bronx-I had never lived in the city before. One day I came home from shopping and the lock on our apartment door had been tampered with and broken. I couldn’t get in. My husband got so angry because I had to call him to come home from work. The burglar didn’t even get into the house but he robbed me of my peace. I honestly don’t remember what calmed that fear perhaps it was moving out of the city-that somehow made me feel safer, I can still remember every time I went into that apartment I had to check every closet to make sure no one was lurking inside. Sounds silly now but the fear was so intense. Thank you Jesus that I have you to lean on, no matter what I face, one day at a time!
Greatly appreciated as I battle one nagging long time fear–and want victory in Jesus
Father, today we stand with Carrie and thank you for stepping into that fear. Turn it into ancipatoon of what you can do and who you are, and who she is because of your immense love. Amen.
Thank you for the post…. I understand fear for sure! I am so thankful for a God who allows me to run to him when I am scared. That is the best place to be. He is true to His word and He is Good! I could give so many examples but I would run out of space. He is just simply faithful.
Thank you for the post. I understand fear for sure! I am so thankful for a God who allows me to run to His arms and find safety and shelter. I could give many examples of how He has done that in my life but I would run out of room. He is simply good and faithful. I can honestly testify to that!
Fear resulted in lots of sleepless nights about to how to handle changes, and being forced into a situation I did not want to be apart of. Letting go of the unknown, and working on trusting God and believing His promises have helped the most. Reminding myself everyday that God cares, He listens, that He hasn’t forgotten me, and that He is working on things in ways I cannot see has helped. Every time that fear starts to take over I have to cry out to Him, and ask for His strength because mine is failing. I truly wish this difficult time in my life would end so I could have more insight into how God helped me over come Fear, anxiety, and all the pain, but in His time.
Chanda, I don’t know if you see it or not, but I see God walking so closely with you. I see growth in this unasked for hard place. Cheering you on!
First, thank you for having Tina Gibson post her article to your blog❣️ I’ve known Tina since she was a small child (so cute) & have been blessed to reconnect via FB. What a blessing❣️ Tina’s wise words have blessed my heart & soul more than I can say. Now, to fear–this is an almost constant struggle even though I’ve known Jesus for 73 YEARS—, have been involved in services of my church, but fear(s) still rear up. My main foundation comes from the FACT that GOD IS FAITHFUL AND NEVER CHANGES! “THERE IS NO SHADOW OF TURNING WITH THEE” (song) also I love Laminations 3:22-24. The entire chapter is wonderful!
I used to be terrified of dogs. All dogs. Big ones, small ones, cute ones, homely ones. It didn’t matter. A dog was a dog, and I was petrified of them all! When I was a little girl, I was bitten by my cousin’s Yorkie. For the next 25 years, I would freeze in fear whenever a dog came within 50 feet of me. I was “that person”: the one who forced people to shut their dog in th bathroom before I would Grace their home with my presence. I was 31 years old when I married my husband. He had a (at the time) 8 year old daughter. Hannah desperately wanted a dog, but I was vehemently against it. I reasoned that, because my husband was an over the road truck driver, and Hannah was with us only a handful of days in the month, that a majority of the time, I would be alone with and responsible for a dog. Thanks, but no thanks! For the next 8 months, Hannah begged and I remained adamant that there would NEVER be a dog in our home. Then, June came…. I was scrolling through Facebook, and came across a post from a man who needed to re-home a rescued 4 month old puppy. Something stirred in my heart. “Hannah’s birthday is 2 weeks away”, a still small voice whispered. I sent the man a message, requesting to meet the puppy. We set a time for the following day. My husband was on his way home for the weekend, and I called him. I filled him in on what had transpired. There was a long pause before he said “Okay, who are you, and what have you done with my wife?!” Later that evening, I explained to him that it finally dawned on me that it was unfair for me to deprive Hannah of something she desperately wanted because of my own fear. I told him that I was tired of being afraid, and that this was the catalyst I needed to get over it. The next afternoon, we met the man as agreed, and I fell instantly in love with Lucky, a Cocker spaniel/Golden Retriever mix. We brought him home with us that same day. Two weeks later, Hannah decreed that I was the best step mom ever. That was nearly 6 years ago, and Lucky has since been joined by Shelby who we rescued last June, and Belle, who we rescued just last night. The one who spent 25 years being terrified of dogs is now a furmama to 3 of them.
I love this! You have no idea how this encouraged me with a similar fear I have had pretty much all my life. Not dogs. Bees! I know. It’s so ridiculous! Ha! I can’t write all of the details … but the Lord has been speaking VOLUMES to me lately, that I need to get rid of this fear once and for all. It’s been baby steps . . . but I’ve made them and am so thankful. This post spoke straight to my heart – because this irrational fear of mine is not just affecting me anymore, but my kids. We have a pool for the first time … and our DREAM backyard. Of course, it’s a bee paradise too. LOL I refuse to allow the enemy to destroy this gift God’s handed our family – especially not because of a fear of a tiny little insect! Fears can certainly do a number on our rationality, can’t they? Praying every day that I learn to live FREE and not in fear!
