About the Author

Arianne is a mom of three boys and a baby girl. She lives in Phoenix, AZ, and sifts through the Legos and fluffy cloth diapers hoping to one day catch up on sleep. Her heart is healing and thriving from living life as a mom of kids with autism and...

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  1. Arianne,
    I have written about fear, but yet I do believe that fear still exists in that way down deep place. I fear “fear” itself (if that makes sense). I’m afraid of being fearful and so I quickly change the subject when it comes to dealing with my fear. I know that God is doing a work in me, but you’re right it isn’t easy, but so worth it. I know that God wants to break the shackles of my fear and have me dance in joyous freedom. I am a work in progress and am learning to live without fear.
    Thank you for a very honest and vulnerable post!
    May God bless you,
    Bev

  2. I think that people who know me, including some who know me best, would describe me as strong and fearless; I am just the opposite. I am also a stuffer-downer. I fear being physically and emotionally hurt again, I fear “failing” at my second marriage, I fear becoming my old self again, the liar, the cheater, the addict, the lost and wandering. I fear not being good enough…
    I pray that this “confession” is the beginning of being released from this fear! I say all the time that I am redeemed, but I certainly haven’t taken that on as my true name, I am still calling myself fearful & unworthy. I pray for the chains of fear to finally be broken and for that old self to be “ripped” out of me and cast as far as the east is from the west! Never to be seen or heard from again!

  3. This spoke to me deeply. I desire to let God unstuff my fears and accept His peace and trust Him in all areas. Career, marriage, friendships, family, etc. thank you so much.

  4. All I can say is “oh, wow!”. Your message is kind of bouncing around my insides, gently nudging things around, saying “listen to her” and “let Him in”. Thank you!

  5. This post is so timely! Was just speaking to a friend about this very thing yesterday. You see, I was in a car accident 2.5 yrs ago and suffered a brain injury and am really struggling with daily life as a wife and mother of two young kids. Every time I begin to feel sad for the losses that are a result of the accident, I feel guilty because it could have been worse (I can walk, talk, feed myself, kiss my kids each day, etc) but it was my friend who reminded me that I need to grieve what’s lost and confront the fears of what’s to come before I can truly be free. That although it could have been worse, what I’ve lost is still important and I don’t have to feel guilty for that. Thanks for reminding me that burying it, so others don’t worry, only hurts me.

  6. THANK YOU! I really relate to every word you wrote! I think many of us carry buried fear that keeps us from moving forward in true peace and joy! I pray God leads and guides us on the path to freedom from the fear! It can be a scary thing to hand it over and walk in faith but, I know it is the only way to let go! TRUST IN HIM!

  7. Wow! I felt like I was reading my own story!!…I am sitting here in amazement. (Thank you Lord!) Fear…no doubt-fear is the undertow that is ruling my unrest. Thank you for this.
    God bless you!!!

  8. Thank you. Lots to ponder. God recently made me aware of the impenetrable wall I have built up around my heart…constructed over 20 years in an abusive marriage (now over). Necessary then to survive. Terrifying to think about deconstructing now. It’s so much “easier” not to feel. Whew.

    • My wall went up to protect myself in my own abusive marriage. You’re right, it’s so much easier not to feel. Yet, I DO feel! And I’m craving the healing. But where to start? What is the first step?

  9. When it comes to fear itself, I can totally relate. But I don’t have to search very hard to find it in me. It dwells in the shallows as well as depths of my heart and life. All the functions of my daily existence have been purposely – though somewhat subconsciously – constructed to keep me safe from all the things I fear….the big ones being failure and rejection. And sadly of course, as a result I remain deprived of the true “fullness of life” that Jesus himself came to give us. I soooo badly want this fear out of me and off of me, for good!!!

