writing

NOT THE SPIRIT OF FEAR

FEAR ATTACKS

One morning I took a break from my writing, walked out back, and was surprised to see a show of aggression taking place on my wood fence.

One pathetic, ugly opossum clung to the top of the fence, confused, and pursued by a bigger, uglier bully—with lots of sharp teeth. Marsupial number one was apparently trying to figure out to escape. But when he endeavored to get away, the mean, toothy adversary would resume stalking him and inching ever closer. If he sat still, the antagonist would hiss dreadful threats and mocking intimidations. It was too high to jump from the fence to safety. And on one side of the fence there stood a big, dangerous-looking human—staring at him.

This display of strange behavior went on for quite awhile. The threatened opossum acted hopeless. He wobbled on his perch, turned, gazed at the ground, tried unsuccessfully to retreat, and showed how befuddled he had become.

How like humans.

We sometimes become stuck in a situation that we don’t like—one that makes us freeze in alarm. There seems to be no way out. Life runs aground and tosses us out on a deserted island. There’s no help riding to our rescue and no beautiful sailboat on the horizon.

We can’t run. We dare not turn back and risk attack from the enemy or those who don’t care about us. We cannot abandon our tiny, safe island and jump into unknown depths. Everything looks dismal. Life withers. We are going to fall or fail. There’s seems to be no hope presenting itself.

Satan appears to gloat, inch forward, bare his razor-sharp teeth, and taunt us. He doesn’t want us to find help. He binds us with dread. We turn in circles, uncertain, terrified, upset, and perplexed.

Sound familiar?

But there are scriptures to remember when caught between circumstances and dilemmas that Satan takes delight in pushing upon us. He wants us to be afraid. He wants to intimidate us, make us think our footing will slip, and that we will fail.

“Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh. For the Lord shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.” Proverbs 3:25, 26 KJV.

The second one tells we can be far away from the oppression. We can believe in safety, as it comes from God. “In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear; and from terror; for it shall not come near thee.” Isaiah 54:14 KJV

And one final scripture says, “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7 KJV

Have you faced the oppressor? Have you feared that your feet would slip? Please, scroll downward to leave a comment.

Paper Dolls, Imagination, and Writing

From the time I was a little girl, my mother helped feed my imagination. She showed me ways to entertain my younger brothers  with stories I made up. Paper dolls became my characters and catalogs became my prized asset. As soon as the catalogs were outdated, I attacked them with scissors. I could create whole families and pair them up as I saw fit. Of course, each couple had to have a baby, no matter how many other brothers and sisters there were in the paper doll family.

Every family needed furniture to sit on and so did my paper dolls. My mother showed me how to cut couches, beds, highchairs, chairs, tables, and rockers out of cardboard. No cardboard box was safe after that. I would grab the cereal boxes and detergent boxes, etc. I could decorate the furniture with crayons, paint, and pictures from the catalogs. I bent the paper dolls at the waist and placed them on the furniture. Babies snuggled down in their baby beds or cradles. Paper doll mommies could rock little children and watch a cardboard television.

If I did not have a catalog to cut up, my mother would draw people for me. My imagination expanded as I cut out the hand drawn figures, colored them, and added them to my collection of make-believe characters. Those times shaped my longing to be a story writer.

My brothers either joined in the fun or sat and watched me play and talk aloud, building stories as I introduced the families of paper dolls. I am sorry to report that dishonorable paper dolls, representing criminals or thieves, met the quick hand of justice. Heads would roll or the cords to the drapes became a hangman’s noose. Sorry … life is harsh in a paper world. The innocent must be protected!

We lived out in the country in Michigan. At that time, we had no television so my imagination became Mom’s babysitter. And even today, I have three, old catalogs stacked on a closet shelf. The tattered catalogs have come in handy when a child is bored with the store bought toys. Cereal boxes are confiscated and made into interesting copies of furniture.

I would rather have children leaving pieces of catalog or magazine pages on the bedroom floor, and using their imagination, instead of sitting in front of the television or sprawled on a couch with an electronic device in their young hands.

Thank you for reading this post. It gives you an idea of where I started with my storytelling and writing. Please, scroll down and leave a comment.              

 

 

Karen Campbell Prough

© Karen Campbell Prough 2012

 

 

 

 

 

Represented by Linda S. Glaz at
Finding the Extraordinary God in our Ordinary Lives