About the Author

Amber C Haines, author of Wild in the Hollow, has 4 sons, a guitar-playing husband, theRunaMuck, and rare friends. She loves the funky, the narrative, and the dirty South. She finds community among the broken and wants to know your story. Amber is curator with her husband Seth Haines of Mother...

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  1. Amber,
    Unfortunately, with having OCD, I know all about negative thought loops. It is not uncommon for a thought to pass through the same gate hundreds even thousands of times. The enemy loves to whisper lies in hopes that I will pick up on one and run with it. We all don’t have OCD, but we can purposely choose to feed our mind positive truth (in His word, praise music, reading here at (in)courage, getting out in His creation). I find when I do that, and for me it’s a necessity, I focus more on the positive and on His love which ultimately drives out fear. Thanks for setting my thought loops in the right direction this morning!
    Blessings,
    Bev

  2. Thank you for sharing this, Bev. I actually got this language from a friend whose child has OCD. I related so much with how “thoughts loop.” Some of us struggle more with it than others. My husband doesn’t struggle as much with it. He can have a thousand new things running through his mind all the time, and I’ll want to go please revisit the thought that was way back there!

    For me, that time in the morning of quiet is beyond important.

  3. Thank you Kim, needed the encouragement. My grandson Tobin had pneumonia two weeks ago and now has the respiratory illness that’s going throughout the country. My friend Emma is in the hospital because one of the twins has a life threatening issue with its bowel. Feeling sad and feeling as if joy is beyond my reach. So your thought that we must focus on the one who keeps us safe will be my thought for today! I will find scripture to back it up!

  4. ” Everything I fear becomes the focus” …. Prov.9:10 – the fear of The Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
    Chrystall, I pray for you that you would feel the strong arms of the Father holding on to you and giving you peace. I also pray for loving friends to be just be with you in whatever capacity you need at the moment.

  5. “So I’m asking myself, and you now, isn’t He our rock? If I am so redeemed, must I go about like I am a servant of a shakeable kingdom?”

    He is our Rock, but we live in an earthly kingdom made of rubble. Because of original sin and our broken, fallen natures, we are forced to live among the ruins for the duration of our earthly existence. It doesn’t mean that we ought to wallow in this and not try to make something beautiful out of even this life or that because we live in this world that we are *of* it. Obviously, scripture says differently. We ought to live as children of the King, but none of us are perfect and we all fall into sin and experience the consequences of the sinfulness of others and the brokenness of our own humanity. It is good and right that we ought to keep our eyes on Our Rock and continually turn back to Him when we have fallen, but there is a balance between having an awareness of our need to rely on and behave as those who belong to the Redeemer and being scrupulous about every negative thought and action to the point that it steals our joy or causes us to feel defeated. It is good to acknowledge our weaknesses, confess our sins and repent of them, and do our best to keep our eyes on Him, but do all of these things with the understanding that when we fail, we get back up, dust ourselves off, and start anew.

  6. “Isn’t acceptance what I want, too? Nothing makes me question my place in this world more than insecurity.”

    If you never wrote another d*** word here, at your blog, at other sites, or for a publisher you are and will be acceptable and secure cause He says so. Whatever He says is so!

  7. I fully relate! So nice to hear from others, who are not doubting their faith but just dealing with Life as a child of God, living every day the best way we can. You do the writing please – I’ll do the reading! Xx

  8. I snagged on the same quote as The Momma above. “Isn’t He our rock? If I am so redeemed, must I go about like I am a servant of a shakeable kingdom?” Actually, I pulled up this blog post again just so I could copy that into my journal and think about it more thoroughly. Thanks for your words today!

  9. Amber,
    Enjoyed this today. Love your blog. I am a mama of five boys and homeschooling too. I so relate to your mothering heart. Wish we lived closer to have a cup of coffee and swap stories! Mothering boys is not for the faint of heart, amiright? Blessings to you!

  10. “What is in our hearts and what comes out of our mouths has everything to do with our safety and security.”

    Beautifully said, Amber. I am all too familiar with negative thoughts creeping into my head. I am working on dismissing them before they have the chance to move in and make themselves comfortable.

    You are in my prayers!

  11. Amber,

    I definitely have some OCD tendencies with ADHD mixed in. Yes I get bad though loops from time to time.

    I need to remember/remind myself and pray this prayer often:

    Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
    be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.
    – Psalm 19:14

    I need for my words to be gentle and pleasing instead of harsh.

    Blessings 🙂

  12. “Nothing makes me question my place in this world more than insecurity.”

    I think, if we’re honest, we all struggle with this. Thank you for this encouraging reminder today: “I know I’m in my right place when my foundation is the Rock.” 🙂

  13. What an absolutely beautiful post! Thank you so much for sharing.

    p.s. my favorite line was ““No, you may not have juice. Only water forever.”” because that is SO me

  14. Interesting. I like David Foster Wallace observation on these thought-loops or default settings. They reveal the idols of our hearts, or who we really are, and it takes conscious effort to first be aware of them, and then to change them. I like your examples.