  10. Good stuff. I am similar, and finding layers to get through. My husband has been unemployed for over 6 years, and honestly, the whole time until recently I have been nearly consumed with fear. Like you, I managed to present myself as being okay, but deep down there were constantly wolves at the door. It is now looking like a job is coming, but I am grateful to the Lord for His patience, faithfulness, grace and love. I finally realized my security is 100% in Him, not money, job, family, friends, etc. It has taken a long time, and much pain, self-inflicted, to get to this place. He does not need my help beyond what i’m responsible for. Such peace & rest in that. I am so thankful for a Savior who will walk through the valleys with you. Thanks for this. โ™ฅ

    • I so appreciate what you shared here, Leslie. We have had years of unemployment or under-employment too, and have had to come to the same place you describe. The wolves are not my problem, they are for God to deal with. But fear creeps into all areas and is so, so insidious that we sometimes look back and realize we’ve been in fear for a long time. Grateful for freedom, for the Lord who heals and restores and lets me simply fall into him. xoxo

  11. Thank you for sharing this post. I sit here with tears running down my cheeks because God spoke to me through your words. Finally, He has caused the dam to break that I have been patching with concrete, sand, pebbles– anything really– so I wouldn’t face the fact that I am stuffing down feelings, avoiding the fear. I’m not even completely sure what I fear, but I do know how God calls us to him to just come and be healed in His arms. He will reveal what that fear is in the safety of His presence.

    My heart so needed this this morning. Thank you and God bless you.

  12. Thank you for the encouragement that when we allow God in to heal those places of fear, He does and that it is good! I have dealt with fear and anxiety for the past few years following some health issues. For me, it is a lack of trust in God’s plan being good and in His love. And a fear of what others may be thinking of me. As I have been focusing hard my thoughts and heart on God’s love, faithfulness, joy and peace during the anxiety attacks, it has helped. I know it will take time, but I appreciate your words that “a new story is forming…and, oh girl, it’s a good one.”

  13. FEAR OF THE FEARS….. What if instead of whatever.(God desires in His will)… A tender heart, trusting like a little child… Filled with fears and anxieties from mother and grandmother; and then years of doing it my way filling all of those fears and empty places with physical pleasures to dull the pain. Then betrayal by my spouse when i was working to keep his lifestyle instead of being home with my babies. Yet God in His goodness permited forgiveness and reconciliation. Now at a “golden age” when things should be relaxed and somewhat enjoyable, job loss for him, illness(possibly severe) and then a series of severe infections followed by major surgery and a flair up of auto immune disease for me…… Where are you God? I know your promises, I have been reading and learning and teaching them for decades…….BUT THE CHALLENGES TO LIVE THEM OUT LOUD HAVE NEVER BEEN SO PREVALENT as Now…..
    Your words challenge me to purposely hunt down those fears … The ones from previous days and years and the one that can so easily fill me now. Oh to clean the slate, the harmful words and deeds and allow Him to write every word of Truth so deep within my heart that there is no room for anything else. Blessings!

    • Holding you close in prayer, Barbra, as I read your words and understand them so deeply. A new story can be written, one of healing and newness and peace and fulfillment. Blessings. xoxo

    • Barbra,

      Prayers for complete healing. May God come to you and heal your body of these illnesses and give your hubby a good job. I pray that you will feel His tender touch and be surrounded by His loving arms.

      Father,

      Please help Barbra and her husband as they face unemployment and illnesses. Give her husband a job that He can handle and surround her with your healing touch. Take away their fears of the future and give them peace.

      AMEN!

  14. I’m not an emotional person really. I try my best to be level headed and happy most of the time and can take most things with a pinch of salt. I try my best not to lose my cool or my head in most matters. But I cry easily. The tears just roll down like a waterfall that does not seem to stop. I cry over everything.
    Pent up feeling. I try my best not to react to hurts that others inflict on me. A punch that means to hurt badly. I stay calm and cool and cry about it later.
    The LORD is teaching me not not to take them any longer and to give up people and things that mean to bully. Cos, I do not react unfavourably.
    Do I feel?
    Yes.
    Do I let the emotions run amok?
    Most definitely not.
    We are all not perfect, least of all me. My dependency is to place all my pain and hurts and pray my HOLY Saviour would heal me of it all.
    I’m not an emotional person. Really.
    Are they pent up emotions. Probably. Should I deal with them? Probably. I just cuddle up to my husband and cry it all out. ๐Ÿ™‚ He is most understanding.

