A rabbit resting and watching

By Jeanne Takenaka

There’s been a multitude of bunnies this summer. Every morning I walk, I’ve watched as rabbit after rabbit spies me and then scampers away.

I’ve always known they’re skittish.  

But this summer I’ve seen everything from wee babies to old mangy ones. And they are all the same in this:

They seem to live in a fearful place.  Maybe it’s because they’re smaller and lower on the food-chain. And probably because they are, after all, bunnies, but there seems to be only one way for them to overcome fears.

I can be walking on the path praying or looking at what’s ahead on the trail and not even see the little creature to the side of the trail . . . until it hops away. 

A rabbit hunkering in the grass, afraid

Other times, I’ve noticed them and slowed, tugging out my phone to capture a picture of their cuteness. But before I can move close enough to frame a good shot, they leap away. I know I only want a photo, not to hurt them, but they don’t know this. 

They race away as though I intended to make stew out of them. Granted, they can’t know my intentions; they only know what they think they’re seeing.

Fear is such a liarThis link goes to a great song if music helps you with concepts.

A rabbit sees the writer and prepares to flee in fear
A rabbit races away in fear

How many times have I been like those bunnies? I’m living out my day, minding my own business, and something unexpected comes along. My first instinct is fear. I begin planning how to get through the “maybe” hard-thing-coming. 

My heart races. 

I bolt to the areas of life I can control . . .

. . . Instead of running to God with my heart and my concerns and resting there in His presence. 

The crazy thing is, my thoughts charge from zero to sixty toward worst-case scenarios faster than a Porsche Carrera. But, I’m not quick to remember I can overcome fears.

A rabbit trying to hide in a field

If I could tell those rabbits some things, I’d share these 4 thoughts to overcome fears:

  • Don’t be so quick to think the worst case is upon you. Wait a bit and see if the unexpected, seemingly “bigger-than-you” obstacle might be a good thing, not a life-endangering thing.
  • Watch where you run or who you run to. I tend to run to “worst-case” first, rather than to God. But, this always leads to dark places where fear has its way with my thoughts and heart.
  • Remember, most of the time what you fear never comes to pass. When we focus on the “what if’s” we’re going to end up running, and probably to the wrong place. 
  • Remember who your real Protector is. Though the bunnies don’t know it, God is their protector. He’s our protector too. Nothing enters our lives that He doesn’t already know about and that He hasn’t already foreseen. He will bring us through if we trust him. When we trust God rather than relying on ourselves to walk through the circumstance we’re (or think we may be) facing, we’ll walk through it in peace rather than with hearts trembling.
Three rabbits on a dirt trail deciding if they will flee

He’s our Father, and He loves us. Often times, those big circumstances don’t come to pass in the way we worry they will. And many times, they end up not being as life-altering as we feared. 

But, in those times when the “worst case” becomes reality, we won’t walk through it alone. God always walks with us. He strengthens us to endure whatever we’ll face. Unlike us, God isn’t trapped into a minute-by-minute existence. He’s already seen every second of our lives. He knows how it’ll all turn out. We just need to trust Him.

A meme that says: "In those times when the worst case becomes reality, we won't walk through it alone." The backdrop is a baby bunny near a bush

Those bunnies may never understand these truths, but when we choose to look to God rather than to focus on fearful circumstances, we won’t have to skitter away into tall grasses. We’ll already be held by the One who loves us most. 

What about you? How has fear ruled you in the past and what have you done to overcome it? When has God brought about a surprising result to a situation you were fearful about?

Click to Tweet: God always walks with us. He strengthens us to endure whatever we’ll face.

I’m linking up with #RaRaLinkup and

19 Comments

  1. I’m in the process of entering into a contract with someone I’ve never met face to face. There’s no way to meet face to face. We met over the phone via video to go over details however the reality is once I send her my money for this project, she could run off into the sunset or not. She could be an honest woman of her word. I don’t know! That’s a fear I’m currently facing. Say a little prayer for me.

    • Jeanne Takenaka

      Yvonne, as soon as I read your words here this morning, I stopped and prayed for you. I’ll continue to pray. That’s a big step forward. May God guide your decisions and may she be a person of integrity! May our Father bless the work of your hands.

