Judy Lair is a licensed counselor and owner of Counselorplace Christian Counseling. She is the author of “From the Other Side of the Couch: A Biblical Counselor’s Guide to Relational Living.” Judy’s personal struggles with fear led her through the valley of hurt and sorrow. She now embraces a joy-filled life grounded in God’s truth and freedom in Christ. Judy uses her professional counseling expertise to tell stories that help people find healing and freedom. Her vulnerable, godly approach helps people find courage to move from Fear to Freedom. For more information or speaking requests, email JudyLair@counselorplace.com or sign up for blog posts at http://judylair.blogspot.com
“Freedom is attainable. Trust me, I’ve been on the anxiety side, gone through the Valley of the Shadow of Death, and now I’m praising God, eating at the banqueting table, and helping others make the same journey. Whether you find yourself stuck in anxiety, disappointment, grief, or confusion, your heart can be set free.” Judy Lair, “From the Other Side of the Couch.”
Sunday, October 19, 2014
Friday, October 3, 2014
- Hope that God really does love you all the time, no matter how you feel about yourself and your actions.
- Hope that your heart can be transformed and your life changed.
- Hope that you can trust in God and others rather than self-protect out of fear.
- Hope that God has a wonderful, amazing plan for your life!
Saturday, September 20, 2014
Friday, September 12, 2014
I’ve been in the cave. I’ve made many choices in my life based on what would cause me the least amount of fear—and the consequences have been devastating.
- Seeing who God created me to be
- Believing in God’s love for me no matter my immaturities
- Allowing God to empower me to conquer the Goliaths in my life
- Trusting fully and completely in God’s heart even when I don’t understand why he allows hurt and pain
Monday, September 1, 2014
Sunday, August 24, 2014
Monday, August 11, 2014
Thursday, August 7, 2014
Sunday, August 3, 2014
Before we can do relationship with others well, we need to revel in how God loves us. That means learning how to close out the world and sit inside God’s heart. Ask God to shut out everything clamoring for your attention and develop a special, unique place in your soul where the two of you can communicate.
Saturday, July 26, 2014
Listening to all the conversations about knowing people made me realize we often do the same thing with Jesus. Christians know a lot of information about Jesus. We know stories about him, facts about his life, have heard about him from his friends—but do we really KNOW Jesus any more than I know Frank or that woman knows the director?
Stories, testimonials, and facts are a great place to start. But how do we KNOW Jesus in an intimate, relational way? We start by putting down our protective shields and intentionally showing our vulnerabilities. Turn your face toward heaven and say, “Jesus, my name is _______. I know you created me and I know what the Bible says about you, but I don’t really know YOU. Can we sit here while I tell you about my loneliness, hurt, and sadness?”
In most instances, folks try to establish relationships by putting their best face forward. We’ve learned how to read the other person, reinventing ourselves based on what we believe will get us a stamp of approval. Knowing information about someone helps us to anticipate what they expect and how to get “in” with them. But Jesus doesn’t want us to study up on his likes and dislikes in the hopes of gaining his favor. Nor does he want us to just be an audience member who believes proximity establishes relationship. Jesus asks us to go all in—drop all our pretenses and invite him to see our nakedness. While that approach may send your anxiety soaring, believe you me, it’s a whole lot better than finding yourself scared and alone when night falls in your chaotic life!
Friday, July 11, 2014
- Put on your seatbelt (if you’re super short like me, you have to learn how to adjust the seat belt so it doesn’t choke you at the neck!)
- Hands at 2 and 4 (or is it 12 and 8?)
- Adjust the mirrors
- Make sure there are no children, animals, or peers who would make fun anywhere near you
- Wear a cute outfit just in case you get in an accident -- clean underwear, of course!
- Turn the key in the ignition and let go of the key before the starter makes grinding noises
- Spin your head around in every conceivable direction to make sure there is absolutely nothing you can inadvertently hit
- Put the car in reverse and start backing out slowly
- Left foot on the brake
- Right foot hovering over the gas pedal
- Move the left foot to push in the clutch
- Right hand shifts into 1st gear
- Ease up on the clutch while at the same time gently pressing on the gas
Sunday, July 6, 2014
I had the amazing opportunity to visit Israel a few years ago. It was surreal driving down a rocky road passing a Palestinian settlement on the left, a heavily protected Israeli settlement on the right, and seeing road signs for Jericho ahead. Standing on top of a hill overlooking Samaria, I felt the presence of God and sensed the sandaled feet that had passed this way. Psalm 121:1 came to mind. “I lift up my eyes to the hills--where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.” (NIV) What an amazing opportunity to lay my eyes on the same mountains that prompted David’s praise to the Lord.
The Bible clearly tells us God wants us to experience an abundant, full, prospering life, even in this broken, troubled world. That can only come about when we understand loving well is the key and put all our energy into identifying and pushing through the barriers. The abundant life encompasses love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There’s no way we can achieve any of these fruits without a vulnerable and transparent heart.