  15. What a truth to know many women struggle with such as I do. I have been married over 50 years,
    and always let my feelings remain under wraps! Now..I am being most verbal and letting all the
    pain of so many years be spoken. Needless to say, this has shocked my husband and he believes
    I am so wrong. I am inclined to walk away from this struggle, but financially it is not an option. I believe the Lord can make my world right side up..Fear, yes, I have much fear. I want free of the
    fear and live free to be all the Lord wants me to be, not what I thought I should be for the person
    I have lived with. I have been so wrong!

    • Laura,

      Praying for peace, contentment and direction from God. May you hear His wisdom and get answers to your prayers.

      Father God,

      Please give Laura some direction and help her to feel loved and respected. Surround her with your wings of peace, contentment and love.

      AMEN!

  16. I’ve been praying for a college student that was recently assaulted. She doesn’t want to “think about what happened,” but she bravely made it through a hearing against her accused. Obviously, she doesn’t want to think about it any more, but going through this process, (digging it up) can help assure it won’t happen to her or other girls on campus again. Working through her fears means she can come out on the other side victorious, no longer a victim and see justice served. Thank you for your post. It was so very timely!

  17. Thank You what a beautiful affirmation for me. This summer our daughter was married and I was perfectly fine until the last month before. Then it started with a little ripple across the pond then came the wind and finally the thunder. My heart was laid bare and it caught me off balance all this fear projected on to my daughter. The days leading up to her wedding were very difficult as I wrestled with my emotions. But God in his infinete wisdom knew it was time to release all this and so he chose to use this moment in my life for me to confront what lyed hidden for so long. I knew I had some fears but I didn’t recognized what they were connected to. And yes in thanksgiving I can say the Lord wanted to heal me in these areas. I fall on my knees in adoration and love to the one who himself is the source of love for the grace he has given. Blessings to you for sharing your encounter.

  18. Awesome topic! And I know exactly what you are talking about. I may be a ‘mature wise (?) woman’ of 57 on the outside… but deep down I am fear filled child that just does not understand. ๐Ÿ™ I have some work to do!
    Thank you!
    Love,
    Patty

  19. Your post brings me to prayer:
    Father, help us fearful women. Bring to each in Your way … the “lesser light” that rules that day … haloed there Your love and leading … divided from our darkened bleeding … keep us turned to watch You working … banish fear from where it’s lurking … and best the evil One at his game … ’cause Love, sweet love is our to claim … now and ever-after … In Jesus name, Amen

  20. So proud of you, friend. I’ve been processing a lot of things the past few months and realizing for as angsty as I can be, I’ve let denial take up a larger share of things than it should. This piece resonated so much and in surprising ways. I’m rolling up my sleeves and getting ready to dig in.

    • It’s almost funny how such angsty people can still be in denial, isn’t it? It’s so perplexing to me, surprising. But I think the angst is the product of the fear, because if I were *not* shoving emotions down, I would be processing them and be at peace. Not angsty. Such a good revelation. xoxo

  21. I am honestly envious of people who can cry. This may sound odd but I simply can’t. I have the “emotion” but rarely do tears fall. I have my suspicions of where this began, and though I’ve prayed for tears they still are elusive. I think I have a pretty close relationship with Christ though that hasn’t always been true. I don’t know if that means I have to go deeper for the tears to fall or if this is just the way I am wired.
    “If Iโ€™m still afraid deep inside me, Iโ€™m not letting God get at me deep inside my heart.”—If this is what’s going on, I indeed want to dig deeper. thanks for getting so many of thinking!!

  22. Your story spoke to my heart. Im afraid if I let go all at once I’d fall apart. Layer by layer I do, though, which is a good thing. Its a long journey and I’m so glad the Lord is with me all the way! He is the only thing that keeps me together. Thanks for sharing.

  23. This is an excellent post and as others have said, “very timely”…you see, I’ve recently gotten down right mad at the enemy and his “wiley ways”…for I am trying to wholly and completely trust God in all things right now. It has been a long time coming, but everytime I try to surrendar it all (including any fear I have), the devil rears his ugly head and says, “oh yeah, you think you are gonna trust God during this tough time…well, how about if I throw this at you?”…this morning, for example; it was our air conditioning. Rather than call the repairman and spend $$ we don’t have, we are praying and trusting God will make a way. The windows are open, fans blowing and the devil has a black eye!

