About the Author

Dawn Camp is an Atlanta-based writer, photographer, and essential oil slinger currently juggling two life stages: mom to three teens and five adult children, mimi to five adorable grands. She enjoys weekly movie date nights with her husband of 30-something years and a steaming cup of Earl Grey. Her new...

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  1. Dawn,
    How true that the things we fear, most often don’t come to pass. The enemy, however, loves to plant those negative seed thoughts in hopes that it will get us derailed just long enough that it renders us useless to anyone, particularly God. Over the years, I am learning the red flags of anxiety that come with these fears and negative thoughts. If it’s got anxiety attached to it…there is a very real possibility it’s not from the Lord and we can kick that thought to the curb. Thanks for the encouragement this morning that God wants us to walk in peace, not fear.
    Blessings,
    Bev

  2. Dawn,

    It’s interesting, because really, like you say, we don’t notice the things that are stealing our peace until they are gone. As moms, we tell ourselves, “I’m fine. This is just my life. I’m not THAT stressed.” But what a great idea you have, encouraging us to pause, think about it, and be honest with ourselves for a moment. Obviously some things, like my sons cancer, can’t be changed. But that bag of “stuff” sitting on the kitchen floor that I’ve looked at a thousand times and thought “I really should put that away” — that’s in my power to change. And when I finally quit procrastinating and just do the simple job already, it’s kind of amazing how much better I feel. I enjoyed your post. I will spend today thinking about what’s stealing my peace!

    Jenni @ http://www.genuflected.com

    • Jenni, I love this and your clear examples of those things we can and can’t change. I’m praying for you and your son today, and that you can clear some changeable peace stealers out of your way.

  3. I began crying as I read the graphic. I am facing a situation that is causing me angst and upset. Because of it, I exploded in anger all over my loved ones this morning in response to events. I feel horrible. I know that I have to deal with this personal situation with a friend but …. I am afraid. I want to do it today to get it off my chest but I’m shaking in my shoes and my stomach is in a knot. I know that the enemy must love that. I need to stand against the fear and just talk to my friend. Please pray for strength and courage to work through this conflict. Thank you.

    • Kristen, I started praying for you as soon as I began reading. I’ve been there, I understand. We shy away from confrontation because of the fear of a disrupted relationship, when in reality, the relationship is already disrupted and changed. Satan plays so many games with our hearts and minds. Be strong, do not be afraid for the Lord, your God, will be with you wherever you go. I’ll be praying for you.

    • Kristen, I’m so sorry. You must really love your friend to know you need to speak to her even though you fear it. I pray the Lord gives you healing words for your friend and clears this peace-stealer from your mind so it doesn’t continue to affect the rest of your life.

  4. Thank you for your words this morning. I remember a time when I was so anxious that every day living stole my peace. If the girls had a concert that night, or if I had Bible study, it didn’t matter what it was, even enjoyable activities began to unsettle me all day while I waited for them. What I began to do, was to question myself about why a certain event or chore was stealing my peace. I learned that going to the concert wasn’t really the problem. I didn’t want to be seen outside of my house because I didn’t like my appearance. When I could begin to bring that core issue to God, and deal with that, I started to feel a lessening of anxiety’s grip on my life. I began to feel more peace. It was during some of my most intense struggles that God gave me the strongest blessings of peace. I could feel it flood over me, and it was the most beautiful feeling I’ve ever experienced. Thank you for this reminder. Blessings to you.
    http://www.intentionallygraced.blogspot.com

    • Oh, Penny. What a blessing that you could zero in on what affected you, take it to the Lord, and feel His peace again. I’m thankful for that this morning.

  5. Similar to Kristen, I’ve some personal issues I need to mend with friends. I’ve allowed others to ‘offend’ me and I’ve ignored, instead of confronting the issue. This has left me in a ball of nerves. The holy spirit has spoken to me over and over again about addressing the issue, but I’ve chickened out. I just want to reclaim my Peace of mind to worship God and to love others. I feel like I’ve allowed certain situations to deteriorate to a level where I don’t even know how to start fixing it all. Any encouragement and wise words would be appreciated.

    • Henrietta, I was in a similar situation recently, actually had been for months. A few weeks ago I said something that brought the issue to a head—which hadn’t been my intention—and my friend spoke words that I desperately needed to hear. I saw her heart and knew that I had misjudged her and allowed it to place a wedge between us. We’ve shared a healed relationship in the weeks since that conversation.

  6. Wow, do I live in a fish bowl? It has been a few year since I did the clothes thing for my son, welll, last year, my youngest, he is 18 and does it now. I am currently looking for a job, laid off before Christmas. The projects are getting done day by day, but the mental energy they pull is crazy. I sort through a project with the three boxes, keep , giveaway and trash…. make, car, trash and storage trips then need a calming cuppa and a day with a book. Meanwhile the rejection of looking for work is there too. I keep speaking Shalom ,shalom to myself. Please pray with me today.

    • Deena,

      Prayers for your job search. It can be draining to search for work–so much so that we don’t have energy for the other stuff. May God bless you this year with a great job. Prayers for peace and contentment no matter the situation!

