The Day I Chased Anxiety Away

I started out on an evening stroll apprehensively. I wanted to do it but I also wanted to be accompanied by someone. I hadn’t gone often alone but I pushed past my reluctance.

Finally out, I began walking at a slow pace. It felt good to be out this warm evening right before the sun went to sleep. I started down a familiar path along the houses of my neighbors. Turning onto a main street, I crossed over to more familiarity. As I scanned the trees and houses I noticed a set of eyes glancing at me. The unfamiliar face then disappeared further into his backyard. I kept forward with my eyes ahead on the path.

As I approached my intended turn, my chest started to tighten. You see, I had never walked this trail alone in the evening. And although the sun still peaked at me I wondered what lurked ahead. As I approached the trail my mind began to shout at me. Keep walking straight. Don’t turn right. Don’t turn right!

Like a fish fighting to swim upstream, I pushed past the voice in my head and turned right.

Alarmed.

Amplified.

Everywhere-ness.

These are words that come to mind as I walked hesitantly down the trail. Trees, grass, and houses further away seemed to encamp around me. I believe my spidey senses were tingling. I could hear everything around me. The leaves brushing against eachother, the wind’s breath in the open field, and even the little fly that added to my fears by buzzing in my right ear.

Heavy breathing. Chills down my spine. Pace quickening. I just imagined some large male deer or other animal would approach me in the forest.

Lions and tigers and bears. Oh my!

Marching quickly, I continued down what appeared to be an unfamilar trail. I had trekked this path before with my husband. But everything seemed new without him. He wasn’t there to share laughs with and admire as we’d stroll together. I repeatedly chanted within myself “There’s nothing chasing me. There’s nothing chasing me. The Lord is my shepherd.” Then gradually I started believing it.

Nothing appeared amongst the trees. No bears, no male deer, and certainly no vicious monster. I walked with a little more ease and confidence as I challenged the nothing that was watching me. But suddenly I realized that something indeed was chasing me.

As I approached a side trail, chills went down my spine. This trail went deeper into the forest surrounded by foliage and more spaces for my hairy foe to get me. My heart pounded. Anxiety was gaining on me. My mind sounded off to keep going forward. I rushed on the trail, over a small bridge, aaannnddd stopped.

Silence. Stopping on the bridge, I faced the forest. Nothing. I turned to the other side. Nothing. Just trees, grass, and a small river underneath with pebble stones. I looked beneath the bridge as the gentle water trickled down stream. Peace and quite. I looked into the forest to see if anything was there. Nothing but serenity. I exhaled deeply. I began walking ahead with a smile on my face.

The trail lead me to a familiar neighborhood close to home. I greeted one of the neighbors and continued strolling with ease. Taking in the warm air with a deep breath, I noticed my heart was no longer pounding. I finally had home in my eye’s view.

I embraced the evening’s journey as my pace slowed. Feeling a sense of resolve, my face beamed with pride. Anxiety was fierce but the day’s battle was over. I felt safe and welcomed me back home by nature and the Almighty. Opening the door, I smiled as I thought how I’d tell you about the day I chased anxiety away.

For so long anxiety has chased me but today I chased it back.

Shantel Snells

Throw all your anxieties upon Him, because He cares about you.

1 Kefa (1 Peter) 5:7 CJB

The Love Encounter

I learned to love from a distance. As long as you didn’t get too close to me, I was fine. As long as you didn’t invade my space we were perfectly fine. But you were different.

You told me that you loved me and I felt something. As much as I tried to hide, you sought me all the more. I was afraid to let you in. I thought you’d see something that’d make you turn away. My heart had suffered enough damage.

It ached and dripped with bruises and scars from the past. You smiled softly, looking intently into my eyes. Placing your hand over mine, you held my heart with me. It was the one thing I felt that I had left. The one thing that I attempted to shield.

I felt warmth coming from your palms and fingers as I slowly released my grip. I finally decided to let you in. The flood gates opened and the poison began to drain. You said “I am life” and my heart began to heal. I could not have done this without you. I’ve needed you ever since. And you’re constantly, readily, and deeply available to me.

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Psalm 73:26

I Wish

I wish I could block their eyes from seeing it. I’d shield them all. 

I wish I could cover their ears and protect them from the lies that spread like wildfire. I’d shield them from the darkness of this world. 

I’d cover them with my arms and serenade them with words of life, comfort, and healing. 

I’d help every child live a pure, youthful, innocent life. Their eyes would be bold and their roar striking. Their smiles forever vibrant. Their laughter’d echo in the airwaves filling the atmosphere with joy. They’d live a prosperous life.

Ooohhh…. but I find ways.

To be the home for the child that feels homeless. The shelter for the girl who innocence was robbed. The mother to a son who became a man too soon. For the jokester who laughs to cover his open wounds. The voice for the one too afraid to speak.