Fear is always a bully and tries to lure his prey by making circumstances full of danger and impossible challenges. I became a victim of fear when my ex tried to strangle me. It took me over five years to find courage and strength from the Lord. I found I could trust Him for my safety. Although cautious of people, I experienced confidence in God’s protective care and love. I found the Word of God full of promises that I claimed. This practice kept me from dwelling on my horrific event. Slowly but surely, I found peace and security as I trusted God more each day. A lot of friends prayed me through difficult days as well. God is so good!
Brave. Courageous. Strong.
Thank u for giving us this opportunity to win.it will give a constant reminder of resting in God I love it
Dandelions remind me of a time in life when nothing was impossible, you just had to believe. The sight of them take me back to that time.
Oh boy! I am needing rest from 4 cray kids! We homeschool and it has gotten tough with my teen, who thinks she knows it all and doesn’t want anything to do with our family. I feel my blood boil many times. I will be praying for more peace to settle in my heart! TY for this timely reminder.
I am in serious need of laying down my fears! Just when I believe I have successfully given them to the Lord, I snatch them back.
Fear of things not going to turn out, those things out of my control; miraculously now changed to peace and calm. I’m no longer worried about selling our home and moving; instead I’m feeling enthusiastic to do my part in what needs to be done, not worrying about what my spouse needs to do. I felt hopeless before. Now, although I don’t know quite how, I’m feeling hope, peace, joy,and new life! Thank you dear Lord. Dandelions,to me, are a symbol of serving God through his beloved son. I’d love to receive the pendant!
God helped me through a rough time in my life where I had no choice but to trust Him. Fear and anxiety were in prevalent but I trusted and He pulled me through. His love for me is overwhelming and abundant. Much more than I deserve! He knows me, all the good and all the bad. And He loves me anyway!
Today was a day I was regretting. I had been waiting for medical results and possibly being fired at work. But I determined myself to not worry. To ask for prayer from others to pray with me for what God’s will for me was. I was determined NOT to be fearful, but to trust that He would provide.
Losing my father 6 mos. ago, bringing my frail mother, with dementia/altzheimers to live with me, then seeing 2 of my fur babies expire (only part of the list) has left me feeling alone, uncertain, and insecure, if I’m honest. But, I’m praying for guidance, direction, strength and energy that I know He will provide. I’m standing on his promises…
Irish, I am praying that you grasp how wide, how high, how deep is the love of Jesus for you. You are an amazing daughter and human being, and I love that I get to call you family.
Fear robs me of many things. I worry constantly over my young adult children, what ifs. I long to break free.
I pray that God send his comforting presence over you, so you may live fully in the promises God sends us through his son Jesus Christ. May his peace be with you as your fear subsides.
Just went through an unexpected surgery-Thank you for the reminder to give my cares to Thur Lord and rest in him.
Ruth – Sending prayers for your recovery and rest! Bless you! xoxoxo
I absolutely loved this…You are so right! Fear is a thief and a liar. While I “know” this, I still default to that panic that steal my joy. I’m so thankful for the God we have and how He loves us…even when we are silly and fearful 🙂
Donna Marie my prayer for you is that God touch your heart each morning so you may live fearless instead of fearful.
Thank you Debbie! I pray the same for you!
My problem was I could not be still and let God give me his blessings. Even today I need reminders and your beautiful necklace makes me think of his blessings just waiting for me if only I would be still.
I have been struggling with fear and anxiety for quite a while now, just with about everything there is to be afraid of especially of those close to me dying suddenly. Lately I have been in the word a lot more and God has been giving me much more peace than I have felt in a while and it is indeed restful. I hope that my fear continues to dissipate and that the Lord helps to remind me that He is indeed in control of everything that happens and also remind me of the end picture!
Heavenly Father, our sister Laura needs rest. The tiredness of fear fills her with anxiety and worry. We pray Laura moves closer to you with her thoughts, prayers, and reading your word and knows you are always with her. We thank you for Laura and her desire to rest in you. Amen.
This resonates with me so much. Since my husband’s brain cancer diagnosis, every time my phone lights up with an unexpected call, I feel myself bracing against what may be more tragic news. I fear for my kids’ safety – especially the ones away from home. Maybe that’s my version of sleeping on the couch in view of the door- I may not stop the “robber” but at least I’ll be braced for it…or not. I know how powerless I really am, and I want to trust my Abba Father more in this season so I can exhale that breath I keep holding and REST.