  24. One of the best posts I’ve read lately. As Christians we think we have it all handled, we’ve been forgiven or we’ve done the forgiving. And then something, an event, what someone says, watching a movie, brings up emotions we thought we gone and way past us. We need to figure it out, because if we don’t, then it creeps back into our lives, most often, without us being aware of what is going on. Thanks for the encouragement.

  25. I have so many struggles and lose it emotionally on a regular basis. I have a son with emotional and behavior problems, a husband who does not take the time to educate himself about the best way to handle our son. He won’t listen to me and my life feels totally out of control. I used to have it together but wonder if I was doing what you used to do. I am a Christian but feel like a total failure in every area of my life. Some role model for others!

    • Oh Pam, I so get this. I have special needs children, and even with a supportive spouse I have felt the way you describe. You don’t have to have it all together to be a Christian, you don’t have to be anything but you, right where you are. Jesus sees you, right there, hot mess and all, and wants you to give those stresses and worries and burdens all to him. Praying for you today, sister. xo

  26. “So I let him go there, to those tender heart places that were so wounded I let them be covered up and forgotten in hopes the pain would hurt less. He is knitting those wounds together now, a newness that is holy and beautiful, because the fear was ripped out and a new story is forming and, oh girl, itโ€™s a good one.”

    I’m pretty sure I could’ve written this! I have always been an emotions-on-my-sleeve kinda girl. I was the biggest crybaby as a kid. But something shifted as I’ve gotten older. I’ve started to guard my feelings, hide my emotions from everyone, because I’m afraid of how people will see me if they see that “side” of me, and not the sweet happy side I’m happy to put on display. As a depression sufferer for many years, hiding my true emotions has been the easiest way to get out of being open about my past. I’m the one who never talks about her struggles because I don’t want people to think differently of me, I block off my feelings from friends with a simple “I’m fine”, or “i’m doing okay” when I’m spiraling downward. I put up walls around my heart and have refused to let anyone in for too long, even those that truly want to help me work through it.

    A good dose of therapy and a job that is teaching me to be vulnerable and open about my life is helping me start to let people into my heart, after keeping it closed off for many years. I’ve been so afraid of people hurting me, but in keeping myself closed off I’ve only hurt myself… for way, way too long. It’s a learning process, but I’m starting to let my guard down and tell myself it’s OK to let people in… and that I’m worth that. Thank you for your words today, I needed them! ๐Ÿ™‚

  27. oh babe, I can sooooooo relate! we sound like twins~ in personality! God is so good though, to break (shatter!) me & let all that gunk out..now in the healing… ๐Ÿ™‚ May the Heavenly Father bless you!

  28. Oh, my sweet sister in Christ….I could have written this…..not as well as you, but it’s as though you wrote it about what’s in my heart. I, too, am a fearful person….and keep my deepest hurts and emotions buried. For me, they’re buried under an overweight woman who has allowed the feelings I have chosen not to deal with lead to turning to food for comfort. Until recently, I don’t think I fully realized this about myself….and I’m almost 59 years old. God is doing a work on me, too!!! Thanks so much for sharing!

  29. I LOVE this post! My fear, however, is not hidden.. it is something I deal with every single day, and something that God is working with me to overcome. I spent many many years in an abusive marriage, but ever since my earliest childhood memory I have been filled with and ruled by fear. (Growing up with emotionally and mentally abusive parents will do that to a person.) With God’s immense patience and love, I am slowly venturing out of that place, into the place of confidence He created me for. It’s not easy, and some days are far better than others, but I am making progress and know it is possible. Thank you for writing such a timely, encouraging post! Many blessings to you!
    ~Jen

    • I hope I can say one day that I have ventured from that place of fear, having survived an abusive marriage myself. At this point, I’m crying out for something, anything, that points me toward healing!

  30. Thank you for these beautiful words… the timing of it is perfect for me. I do the exact same thing… I share my emotions and pain (to a certain extent) and then wonder why I never really feel better and why I feel so alone. I don’t connect well to people and I have been struggling with this. I want to, but if what you said is true (and it sure feels that way) it’s because I’m protecting something and in so doing I’m not being honest with anyone including myself. Oh, to find and identify the hidden fears…. sigh. Funny how no matter how far you come in Christ, there always seems to be another layer.