I am their peace while they are in my possession. For in that moment, they are mine. 

They are my children with no limits. My offspring with bright and glorious futures. They shine like the sun. Gleaming like the sun. And smile like the Son. This is Paradise.

Look at life with the eyes of a child. Kathe Kollwitz

This poem is inspired by my desire and efforts to end the exposure of children to pornography and sexual immorality.

To learn more about ending human trafficking, click here.

Plants and Seeds

A time of harvest. A time of blessings. No more strife. Please, stop stressing. Joy is here. The sun peers. Through the leaves of green. What a glorious scene. You thought this was the end. But joy cometh in the morning, my friend. Seed, time, and harvest. Water your crops. Let it penetrate your seed. There is no more drought. While others were drying and leaves were dying, you were planted by rivers of water. Now you rise toward the open skies. What a blessed time to be alive. You survived the storm. You overcame the chills. There have been deep valleys and hovering hills. But mighty are the works of His hands. Tenderly, carefully guiding you in His plan. Cultivating your mind and causing your stems to rise. Oh, what a blessed time to be alive. 

He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. Psalms 23:2 NKJV

God, Give Me Strength

When I don’t understand. When I feel terrible. When I suffer from heartache. When I ache with pain. Lord, be my strength. Be my guide. It is in you that I confide. How can I survive if I don’t have you by my side? Your glory brightens my face. Your love shields me, encompassing me wherever I go. Wherever I go. I did not comprehend the magnitude of this journey. But I do not regret walking this way. My past way would have consumed me eventually. Be my strength. Be my guide. On this journey, in You, I will confide. walking

If you or someone you know is at a crossroads, not sure where to turn, suffering from depression fill out the form under the prayer tab and I will pray for you. Check out a similar post titled Falling in Love All Over Again here. God loves you.

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A Harvest Season

 

The leaves are slowly changing. The breeze is cooler. I feel it in the air. It’s a new season. A new time to be alive. Fall is approaching. I will enjoy this late summer. How I’ve longed for this time. It’s not a midsummer night’s dream.

Thank you for the breeze. Thank you for the trees. Thank you for the sound.
If you want to see God look all around. His hands are in the branches. His smile is in the sun. His breath is in the wind. His voice is in the waters. His heart is in the details. Oh, what a time to be alive.

Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.-Ecclesiastes 3:11

A Made Up Mind

I’ve made up my mind. I won’t press rewind. I’ve been down that road too many times. I’d start up the hill. Pedal to the floor. Then I’d lose my momentum ending further back than before. I’d pick up speed, then spread my wings. Run off the cliff to reach my dreams. But then I’d stare at other things. Like cars, gowns, phones, and rings. These were labelled the finer things. Before I realized it, I had lost my wings. Uninspired. Lost and tired. I’d look for someone to blame. To carry my guilt and shame. 

Success is not a stroll in the park. It won’t remain with just a spark. Drive is needed. Courage too. Patience is crucial in order to get through. I’m done chasing the get rich schemes. I’ve made up my mind to live out my dreams. I hope it helps someone along the way. I won’t press rewind; it’s time to press play.

Today

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Photo courtesy of Shantel G. All rights reserved.

Today is the perfect day to be a great day. Today is a day that’s here to stay.
Wash away the residue from yesterday’s past.
Remember the Lord your God today.
Don’t waste time on negative thoughts, words, or deeds.
It’s time to sow a seed.
A seed of productivity.
A seed of creativity.
A seed of joy.
So let today be your best day.
With all your might let your mind excite.

This is the day the LORD has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it. -Psalm 118:24 NLT

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Be blessed and live your best life 🙂

‘Tis the Season

We know that it’s that time of year.
Smiles on their faces.
Hearts filled with cheer.
A new dawn has come.
Laugh everyone.
It’s time to celebrate.
Extinguish the hate.

‘Tis the season to be jolly.
Fall on your knees.
Worship the King.
Pursue Him like the three wise men.
Love and joy will He extend.

When younger we thought all about the gifts.
And boy, would we laugh at all the myths.
Like, “Santa came down our chimney so fast.”
Yeah right, the chimney we never had.
But hearts were set free.
A family were we.
Had ups and downs.
Even dressed like clowns.

The peaking through doors to spot a big gift.
The wrestle of wrapping a pogo stick.
The reruns of holiday movies and shows.
The chill down my spine when hit with snow.

The smiles on the faces.
The warm, sweet embraces.
The joy in our souls.
The heat when it’s cold.
These are the moments I cherish so dear.
Tis the season for love everywhere.

When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.  And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.
-Matthew 2:10,11 NLT

♡Happy Birthday Caden♢

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Photo courtesy of Shantel G. All rights reserved.