Monday, July 27, 2009

Faith vs. Fear

Quite a few years ago, after several years of apartment living, we rented a beautiful home. It had more space than any apartment my young family had ever enjoyed. A large backyard, a warm, open kitchen, a place for everything.

And Scorpions.

I am not talking about one or two scorpions… I mean an INFILTRATION of the vile creatures.

Almost daily we would see these quarter-sized monsters in OUR HOUSE. We would black light around the yard at night and find DOZENS of them. It was enough to drive a person insane.

Then I got stung on my finger. {OUCH}

The numbness traveled up my arm just like Poison Control said it would. Then after a few days began to settle in my finger, just like Poison Control promised. Dutifully, my finger obliged the laws of nature by remaining numb for two months.

Pretty crazy – especially coming from something I can squish with my shoe.

But what Poison Control failed to tell me, or perhaps they had no way of seeing into my dysfunctional psyche, is that every time (that would be EVERYTIME) I saw a scorpion after that, my victimized digit would throb at the sting site. My heart would race. And I would turn into a virtual maniac; stomping, crushing, grinding that thing into the carpet – all this while yelling at the unsuspecting pest why I was more powerful than it was.

Yeah. Pretty bad. You think I am kidding, but I am not.

I seriously went nuts when I saw those things. I felt violated, contaminated, overwhelmed and overcome by just a small little bug.

That’s a lot of emotional responsibility for an arachnid.

The point is {and it could very arguably be that I am a nut case} I was scared. Downright afraid of scorpions. My body would shudder each time I saw one and I would physically become sick. I vowed NEVER to live in a home again with scorpions.

But guess what? We live in the desert. And that is near impossible around here.

I never underestimated the blessing it was to have our lovely home in Mesa WITHOUT a single scorpion.

For a while we considered purchasing a home a few streets over from our Mesa home where, it was well known, there were MANY scorpions. The thought began to feed on the nerves of my Fight/Flight Response so fiercely I seriously felt I was having panic attacks. So, when the house turned out to NOT be the right thing for our family – I was completely OK with it. Renewing my strength of conviction, I vowed again, I would never knowingly purchase a home with Scorpions.

But I did. And I knew it.

Here is the funny thing with Fear. It can not exist at the same time as Faith. It is impossible.
One must give way to another. Where there is Faith, there will be no Fear. And visa versa.

So, what do I do when I feel like the Lord is directing our family to a home, but the neighborhood has scorpions (yes, I actually called MANY strangers in the neighborhood and asked). What do I do when I feel like it is time to leave my comfort zone of Mesa and venture to the Scorpion Territory of Gilbert?

I go.

I have to. I want to.

Now, I sit here tonight, attempting to balance the scales between Fear and Faith. And I am surprised, although I shouldn’t be, to find myself not hysterically scared about the eight-legged demons running around outside. (which thankfully there have been very few so far)

Am I still afraid of them? Sure. Will someone get stung? Maybe. Will I scream as I stomp one into the floor? Probably.

But, the difference is, I know Heavenly Father is looking out for me and my family. Whatever that is. Be it scorpion stings or worse. And I know by following Him, I will be happier than I could ever be otherwise. And that is why I am able to face my fear of scorpions.

(I still keep a black light by my bed though) :-)


Emmy said...

We lived in Mesa so we just had crickets, hundreds of crickets.. but I would definitely take that over scorpions. Thank you for the good lesson though. It is very true and something I have had to really learn for myself the last few years.

heather said...

I hate those things. HATE them. Keep the house sprayed!!!

Erin said...

I've never seen a scorpion. Yikes! (But I hear there are tarantulas in my area.) What a neat story/lesson. Thanks for sharing!

Fiauna said...

Scorpions scare the tar out of me. I don't know what I would do if they infested my area. But look how you've taken that story and turned it into a faith building lesson. Wow.

Our Crazy Family said...

We're scorpion infested at the moment--ugh! Let me know if you find out a new way to make war on them! We are currently just going hunting every night, and no one has been stung yet! YAY!

Natalie said...

Last summer we had a ton of scorpions. Once McKenna got stung, I called for backup. Since we have had our pest control service, I haven't had one scorpion in my house (at least as far as I know). I have been outside with a blacklight and haven't seen any either. Dave was sceptical at first when I told him I was hiring someone to spray monthly. Now he is a big fan of our bug man. I was a little worried about having pesticides sprayed regularly but the bug man only sprayed inside one time. Now he just sprays the outside perimeter of our house. For $35 a month, my peace of mind has been restored. (No I will not benefit financially or otherwise for promoting pest control-My post sounds like an advertisement.) said...

That is a great lesson!! It is so true too. May you never find another scorpion!!! EVER!!!

Brian and Shawntel Ashcroft Family said...

I know how you feel! Growing up, you couldn't put on your shoes with out shaking them out because there was probably going to be a scorpion on there if you didn't. I would walk through the house looking down if I was bare footed to watch out for them.

I found however like you that Heavenly Father always warned me to becareful when they were around. If I listened I was safe. I hate their sting and the pain. But the wispering of the spirit have kept both me and my children safe from many scorpion stings. I just have to love Heavenly Father for that.

Brian and Shawntel Ashcroft Family said...

I love Natalie's post... Yes the peace the pest control guy brings is so worth the $35 a month... Call the man!

Bee and Rose said...

Living in AZ, I, too, do NOT like finding scorpions in my house. My daughter jumped over one just last week and I almost had a heart failure! We live on four acres so we know their out there, but try to take all of the necessary precautions too. I know exactly how you feel! I just pray daily that they stay away!

Militello Family said...

I have been the exact same way about scorpions since I was a kid and my sister got stung! I am deathly afraid of and creeped out by them. We are contemplating moving to Gilbert as well, and that scares me so much with my newborn and small children who run around barefoot. Thanks for putting it into perspective with faith. I'll try to remember to have faith if we are led to a house with scorpions!

Jenny said...

When I was living in AZ as a young girl. My father was stung by one on his arm... it was rather large. He was in the hospital for a short time. I don't remember much more about it. Except that I was afraid of seeing them just as you are.