      Blessings 🙂

  7. I love that you encourage us to deal with the issue. I always feel better after tackling a project hanging over my head. My husband has learned that is how I operate. Last year we sold our home and now we live in an apartment with our 3 kids. I have so much more peace not dealing with home repairs! I have more time with kids. Now I’m going to get dressed and clean the kitchen so I can have more peace. Ha! 😉

    • Amanda, you’ve achieved an enviable level of stress reduction here. Few of us are brave enough to take those steps. I’m glad it’s all working for you, friend.

  8. Over the years “guilt” and “worry” has stolen my peace. I felt guilty for working full time and leaving day cares and babysitters to raise my children. I felt guilty if my home wasn’t as clean as I thought it should be for others to see. I was guilty of stealing all of my free time being a perfectionist. I worried about my children’s manners, their appearance-if they were clean and nicely dressed. I worried about our finances, my weight, what others thought of me and my family. I spent sleepless nights worrying about what was on my plate tomorrow and the next day. I actually ALLOWED guilt and worry to steal my peace. Now in my later years as I reflect on my younger life I realize that God was ALWAYS there. He was forever handling everything for me. The Lord did take care of every situation and circumstance in my life. There were happy endings to many of them. For the bad endings, the hurtful issues, the painful times…He was still there picking up the pieces and giving comfort and peace. If only I had stopped to understand that God was ALL I needed to get through life I would have been so much happier and had so much more to give. I was so caught up in doing everything myself I never truly let God in completely and I missed out on all the peace He was offering to me. I missed out on ENJOYING the journey.

  9. So, I needed to read this post. Praise the Father for his sweet grace in allowing this to hit me right between the eyes! The words ‘Self-imposed expectations’ just GLARED at me after I read them. As I get older I realize I’m getting a bit OCD, more than I’d like to admit. I feel the need to control everything and everyone. And it creates anxiety in me, when I can’t, which is most of the time. Especially this week, the Father is teaching me to stop. be still. rest in Him. trust in His Power & Strength.
    The Christian life is a beautiful adventure. I sure don’t want to live an anxiety filled, cranky existence, when I could have encountered opportunities to demonstrate to others the joy and peace only Jesus Christ can give.

  10. I had to smile- I can so relate to your opening scene. I’ve had the exact same experience with my husband many times – I’ll barely be able to breathe because I’m so tense about something drawing near (a deadline, a tuition payment, a mammogram) and once it’s over, I am a completely different (aka relaxed) person and feel like celebrating, which is news to him because he didn’t know how hung up I was on the “thing” in the first place! You are so right – we need to take steps to get through the yuck stuff because it’s never as bad as we imagine and we feel so free when it’s done!

  11. Dawn,
    Thank you for reminding me about joy stealers and how to eliminate fear by facing it!!! Hope you are encouraged by your writing…I am:)))
    Dare to DREAM, Kristi Smith

  12. Great post! I have always told my (now grown) kids two things to avoid the peace stealers:
    1. Slay the hobgoblins in your life (tasks we fear, apologies, embarrassing situations, etc.) – they just turn in to bigger and bigger monsters otherwise. Imagine yourself with a sword and shield as you do so.
    2. When you go to bed at night, take the things that are bothering you, that still need to be done, that make you feel anxious and picture yourself putting them in a trunk or a cupboard and locking them with a key until morning. They’ll still be there when you wake up and you can deal with them them, but they aren’t allowed to bother you anymore tonight.

  13. “Some need time and attention, like my mess. Block off time to deal with them, even if you’d rather watch Sherlock or read a book than fold and box stacks of off-season kids’ clothes or face whatever your thing is.”

    This line is just for me. I can think of a couple things that steal my peace, but it’s easier to watch a movie, play a game or take a nap than to take the time to do what’s necessary. Thanks for the reminder to jump in there and deal with things, or they’ll never change!

  14. Grace and truth both beautifully woven into the lines of this blog! This is so what I’m facing just now! There is a time for quiet and a time for action, but peace can be had in both. Thank you for this!

  15. I fear fear itself! I fear the unknown. I fear chaos. It drives me nuts. I am slowly working through some piles but am not making much progress. It seems so hard.

  16. I understand fear all too well. I fear the unknown, the what ifs. It is a horrible stronghold in my life. They are not the type I can fix. So I pray and trust that He will deliver me from all my fears. And that nothing can steal my peace.

  17. The Lord will give strength unto His people; the Lord will bless His people with peace. ~Psalm 29:11

    One of my most favorite verses. Thank you for this great reminder for us to do the scary things, so that they will no longer have a grip on us.

  18. Dawn,

    A lot of things have stolen my peace lately. I had a rough year dealing with my aging dad’s illness. My peace went out the window each time the phone rang–was afraid something bad and we’d be going to ER again! Also my job and hubby’s almost job loss stole that peace quickly!

    I’ve learned that when my peace is stolen I need to stop and find spiritual whitespace. Just take a few steps back and do some mindfulness breathing, exercising and a whole dose of praying. It helps me to stay focused if I get involved in church activities-listen to Christian music, etc. Tell the evil one to take a hike!

    Blessings 🙂

  19. Ahhh, the good ol’ reminder to “face your fears”. It gets me every time. Re-learning this one for sure. Thank you for this post of encouragement.