When Anxiety & the Heart Collide – Monday Motivation – Peace Series

Friday night I did a rare thing for me, I’m sorry to say.

I asked my husband some questions to learn more about him.

I say I’m sorry, because I don’t do this nearly enough.

It was a simple enough question, “If I were to give you any gift, one you would truly like, what would it be?’


Maybe your man would say something like a fishing trip, a smart looking watch or a large screen tv.

Mine said, “food”.

So simple, yet something he really enjoys.

So, dropping my net (I sound like one of Jesus’ disciples don’t I? Actually I was scooping leaves off the bottom of the pool!), I headed off to the grocery store to make my man some food.

It was a wonderful night and I could tell he felt very loved!

Come Saturday, having tickets to Women of Faith, I headed out early. Returning at dinner time I found my man and daughter had spent the day together working in the yard…and they were still smiling. They had actually enjoyed it!

As Greg headed up the stairs to clean up, he made a joking comment, “We got Madi a new piercing today.”

To the normal person, they would know that was a joke, but for me, it was a stab.

It was a stab because I didn’t hear the words my husband-who-loves-me said. Instead I heard, “Madi and I joked around today at how conservative you are”, which is not at all what my wonderful husband said.

So, as my man cleaned his body, I dirtied my heart. Simmering the meat on my cook top, my heart and mind simmered too. Soon I too was going right up those stairs, all the while saying to myself, “Just express your thoughts honestly but calmly . You can do this!”

Here’s the deal: I did express my thoughts honestly and calmly too. ย Here’s the bad part: I had let my mind steal my peace and the watery eyes proved it.

I let my anxious thoughts weigh me down, allowing me to get to the point where unless I got it off my chest, there was going to be no peace. Seeing the anxiety on my face didn’t set the conversation up for the best possible results.

Proverbs 12: 25 says “An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up.”

Peace has to be won in the early stages; at the point where a thought tries to intersect with my heart. Here, we have to take these anxious thoughts and intersect them, instead, with the Holy Spirit.

I wonder what would have happened Saturday night, had a followed through with listening to the Holy Spirit? Might we have talked later, when I wasn’t emotional? Maybe the Holy Spirit would have revealed to me that my husband was just being jovial and had no intention of making fun of me? I only wish I had stopped and listened.

What anxious thoughts do you allow to intersect with your heart? How can you be intentional about listening to the Holy Spirit and the peace He brings today?



  1. This was absolutely perfect. I so this so many times with my husband. Thank you soooo much for this piece. I am going to read this over and over. Absolutely what I needed today ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Lynn Cowell says:

      Glad it spoke to you, Annalisa!

  2. Glad this worked out in the end.

    Would you mind telling us about your daughter’s piercing or is it simply contemplated? I’m not sure I’m reading it right. Did she receive a piercing with her father’s approval and you are against it?

    What are your thoughts on tattoos? They are hugely popular among my daughters’ friends, all about the ages of 16-20.

    1. Lynn Cowell says:

      Hey Caroline,

      I don’t mind your questions ๐Ÿ™‚

      My youngest already has her ears double pierced. She wants some type of other ear piercing. I think two are enough; my husband doesn’t really see it as a big deal. He didn’t know that I had already told my daughter “no” and didn’t want her to get it.

      In the past, I have been viewed as the conservative mom and have gotten some rebuttal now and then, so I just assumed that my daughter had told her dad that I didn’t want it and they had joked about it. I was wrong.

      Thoughts on tattoos…funny you should ask. My 18 year old daughter just got a tattoo on her foot on Friday. “Deep roots are not reached by the frost.” a line by J.R.R. Tolkien

      Again, I wouldn’t have chosen it for my daughter, but she is 18 and can make her own decisions. My husband Greg went with her because we did feel it was important for one of us to be there.

      I think that tattoos are awfully permanent; what is in today won’t be tomorrow. But I am not willing to break relationship over it. I wrote more on this post: http://www.lynncowell.com/2010/10/in-the-know-something-permanent-why-the-tattoo-rage/ and http://www.lynncowell.com/2011/11/wednesday-wisdom-tip-gauges-tattoos-and-other-piercing-things-we-do/. I hope you enjoy them!

      1. Sounds like many of us are encountering similar situations with our young adult children. One of my daughters has double ear piercings and just last week got her tragus pierced. So far, no tattoos and I’d like to think it’s because of my reminding them of the permanency.

        Beautiful line by Tolkien…

  3. Thank you for sharing your story Lynn. Thank you for sharing your imperfectness with us imperfect readers!
    I just wanted to add that I don’t think it’s a coincidence that you came home from a Women of Faith conference and had this happen. Satan was obviously working overtime. Because of all that had impacted you during the day for Christ, he wanted to distract you so that you wouldn’t focus on the good stuff and spread it around to your family. He’s so good at knowing our weak points and using them against us.

  4. You sure have that right, Karen! I need to get more aware of his age old tactics!

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