7-day Doubt Diet Day 2: Beat Up or Built Up?

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If you haven’t signed up, don’t put it off – YOU are worth it. You’ll need your own copy to read (And its free HERE) as I won’t copy each day’s entire devotion. We’ll go through the devotion each day together, sharing scripture, encouragement, doubts, fears, and insecurities that have taken up residence in our hearts. If this is your first time joining us, I want you to know I do not have it all together and I have faced doubts and insecurities my entire life.  We are in this together  it’s a “sharing” thing.

Day 2: Taken in part from Chapter 6

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)

Yep, happens to me all the time. I won’t even be awake good yet, before discouragement tries to snuggle up next to me and hold me down. Not physically, but emotionally and spiritually. Do you ever wake up like that? Lately I have been so overwhelmed. There is not enough of me to go around.  I’ll tell God – I can’t do all of this it’s too much. Having so many responsibilities leaves me feeling like I am barely treading water and I’m nose deep. One more drop of water and I’m going down.   In case you haven’t gotten your copy of the 7-day Doubt Diet, Renee describes waking up feeling much the same way.
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Then, Renee’s alarm went off to the song “God is in Control,” by Twila Paris. As she listened to the word of the song, truth began to take over.  Truth says things like there is no time for fear, instead it’s a time for faith and determination.  To hold on to God’s word hidden in her heart instead of the thoughts that wanted to overtake her mind.  Then, a timely reminder……. God was in control.
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God uses his word to speak truth into our soul because his light dispels darkness.  When his word is spoken fear has to leave, doubt has to go away, insecurity has to pack up it’s bags.  The only way they have access to our minds is if we open the door and let them in.  Of course we’d never do it intentionally, right?  If someone came knocking on our door and we knew they were coming to harm us what would we do?  Would we open the door, lay out the red carpet grab a diet coke and chill?  Of course not.  I’d grab my babies and high tail it as far away as I could in the opposite direction.
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But my mind, not so much.  The part that has always been so hard for to grasp is that it’s already mine.  He’s already given me peace, He’s already given me strength, He’s already given me a measure of faith, in fact He’s already given me everything I need to face today.  When I hear that I want to scream WHERE?  WHERE IS IT?  Then, I read the next sentence.  But it won’t happen just because it’s possible.
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Well I think we’ve pretty much determined we’ve all got issues.  So, what’s the verdict?  What do we do if it won’t happen just because it’s possible.  What do you do when doubt whispers in your ear.  It’s your turn to share, remember it’s a “sharing thing.” Do you ever wake up and feel discouragement taking over your thoughts?  What about doubts…….do you worry like me?
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I’m assuming most of you have not read A Confident Heart .  Renee has a testimony behind her message.  She’s been there and walked through many years of doubt, insecurity, worry and fears.  She understands and shares very personal stories from her life.  I just wanted to share with you because I want to learn from someone who has fought the battle and has come out victorious on the other side.
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Below is an excerpt from Day 2: of the 7-Day Doubt Diet..
We have to take action. Just as she had to tune her radio to encouraging music, we need to get intentional about tuning our thoughts to God’s thoughts toward us, every day..
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But it won’t happen just because it’s possible.

But it won’t happen just because it’s possible

But it won’t happen just because it’s possible..

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She referred to two different kinds of thoughts AM (Against Me) or FM (For Me).  I am starting to think that Renee snuck in my mind one day to hang out and listen.  I can guarantee you, that AM thoughts occur more frequently than FM.  I can be so hard on myself.  Thoughts don’t just swirl around in our mind aimlessly – thoughts create some kind of action.
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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.
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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. This week, let’s 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.  (Kasey here – I am going to do this.  Getting the words out of our heads onto a piece of paper takes the delusion out.  It also makes us purposely stop and think of God’s truth.
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If you haven’t signed up for your own copy of the FREE 7-day Doubt Diet you can here as I am not posting the entire devotion.  You know copyrights and all that.  It’s something that I know I will keep to refer back to when discouragement wants to move in.
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Personal Note from Kasey
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I ended yesterday’s devotion with a prayer request for my family.  If you missed it, you can read it here.
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So………..what happened? I had no idea when we started this devotion that God would be calling me back to a place all to familiar.   My husband is a pharmaceutical rep and his main drug just went generic.  We woke this morning anxiously awaiting the call from corporate to find out if his job will be eliminated.  The last time we waited on the same kind of phone call, it was a little over three years ago the day after my fathers funeral.  My heart screams with doubt – we’ve already been through this twice in the last 8 years, you have got to be kidding me.
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At the same time, I’ve heard God gently whisper in my ear – remember where I’ve brought you from.  I did not forsake you then and I won’t now.  He’s calling me to take HIS hand and trust His heart.  I hear you God, I really do……..but to be 100% honest I’d rather you just answer my prayer that he won’t lose his job.
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Fast forward a little while and the phone call has come and gone.  Guess what, it wasn’t the answer I had hoped for?  It’s not the answer I want.  I don’t have a choice, God has a plan and a purpose that is far beyond my ability to understand.  As soon as I heard Gary answer the phone I knew by the tone of his voice.  Thoughts began to flood my mind: fear, anxiety, worry, doubt, disappointment, did I already say fear?  Then, I started to pray and as I did God began to remind me of his faithfulness to my family.  No matter how bad it’s been, and trust me it has been B  A  D, he’s always taken care of us.  You know what?  God has given us peace.  A peace I can’t explain, even anticipation wondering what God is doing in our life.  He’s up to something.
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So, here I am again back at the place where this all started.  To the place where I started couponing in the first place.  I don’t know what the future holds, but I know who holds my future.  If this devotion isn’t for anyone else, I know for sure it’s for me.  My journey to A Confident Heart has begun.
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7-day Doubt Diet: Don’t Throw Away Your Confidence

