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I’m Not Afraid Anymore-by Heidi McLaughlin

Posted: November 14, 2018

When the balance of gravity in your life shifts, and the familiar and comfortable is taken away, it can paralyze us with fear. How do we calm our hearts and stop the anxiety when there are more questions than answers and we have no idea how we’ll survive tomorrow?

Fear is a monster that has the potential to destroy us.

November 15this the second anniversary of my beloved Jack’s death and I can honestly say: “I’m not afraid anymore.” Fear no longer has its grip on me and assuredly I tell you that through Christ I have become more than a conqueror. How did that happen? Let me explain.

I admit I was afraid in the months following Jack’s death. How I would live out the rest of my days…alone? What would happen to my speaking and writing ministry?  Would I fit into my circle of friends as a single person? What would my retirement look like all by myself? How could I look after my big house and yard? Would I be OK financially? While in deep pain we are raw and vulnerable and the enemy has a field day with us.  I recall the defeating words in mind that told me as a single person my future was bleak and empty. At my age to be alone is sad and meaningless.

Last week a friend asked me: “Heidi, how are you able to speak, travel and continue your ministry when half of you is gone?”  She was right, half of me is gone, but it has been refilled with the hope, power and joy of Christ.  Romans 8:31 is just words until we actually have to live them.

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”

When I know God is not finished with me yet, that He has good works and plans for my life, that the power within me is the same power that raised Christ from the dead, that He will never leave or forsake us, that He has written a glorious (not defeated) ending and that He called me to a purpose that is not finished, I can rise in victory and move forward.  His redemption plan for me is UNSTOPPABLE and He is not finished with me yet.

Now I must be MORE than a conqueror.

I always tell my audiences, “Don’t waste your pain.” To be MORE than a conqueror means that I must use my grief and pain to do MORE for this world. I chose to use my last two years of pain to give hope to a depressed and hurting world. I chose to tell people that joy is not something that just shows up, but that it’s already inside of us and we can appropriate it every day.  That life is not about having more but about being more of the way God designed us. Being a conqueror means to be a warrior for God’s truth and promises that are “Yes” and “Amen.”

The truth is I’m not afraid anymore. I’ve overcome the negative words planted by Satan and I won’t let anything stand in my way to what God has called me to do.  And, along the way, I choose to unleash joy and enjoy all the wonderful people God has placed in my life.

What are you afraid of right now?  Are there negative and defeating words are you struggling with? Ask God to reveal the lies you’ve believed and to change them into words of truth.  Then ask God to unleash your joy.



Posted in: Christ, death, decisions, Faith, Finding Truth, God's love, God's promises, grief, Jesus, joy, love, Making Wise Choices, satan

16 responses to “I’m Not Afraid Anymore-by Heidi McLaughlin”

  1. Lorena Crocker says:

    Beautifully written I thank the Lord for walking with you and strengtening you during the last two years. Jack would be so proud of you. I will share this with some other grieving women.

    • hmclaughlin says:

      Thank you Lorena. It’s been a hard journey but God is a restorer and healer and He does give us fresh JOY. It’t time…trusting and believing. Yes, please pass it on. Bless you.

  2. Charlene says:

    Ahhhh Heidi, you captured it, you were able to put into beautiful words and phrases what I have only been able to articulate in point form for 15 years! The skill of an author is to use words that resonate in someone else’s heart! And you have done that! Thank you, and many hugs as you continue to navigate this journey without your beloved Jack! <3

    • hmclaughlin says:

      Dearest Charlene, thank you for responding to the blog article and your encouragement. Yes, you know what this pain journey is all about and may God continue to strengthen and heal both of us as we choose to make a beautiful different in this world. With love…Heidi

  3. Shirley Longman says:

    Thankyou Heidi… such an encouragement through your pain for women going through loss of any kind…your determination to stay steadfast so that God could turn beauty from ashes and use your story to draw women to Himself and healing.. I am thankful for as are many. May this spur you on as it does me dear precious sister. Our stories aren’t finished. Love and hugs

    • hmclaughlin says:

      Oh dear faithful Shirley. Thank YOU for your love and encouragement in reaching out to me. Yes, both of our stories are not finished yet and God has more chapters to write. May they be hard but glorious! Hugs and love…Heidi

  4. Dee Lundgren says:

    Glad you are using your pain as your message. Blessings to you!

  5. Laurie says:

    Thank you Heidi. I lost my husband 5 months ago. Initially, during that gracious period called shock, I seemed to feel more purpose to go on. I have a new grandson who has had 7 surgeries in his seven months of life, I have 2 daughters who lost their dad, I have a mother-in-law who lost her so. They all “needed” me. Now, although their needs have not changed, mine have.
    I know that coming into the holidays, and all the firsts, that it will get tougher, but I DO have joy, and I want that joy to come out and be used to minister to those who have no hope. To those who when they lose such love, that they think they can never be loved again. They are unaware that LOVE is here, and alive, and wants them to love HIM.
    My friend Kit shared this blog with me, so I’m anxious to go back and read about your journey. Thank you for your previous words. Reminders that we do still have a reason for being here.

    • hmclaughlin says:

      Thank you Laurie for sharing your story with me. Those are very difficult situations to go through and I pray that you will surround yourself with lots of love and care. I “crashed” after 3 months, because as you say, the first few months are shock and grace. Continue to give yourself grace and allow the “grief story” to unfold in your life so that you heal well. It was after 1-1/2 years that I felt really strong, physically, emotionally and spiritually to begin the new journey of using my pain to help a hurting world. Now I am totally on fire to use my pain to make a different. But, it’s taken time and God has healed and restored. And…I know He is not done with me yet. OR YOU. May God continue to heal you, strengthen you and help you to unleash the joy that is already inside of you. May the best days of your life still be ahead of you. With blessings.

  6. Sharon Neuman says:

    Beautiful words, Heidi! I pray for you and your family every night and pray that God would bless your ministry. Jack was wonderful about keeping in touch and I know you miss him so much. He was a wonderful man and brother-in-law. I will continue to pray for you and yours. Sharon

    • hmclaughlin says:

      Thank you Sharon, yes Jack talked about you very lovingly. I do miss him so much, but he deposited so many good things in my life and they are helping me to move on with courage. Blessings on you. Thank you Thank you for your prayers.

  7. Dear Heidi,
    Rejoicing with you that you’ve travelled through the grief and using your journey to encourage and bless!
    I’ve been widowed twice and relate so much to what you said.
    2nd hubby suffered with dementia for 10 long years. That journey is resulting in another book to encourage other care-givers.
    Blessings to you!

    • hmclaughlin says:

      Angelina, yes I have followed your story for years, and I’m so sorry about the last then years, they must have been very difficult. Praise God for your recent book, and may it give you joy as your continue to solider on! Hugs, Heidi

  8. Zsuzsanna Koller says:

    Beautiful, deep, spiritually insightful and inspirational reflection on the true meaning of this Life. …..in all its suffering and pain…to be used for our purification of life’s meaning and purpose…culminating in our deeply felt, and divinely ordained responsibility for a joy- filled purpose-filled life.
    God bless you Heidi. With Love and hugs. Zsuzsanna

    • hmclaughlin says:

      Thank you Zsuzsanna for your beautiful words. Yes, it has been a journey of immense pain, but I will not let it go to waste. I keep asking the Lord to open doors so that I can bring His power and message to a hurting and broken world. May God be with YOU and unleash unstoppable JOY.

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