  2. Karen Friday

    Jeanne, love this post. What great photos and awesome analogy. This really resonated with me,

    “I bolt to the areas of life I can control . . .

    . . . Instead of running to God with my heart and my concerns and resting there in His presence.”

    Why do we run away from God instead of to Him? I surmise because fear IS a liar. Thank you!

    • Jeanne Takenaka

      Thanks so much, Karen! Relinquishing control seems to be one of my life lessons/themes. Thanks so much for stopping by!

  3. Jessica Brodie

    Love this so much. Amen – God is our REAL PROTECTOR. Your blog speaks to me, Jeanne!

    • Jeanne Takenaka

      Thanks for your kind words, Jessica!

  4. Andrew Budek-Schmeisser

    I cannot do a blessed thing
    about these scary days,
    except to turn unto the king
    and offer heartfelt praise
    for the tumours that assail the body,
    laying low what once was strength,
    making days go wan and shoddy,
    and nights crawl by at bitter length,
    but in this all there is a glory,
    through this all I see a light
    and my life becomes a story
    of persistence, the good fight
    in which I have no need to hide
    for God is fighting by my side.

    • Jeanne Takenaka

      Andrew, this poem . . . speaks so eloquently. Thank you for sharing your testimony and your choosing to live each day well as you look to the Lord in the middle of your horrible hard. I appreciate your words and your heart. I’m praying for you and Barb.

  5. Trudy

    I love this, Jeanne. And it’s got me to reflecting how quickly I run, too. I’ve said to bunnies or creatures, “I won’t hurt you…” This last line brings tears to my eyes – “Those bunnies may never understand these truths, but when we choose to look to God rather than to focus on fearful circumstances, we won’t have to skitter away into tall grasses. We’ll already be held by the One who loves us most.” Amen! If only I’d remember that more. Thank you for this encouragement to trust we are already held by the One who loves us most! Love and blessings to you!

    • Jeanne Takenaka

      Trudy, I’ve said the same thing to bunnies. 🙂 Isn’t it a comfort to know our Father already holds us in the palm of His hands? You and I are both growing to trust our Father more, aren’t we? I’m thankful for His patience! Sending you love and hugs, sweet friend!

  6. Lesley

    The bunnies are a good illustration of how we often respond. Why is it so easy to imagine all the worst case scenarios or to turn to what we can control instead of looking to God? Where we choose to focus makes such a difference!

    • Jeanne Takenaka

      Thanks, Lesley. I was thinking the same thing about the bunnies. And I’m the queen of racing straight to “worst-case” scenarios. You’re absolutely right. Where we focus makes all the difference. 🙂 May we both look first to God.

  7. Lily

    I love the pictures of the bunnies! This resonated with me: “Don’t be so quick to think the worst case is upon you.” I do think the worst sometimes, even though God shows me countless times how good and faithful He is.

    • Jeanne Takenaka

      Lily, God’s been working a lot in my heart and mind to re-train me to look to Him instead of those worst-case scenarios. I’m so thankful for His faithfulness. Thank you so much for stopping by!

  8. Joanne Viola

    Jeanne, I loved this analogy as we always have a bunny or two or four running about in our yard. It is amazing the lessons we can learn as we watch all the Lord has created and placed around us. These gentle and humble creatures point me to think on how God equips us with all we need to live – He has equipped the bunnies with speed and agility to escape harm. And He equips us as well. Beautiful post in thought and photos!

    • Jeanne Takenaka

      Hey Joanne, the bunnies like our yard too. We don’t have dogs, and everyone around us does. I think they feel safe in our yard. 🙂 They are gentle and humble. I love how you share the truth that God equips us with all we need to live. Thanks so much for sharing your wisdom, Joanne!

  9. Lois Flowers

    Yep, I’m hearing you loud and clear on this, Jeanne. I’m working on not running to “worst-case” first too, although sometimes I literally have to tell myself to cut it out! Wonderful post, friend.

    • Jeanne Takenaka

      Lois, you and I are kindred spirits in so. many ways. I have to give myself that little chat too. 🙂 Have a great weekend, my friend.

  10. Linda Stoll

    I always need a gentle reminder to turn away from those worst case scenarios that seem to plague us more than ever.

    The enemy is such a liar, yes, Jeanne. Greater is He that is in us …

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