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Winner of a copy of A Confident Heart – melissa SAVINGMONEY09@LIVE.COM
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Before we get started delving into our own doubts and insecurities together – I want you to know I’m just like you.”  I know I mentioned yesterday but if this is your first day joining this is meant to be a “sharing thing.”  So, before everyone runs off to your prayer closet to read by yourselves hang around for a while and fellowship.  Yesterday we laid down the foundation we’re going to build from.  Here’s day one, Are you ready to take God’s hand and trust His heart?

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Day 1: Don’t Throw Away Your Confidence
Taken in part from Chapter 1 and 61 1

Did ya’ll totally relate to Renee’s story?  (Get your free devotion here.) I can totally relate.  Several years ago, a friend was helping me clean out the playroom.  We were on a serious mission to get rid of junk – if anything looked like a Happy Meal Toy, part of a toy we coudn’t find or something totally random it was going in the trash.  Fast forward a couple of weeks, we have a blow up bed that we set up when our families visit.  Guess what?  One of those “totally random” pieces that we threw away.  Well, not so much……..it was the valve.  (We had to buy a new one)  Much like Renee’s example, I thought that little piece was insignificant and threw it away without a second thought.  It may have been small compared to the size of the rest of the bed however that valve determines the beds future.  Without it, the blow up bed was just a flat rubber rectangle.
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Renee heard God speak to her that she tosses her confidence away the same way she tossed that piece of rubber away without a second thought….. What about you?  Ouch…..Guilty as charged.  I too, have thrown away my confidence more times than I can count without realizing what was happening.  If you haven’t received day one yet of the devotion, the rubber piece was the power button to the remote control.
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It doesn’t take much, it could be one word from a loved one that triggers insecurity.  Everything Renee listed – the worry the creeps in and says I’m not good enough, no matter what I do I’ll never measure up. Then worry changes to fear – fear of the disappointment that is sure to follow, fear that I’m going to mess up, never finish what I started or lose something   Fear, worry, disappointment, insecurity they all lead me to one place, the road of self-doubt.1
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Then, when Renee said,” I see a pattern in my thinking that led to the pattern of my doubting.”  It hit me, I do the same thing every time I go to Chattanooga, or Georgia to visit my mom.  I usually take the same route without thinking  about it.  I just hit autopilot and go.  Sure there are other ways, but they aren’t familiar as least I KNOW what to expect.  I do the same when fear, insecurity,worry, disappointment whatever you want to call it begins to creep.  When someone says something that hurts me, or I feel rejected what do I do?
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What about if I make up my mind one morning determined that I’m going to change everyone’s sheets and somehow life happened and I never got started.  I know what emotions are coming.   Do you?  I know that even though I home schooled my kids, washed a load of clothes AND put them away, worked, then cooked dinner it’s not those accomplishments that my mind surrenders to – it’s the one thing I didn’t do.  I’ll tell myself I’ll do better tomorrow, why can’t I be more organized, if I would just stay focused then I’d get everything done.
I know myself well enough that - no matter how much I do I always think I can do it better next time.1
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The Challenge:  Recognize when we start turning down that familiar path of self doubt to TURN AROUND!  Just like a GPS God is whispering in our ears Recalculating turn right in .8miles on Promise Lane follow it to your destination, A Confident Heart.
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  1. Recognize the power I give self doubt.
  2. Stand up to it and claim the confidence God has already given me.
  3. Pray and ask God to show me when I turn around to toss my confidence in the can.
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The following is an excerpt from The 7-day Doubt Diet:
When you start a diet or physical training plan, experts recommend you complete a Body Mass Index analysis to determine if you are overweight, underweight, or in a healthy weight range.
Food for thought: So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. Hebrews 10:35-36, (NIV)
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“I’ve created a FREE “Doubt Index Analysis” to help you identify your most common doubts, see how they affect you and determine just how much self-doubt could be weighing you down by. There is a link to download here.”  Renee Swope

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A Message from Renee:

“Please don’t get discouraged if your score reveals that self-doubt is weighing you down more than you realized. I used to check “always” on all of them. But I didn’t want to stay there, and I don’t want you to either. That is why I wrote my book
A Confident Heart , and why I’m offering “The 7-day Doubt Diet”- a week’s worth of devotions from my book for FREE.”
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By the way I scored 146 on the Doubt Index Analysis.  How did you do?
154 – 110: Self-doubt comes and goes for you. When it’s present, it keeps you from all God has for you.

