For such a small word it sure packs a mighty punch. Like a little giant it looms ominously over certain areas of our life.
I sometimes think of fear as that little black fly that comes in as soon as I open the front door. Even though I may not necessarily see it all the time, I can hear it buzzing from room to room, taunting me “you can’t get me.” Sometimes no matter how much I swat at that little sucker, it always seem to evade getting smacked down.
That’s like fear! It gets into areas of our mind, playing with our sanity and messing with our ability to function at our fullest potential.
But before we go any further, let’s have a look at what fear is by definition. According to dictionary.com, fear is “a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil or pain, whether the threat is real or imagined.”
That is a pretty safe definition I would say. However, about a year ago, I came across an impressive definition written by Authors, Sandra Casey-Martus and Carla Mancari in their book The Christ centered Prayer Revelation. This is what they say.
“Fear is a paralysing, restrictive emotional force that can limit your ability to act from a balanced state of consciousness. It .. can over ride common sense, causing a stumbling block that can prevent you from moving on with your life.”
Is this not the fear we struggle with? The fear that paralyses us and threatens to steal our life from us?
When we look at these definitions we see that on one hand there is a certain aspect of fear that is normal and necessary. It is a powerful tool, a protective means of moving us out of danger to safety. Much like me not leaning over the edge of the platform on the subway in fear of falling and getting ran over by a train. However, when fear is persistent and irrational, it becomes extremely harmful. This unhealthy fear paralyze us into dysfunction, stealing our joy and peace of mind. It tramples on our faith, stealing our freedom and take us prisoner.Persistent and irrational fear steals our joy and our peace of mind.Click To Tweet
Unfortunately, there are times we tend not to recognize fear until it has dug its ugly claws deep, distorting how we see reality. It may even show up disguised as something else such as insecurity, deviant behaviour, hostility or even bullying. But despite how it chooses to manifest itself, fear is very real and it seeks to overpower and eventually destroy us. That is the plan of the enemy.Fear is very real and it seeks to over power and eventually destroy. Destroy our hopes, our dreams and even our purpose.Click To Tweet
Have you been there? Are you there now? Living with any of these….
Fear of failure – as a wife, maybe fearing that your marriage won’t work out, failure as a mother, failure at your job?
Fear of rejection – by a spouse, a friend, a respected leader?
Fear of not been good enough, pretty enough, thin enough? Fear of not been socially accepted?
Fear of loss – of finances, of a job, of a loved one? Fear of death?
Fear of commitment, intimacy, change, the future….the list goes on.
WHAT DO WE DO ABOUT FEAR?
What do we do when fear invades our mind and does not want to let go? When we are looking down the barrel of a loaded weapon packed with lies sent straight from the enemy to inflict misery into our life. His attempt to manipulate our thinking, paralyze our faith and take away all that is precious to us? Our hopes, our dreams, our purpose?
We fight back!!
Isaiah 41:10 says this
“…do not fear, for I am with you, do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
These are the truths that fight fear. God’s word. His truths!
I normally use the NIV when quoting scripture but thought the NKJV was more powerful for this next verse.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7
Dear friends, the enemy is fully aware that, if we let him, he can mess up our ‘sound mind’ by using a spirit of fear. That’s why we need to gain back and retain control over this emotion. We do this by first praying, asking God for his help. We can’t do it without him, we can only do it in his strength and by his power. Next we read and read some more, meditating on His word, renewing our mind and our way of thinking. And then we trust. We purpose to have faith that God will keep His promises to cover and protect us, from the known and the unknown. We trust God to help us reside in His peace. When we daily act and live by faith, we dispel fear no matter our circumstances.
“Do not be anxious for anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
In Christ, there is hope, not just to overcome fear, but to live in freedom through faith; a freedom that leads to a life of peace and fulfilment in Him.
So come on dear friends, let us journey together by faith today. God bless you!