  31. I love how God leads me!
    The past several weeks have been a tad difficult! My husband and I had to decide to end the life of our 15 year old cat, then this week my Uncle passed away and on the day if his funeral, awoke to find our 16 year old cat limping and in terrible pain. We talked, and after the funeral decided to end her life as well.
    I told my husband I couldn’t let any felling or tears out, for fear I wouldn’t be able to stop! I must continue to “push” them down.
    After reading this, I know I must face and experience, with God’s help.

  32. Arianne..wow. I am kind of frightened by this post. I have always accepted that I wear my heart on my sleeve. I am told that I do. I have also, almost word for word, described the box in my head that I put things in and slam the lid. I have been glad that I forgive and move on, proud of the fact. I have wondered why I can’t cry. I have prayed for tears, not knowing what is wrong with me.
    Is it that I am fear- full .??? Honestly, I don’t know how to open the box.

    • I don’t exactly know either, I just know certain things I can be obedient in, or honest with myself, or true to my heart. I’m taking it in the teensiest baby steps you’ve ever seen. Thinking of you, Joan. xoxo

  33. THANK YOU is not adequate- am in counselling right now and you have just described me to a T and I’m going to take this with me to the next session- God has used you powerfully through this post- as you can tell by the number of people with whom it resonated !!

    T H A N K Y O U AND GOD BLESS YOU.

  34. I could have written this post.. except that until you wrote it, I didn’t know that this was me too. I too feel like I’m a pretty emotionally expressive person, and I think I’ve dealt with all that “big” stuff pretty well too.

    Except, I guess I really haven’t. Because I have a well of hurt and fears and emotional junk that pours out every now and then like a volcano erupting over various big things.. and if I had truly worked through it all, and let God heal those places fully, we wouldn’t even be having this conversation.

    Lots to think about today.

  35. I have done this with feelings regarding the absence of contact or little contact with my grown sons. At the surface, I try to tell myself that their happiness is the most important thing and that it’s selfish to want anything from them,mainly communication on a regular basis. I have pushed the pain back for so long, it erupts inappropriately especially on the occasions I get to be with them. The pain is there, and it cuts deep. I am thankful I was able to stay home when my children were growing up and I believe I was a good Mom. But I do blame myself for going through a rough period of depression when they left for college (not caused by them leaving but an accumulation of things) so I was emotionally absent during that time. I remember sobbing so hard that I literally thought I’d die from the pain, it hurt so bad. So somewhere along the way, I put up defenses as I couldn’t handle that kind of hurt. I will pray that God brings that pain out and helps me deal with it.

  36. Hi Arianne,
    Thank you for writing this post. I have so many emotions that I shut off so I can face my life. But actually it still there, waiting for me to release them. As you said, it’s not easy.. and I hope eventhough the process is really hard, I can endure and come out as a winner.. God bless..

  37. I’m learning this same truth about myself and it’s been surprising. My surface level always-have-an-opinion-and-corresponding-deep-emotion has been busted up with life and the choice to get real or dive deep into denial.

    I’m choosing the real. Today it’s hard and the outcome of daily life uncertain. Your words have encouraged me. Thank you!

    “Those emotions that were always on my sleeve? They are actually the product, the effects, of whatโ€™s been shut off.”

  38. Omgosh. While I know, I asked myself throughout…did I write this? I was redirected in my soul a few times by God telling me to slow down as I read for I was meant to be reading it.

    Multiple foster homes, multiple absuses,multiple means of trying to escape said pain. Sex, college degrees, kids, self harm and the list goes on, Ad Infinitum.

    After years of therapy, a list of tried medications longer than this response and close to two years of recovery from alcohol I am at the point of my core. Fear is my core. I’m getting more than just moments where I’m able to breath…amazing.

    Today, I see the light at the end of the tunnel and it certainly is not a train. Only due to those such as yourself who went through this (ALL of the ugliness of it) before I did.

    Thank you for putting so eloquently one of my biggest fears (Go figure), that my fears are a result of not doing something right by God. Truly…thank you.