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A Personal Prayer Request from Kasey
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God is calling me to walk this journey out, please keep my family in your prayers today.  My husband is a pharmaceutical rep and his main drug just went generic.  To make a long story short – we’re waiting on a phone call today to find out his job will be eliminated.  My heart screams with doubt – we’ve already been through this twice in the last 8 years, you have got to be kidding me.  At the same time, I’ve heard God gently whisper in my ear all day – remember where I’ve brought you from.  I did not forsake you then and I won’t now.  He’s calling me to take HIS hand and trust His heart.
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I hear you God, I really do……..but to be 100% honest I’d rather you just answer my prayer that he won’t lose his job.  Why do I automatically trust more in the security of a job, than the security of God’s promises?

Are you ready to take God’s hand and trust His heart?


Chapter 1:  Discovering the Shadow of my Doubt
So don’t throw away your confidence, you will be richly rewarded.  You need to persevere, so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised you. Hebrews 10:35-36
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Tomorrow (9/9) we will start Day 1 of the 7-day Doubt Diet. If you haven’t signed up, don’t put it off -  YOU are worth it.   You’ll need your own copy to read (And its free HERE) as I won’t copy each day’s entire devotion.  We’ll go through the devotion each day together, sharing scripture, encouragement, doubts, fears, and insecurities that have taken up residence in our hearts.  The 7-Day Doubt Diet includes seven foundational truths from different chapters of A Confident Heart.
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Girls, before we get started I want ya’ll to know I’m just like you.  Okay, so I teach coupon workshops and update the blog – none of this happened because of me.  In fact, somehow God opened doors in spite of me.  I never wanted to coupon, and I never ever wanted to speak in public or even share my heart online like I’m doing right now.  A part of me wants to go jump in the bed right now and pull the covers over my head.  I’ve been putting this off all day.  Why?  Doubts have crept into my mind and “overshadowed” (as Renee says) what I know God has asked me to do.
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Things like:
  • Have I lost my ever loving mind?  Why on earth would I voluntarily put myself in such a vulnerable position?
  • No one’s going to read this – there will be no comments – nothing on facebook – no tweets – nothing.
  • I’m also afraid you’ll think I have it all together and ask why it is I’m sharing the devotion.
  • Or -  those that know me and know things that I’ve faced will remember every failure and think I’m not “good enough” or “spiritual enough” to be leading this devotion with you.
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This shadow is huge, it’s distorted – it’s not truth.
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Renee’s story of how God opened her eyes to the “shadow of her doubts,” really opened my eyes. (and ears!)  The list I shared above is so small compared to the doubts that swirl around in my mind.  Doubt, fear, and insecurities have walked beside me for a long time - so long that I no longer recognize them for what they are.  In fact, they are as familiar as old friends. When no one understands, doubt whispers in my ear in agreement.  Oh, and fear never leaves my side! At least I can count on it being here.  When I am hurt by someone I love, insecurity reaches out to hold my hand.  Just like the shadow in the image above – it’s not truth.  My doubts are huge and distort the truth.

As soon as I began to read,  A Confident Heart, the lies I had accepted as truths started to look different.  I thought the doubts were just a part of me, a part that I was waiting for Jesus to one day walk by and zap out of me.  Sure I’ve heard messages my entire life about trusting in God’s promises and not allowing my circumstances to define me. I thought that meant one day I could trust, one day I’d be confident, one day I’d feel equipped.  One day…….the timing was God’s decision I was waiting on him.  He’s the one who would  choose when one day would become THE DAY.
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Right?  You’ve been there haven’t you?  Then during the waiting I begin to doubt that God is going to zap me with confidence.  You know, he’s mad at me.  I messed up last week.  I didn’t honor my husband, my kids got on my ever-last nerve, that had to be it.  Since God is perfect and is not a man who can lie, then it has to be me.
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As I continued to read chapter one, there were phrases that jumped off the page at me – when did I become so hard on myself – what triggers my doubts – God doesn’t want me to live in the constant cycle of self doubt.  Fantastic – but I don’t know how!  Sometimes, I don’t believe His word is true for me.
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The next paragraph I am going to quote from the book I underlined, circled and highlighted twice in yellow and pink.  Renee says that “we’ll talk about the struggles, uncertainties, and fears we all face and how we can learn to actively trust God’s heart as we process our never-ending thoughts, our always-changing emotions, and our oh-so-busy and often confusing lives through the transforming truth of God’s Word.  We will find our heart’s confidence in Christ as we learn how to rely on the power of His promises in our everyday lives.”
The words – we we learn how to rely spoke clearly to my heart.  God wants me to trust him but unless I rely on the power of his promises then doubt will scream louder in my ear until doubt silences Gods promises.