Father, we pray for Rachel and her family in this time of battling fear due to cancer and other family situations that rob peace in their lives. May your presence be known so they know they are not alone. Amen
“When you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.” Proverbs 3:24
Dandelion is such a great symbol of what most people consider worthless, but our Lord is so Good And Gracious In His creation of the Dandelion he tucked away wishes in the transformation from flower to seed so delicate and transported by the breeze.
Sorry I did not read the question Yes …. my teenage daughter left home and there was divorce proceedings during these past three years I have hardly seen my daughter and she has had little communication with me. It has broken my heart and I have had increased anxiety and although I pray to God for safety wisdom and security it was not until asking our God for something more that One morning he gave to me the visual of Moses in a basket and then it was the only thing I could hold onto visually To trust just as Mirium trusted in another way to keep her baby safe when there was no other way and the wonderful outcome incredible outcome of that trust!!!!
Sheila, I understand the pain of separation from your daughter. -I love the visual of Miriam giving her son to God and trusting he would take care of him for greater purposes. I will keep this visual tucked in my heart-thank you. I also cling to Matt 19:26 ” and Jesus said,’with man this is impossible but with God ALL things are possible.” And in Gen 50:20 when Joseph is speaking to his brothers, who feared him greatly when they realized he lived after being sold into slavery, and he told them not to fear because “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.” The evil one means only bad things through separation from loved ones BUT GOD he will bring good even through this!! Continue to trust him.
Thanks for sharing your life experiences with us and how yor love of God’s WORDS guide you.
Thank you for posting this…
I have a son who has had mental issues for a long time. I have had fear and anxiety because I just couldn’t give it all to God and trust in Him. Through counseling I have been able to totally give him to the Lord and trust that he will take care of my son. My fears are much better and my anxiety is gone. Thanks for sharing your fear.
Linda, Thank You for sharing that sometimes counseling is necessary to help us to see and trust God with our loved ones, praying that God will give you peace and comfort despite circumstances and he will watch over your son.
I would love to win this! … So much going on in our lives the last few years. Military deployments, kiddos leaving the nest, moving, wondering where God is and what He’s doing in our marriage, finances, with one particular child’s life and choices, etc.
Holly, Praying God reveals himself to you during these difficult times and brings you comfort and peace.
Holly — First, thank you for all your family is sacrificing for our country! I have been through deployment and I know it’s extremely difficult for everyone. Bless you! God is with you. Praying for your family and that God will give you clarity. Trust in His faithfulness and love! xoxoxo
I’m learning to trust God, as well, by not running ahead into my tomorrows and imagining the worst case scenarios but trusting He will meet me there and provide for what I need in the moment. I’m also praying for God’s wisdom that includes balance and boundaries; to stop being hard on myself and receive His grace!
What a beautiful necklace and brave story to share! This spring has held many storms. On a night when we fled to the basement for protection from a tornado, I felt naturally afraid. Yet I praised God for protecting my family in that storm, and prayed for those nearby who lost their homes.
Sarah, It is a wonderful testimony that despite your fear you were able to focus on praise and prayer during the storm!! Thank God, with you this morning, that he kept you safe during the storm.
I’ve had several situation that kept fear at the forefront of my mind for months, sometimes not letting me sleep at night and always thinking about it, and about safety.
On one occasion I came across in the Bible verse that says that perfect love knows no fear. So it became my personal challenge About how much I really trust God. And I told myself that if I really believe His Word and what the Bible says about God (being our shield, protector,etc) then I shall not allow fear rule over me and my mind. But I should truly trust God.
On another occasion when I was going through some unexplainable health issues, and it got to the point where I did not trust my own physical strength to go by myself outside of verse came to my mind – and I believe it was from God – that said do not be afraid, do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will go with you wherever you go. And I remember that I kept on reciting this verse over and over every time I went outside and felt weak physically, once again just telling myself that even if something was to happen to me, God would still be in control and he would care for me and find a way to provide help. That was the only way that gave me enough courage not to lock myself inside my apartment and try to live a normal life in the midst of that season.
Karolina, What a wonderful testimony that you were able to memorize and lean on God’s word to walk through your fears. Praying that God will continue to help you recall his word and promises to comfort you in times of fear and trouble. Thank you for sharing such encouraging experiences with us!
What a beautiful Mother’s day gift this pendant would be. Such a blessing.
What a beautiful gift. I can imagine it would be so difficult to rest in that darn room after being robbed. Fear would take over for me. I love that you were able to look at a particular day that you were restored.
Your words are so comforting and real. I love reading about your life and realizing, “hey, she’s amazing, AND has the same fears and worries we all do”. Thanks for being an inspiration!
Thank you for helping to be a light in this mess that I call life. It really means a lot knowing there are places that I can go to that help break things down.
During a threat on my husband’s life in pastorate, God brought peace and safety.