  39. This was timely as well as hard to deal with. I know what I think about things, but I know that I put my emotions on the back burner and use all my energy to take care of my family. We’ve got 6 kids, my husband is underemployed….and its all just HARD. I wear the face of “confidence” outside….but am struggling to keep my head above water inside. I’ve got a lot of fears, and stuff them way below the surface. I don’t like this. I don’t want to live “this life”. However, HOW do I deal with my emotions, how do I know what to do with them other than stuff them below the surface. I see that we all need to deal with them, but understanding where to start this journey is where I am at. How?
    Thank you for your message.

  40. This is the continual and repeated message that God is sending me…. Thank you for being His voice! I have been avoiding truly retiring. I pray that God alone will show me His plan and help me not to fear.
    Don’t get me wrong… It is a privilege to be done with employment, but there is the fear of loneliness and living on less and getting my value from God alone.
    I just started going to a Bible study on Staci Eldriges new book… becoming Yourself. We are never too late to become who we are meant to be.
    God bless, and thank you again!

  41. “Perfect love casts out all fear.” Getting His “perfect love” in place of “fear.” Sounds like a win-win. But why do we make it so hard? Is the exposure of, God seeing our fear so difficult? He knows it anyway. He is up to the challenge of our fear. He delights in us! He wins, when we give Him our problems. It is us actively trusting Him. …and He loves it. He Loves us! He Loves You,…He Loves Me!

    <3

  42. Arianne,

    I am a very emotional person. My emotions are right there on my sleeve for the world to see. My husband is different. Occasionally he will show emotion, but not much. He stuffs things down a lot. Especially fear of losing his job. These past few months he has seen a bunch of his co-workers lose their jobs after years of working for the company. He finally let it out and told me about his fears.

    I find that on some occasions I can stuff emotions down, but when they come out it is “wham” and crap hits the ceiling. I try not to let that happen. My focus usually is to pray about everything and let God do His work!

    God Bless!

  43. Thanks for your honesty. I, too, struggle with fear. It’s at the root of my pounding heart during prayer meetings and when I get up to speak at a women’s event. The fear of rejection and inadequacy is a biggie. So is the fear for my loved ones’ well-being, especially because I want them to be safe and prosper but real life doesn’t always work that way.

    Bottom line–my understanding of who God is plays a huge role in whether or not I allow that fear to control me. Here’s a thought that helps me: If He loved me enough to die for me, how can I not trust Him with every detail of my life? Understanding who He is seems pivotable in this battle.

    For groups wanting to delve deeper into this topic, I wrote a book called “Moving from Fear to Freedom: A Woman’s Guide to Peace in Every Situation” and developed a DVD-based Bible study to accompany it (in partnership with Stonecroft Ministries). It’s making a difference, and for that, I thank the Lord.

  44. I wear emotions on my sleeve, and have always thought them a byproduct of being an extrovert, but, after reading this, I’m wondering if I mislabeled myself (not that I should label anyway).

    Thanks for this. Fear is my biggest enemy and is constantly at work within me, especially now (full-time work and graduate school in evenings). It affects EVERYTHING I do! God works with me, though, if I take those moments to ask him to help use that fear for positive motivation instead of guilt or shame.

  45. thank God for sending this message for me! I needed it and pray that I will have the courage to allow God to work in me to heal the deep hurts that happened to me. And I am sending this to my son as well becaues he really needs it to. Pray for his courage to do this,allowing God to heal his wounds too.
    thank you for writting this for all of us. I can relate with so many of these ladies and their stories.
    blessings to you

  46. I needed to read this today, right at this moment- why? Because I was needing to face this fear, this stuffing down of all my emotions. I’m getting nervous just thinking about it- but it’s time. I’m ready for God and I to work through this.

  47. Wow…
    I have things from my childhood that I need to deal with before I can move on with my life. I have been pushing them down my whole life… I know a wonderful therapist who I can go to but I am so scared. Thank you for this post, it is a reminder to me that I need to confront these things so that I can move on.

  48. I just found this today when searching for another email. How this rings true to me. I have worked on fears in therapy for years, but since this summer, I have been getting to the deepest core of my fears, that God is passive and will not help me because I do not deserve it. What a hard thing to have based my life on. God is so gracious though. Though I have had these wrong and largely unconscious beliefs about Him, He is merciful enough to bring them to the surface at the right time and bring healing. As so many have said, not easy but absolutely worth it! I now ask God each day for the grace to trust the God who is my refuge, my strength, and my help! (Ps 46:1)