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At the end of Chapter 1 there are several review questions – it’s up to you, but I’m going to get somewhere by myself with no cell phone, computer or children so that I can hear the still small voice of my Father longing to draw me close to him – waiting for me to turn to him.  This will be uncomfortable for me, I don’t like to be alone where my thoughts can go into overdrive without distractions.  I’m serious ya’ll, I even read emails in the shower on my phone.  I don’t go to bed until I am ready to pass out – why? If I’m not distracted then I might think too much.  It might hurt too much, I will think about my precious daddy who I miss so much.  I want to avoid the refiner’s fire and the potter’s wheel!
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The God of all hope is calling you out of the shadow of your doubts so you can live with a confident heart! Are you ready to let His Word change the way you think, which will determine the way you feel and eventually transform the way you live (Rom. 12:2)? Renee Swope
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Tomorrow ~ Day 1 of the 7-day Doubt Diet.

Then I will know that He is the Lord.  When I hope in him I won’t be disappointed. Isaiah 49:23 Won’t you join me?  For the next 7 days lets be honest with ourselves, get real about the thoughts that plague our minds and the doubts that strangle our confidence. .

Insecure or Confident? Kicking Doubts and Fears to the Curb!

 

You think I’m Insecure……….

 

………Maybe you know exactly what I’m talking about. Perhaps you have prayed since you were a little girl to be a mother, and here you are with kids, doubting you have what it takes to be a good mom. Or maybe you’ve sensed God calling you to serve Him in a way that requires steps of faith, but insecurity has convinced you that you’re not smart enough or gifted enough. Perhaps you have wanted to change jobs for a while and now you have the opportunity to do just that, but you don’t want to go. The unknown is too scary. Although you’ve been miserable, at least the misery is familiar where you are now.?
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I desperately wanted to move out of the shadows of my doubts, but all I could do was go through the motions and pray that God would zap me with confidence. I kept hoping it would happen right there in my bathroom, but it didn’t. Doubt and questions continued to criticize me.  (excerpt Chapter 1 A Confident Heart by Renee Swope download FREE here.)


Sound familiar? Unfortunatly all too familiar……

I understand what it feels like to live in doubt and insecurity. If only I could see myself how God sees me.  I completely relate to the struggles Renee described above.  I doubt my ability to home school  my kids.  When I compare myself to others who have a degree in education, I don’t feel equipped.  I find myself insecure in God’s call on my life.  Surely the next workshop I teach I will freeze and forget everything I have taught for the past two years.  I fear I’m not doing enough for my family, again doubt creeping into my thoughts

I don’t have to live “in the shadows of my doubts,” as Renee describes. It will take work on my part, but learning to walk in the confidence that God has for me wil be worth the journey.

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Are you traveling during the Holidays with a new baby?

We are excited that our friend and new mommy, Dixie, will be sharing her baby’s first Christmas with us. Thanks so much Dixie for sharing your heart. There are so many “firsts” with a new baby, and they aren’t always easy. We hope that this series will encourage you during the Holiday Season and speak peace to your heart.

 Is your family anxiously awaiting your arrival? 

Extended family can be a worry for new moms. Traveling long distances is often required. Then there are cousins, aunts, uncles, second cousins, step family, and host of others that are waiting in line to pass around your child.  I, for one, worked hard to set my daughter’s internal clock so she knew day was day and night was night. I also keep a flexible schedule for feeding. This helps me know confidently when my daughter needs what. Obviously my situation is not compatible with a large family get together. Instead of not going (or going and panicing) I decided to take a different approach.  Relax, take a deep breath, and remember that one week or weekend is not going to undo everything I’ve done for my baby. Instead of worrying about a schedule,I’m trying to think of this time as a break! My baby is within sight and my hands are free. Even if I’m still nursing, I can express milk before the event and let another family member feed the new addition…or I can use nursing as an excuse to retreat for time alone with my precious one.  My goal is to not fret over germs from other people’s children.  Babies wash well and let’s face the facts – they will get sick at some point!  I’ve decided I’d rather it be because of a family loving on my sweetie than because of a dirty shopping cart or overcrowded church nursery.

Remember families are made for love and sharing, the good and the bad.  Try to spend some time in prayer over your little one before traveling and being passed as the family football.  Then let God do the rest.

God Bless,

 Dixie