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An Antidote for Fear

An Antidote for Fear

"Don't let the fear of WHAT IF take away the joy of WHAT IS."
I first saw this quote scrawled on a sidewalk in 2012. That day I was having incredible anxiety. I was pregnant with my third child around a year after my second child had died inexplicably in utero at full term. 

My husband was on a business trip out of province, and my 3-year-old son and I were tagging along. I was having a difficult time relaxing or enjoying anything because I saw imagined dangers around every corner for my son, myself and my unborn child. 

That day we were walking to take my son to a playground in an unfamiliar neighbourhood that we'd found online. As we walked, I felt that all-too-familiar heaviness on my chest.  I was trying to control my breathing, while I prayed a silent prayer for God to help ease my fears. 

Just before we made it to the playground, we passed a small coffee shop. Just outside the door, someone had written in chalk, "Don't let the fear of WHAT IF take away the joy of WHAT IS."  I stopped and stared at the words with tears in my eyes. I felt as if it was written just for me in that moment. The heaviness lifted from my chest, and I knew God saw me and had answered my prayer.  

This quote helped me to look for all that was true in that moment. I was pregnant with a healthy baby, I had an amazing little boy and a supportive husband who loved me. I was free. I had wonderful family and friends who cared for me. I had a faithful Creator who loved me so much that he would orchestrate a beautifully poetic answer to my prayer in real time. {P.S. He loves you this much, too!}

It has been eight years since that moment, but this phrase has been an encouraging mantra for me almost every day since. . . including today.  

This past week was one of the longest I've experienced in a long time. There are sad realities that we cannot deny and are worthy to be mourned. That is the truth. 

There are other truthful realities that we also should not deny. We are so incredibly blessed. We will have enough of everything we need. We are loved and we have love to give. We are free. This is also the truth. 

Fear comes into play when we dwell only on the negative realities while ignoring the positive realities. Fear is believing the lies of scarcity and discarding the truths of abundance. 


I believe an antidote for fear is gratitude.  There are gifts everywhere if we chose to unwrap them as such. 

For the past 90 days or so, I have been starting every morning by writing five little things I am thankful for. This past week I encouraged my kids to write down one or two things that they are thankful for each day as well. I think this is going to be an important practice to help us look for the blessings and the joyful truths in our lives as we maneuver the coming days, weeks and months ahead.  

Perhaps this quote or practice might encourage you today as well, friend. Be well!

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