Fear. It’s one of those things that creeps into your life in such a way that sometimes you don’t even notice it. Once it’s inserted itself into your life, it starts dictating your actions; all the while you’re unaware of just how much of your life is ruled by fear’s grip.
I’m sick of letting fear rule my life. Who’s with me?!
I chose to write about fear today because I realized that just this month alone I’ve written about it at least three times in my journal! Okay, I’ll be honest: I’m also writing this in part so that I can look back and remind myself of what to do in the moments when I start to let fear worm its way back into my life!
Fear can manifest itself in small ways and in big ways. I have small fears like a fear of centipedes and a slight phobia regarding talking on the phone (no, seriously, I do…thankfully, it’s not as bad as it used to be because I started facing my fear. ;)). And then I have larger fears like a fear of failure.
I feel I must add though that there are healthy fears. I’m not saying that if you’re afraid to go skydiving then you should slap fear in the face and go jump out of a plane. Or if you’re afraid of knives you should totally volunteer to let a magician or an illusionist chuck them at your face. Heck no! What I am saying is that fear should not be your North Star in life.
I’ve noticed that so many times in my life I’ve been afraid of or nervous about something and then afterwards I’m left thinking, “What was so bad about that?!” Isn’t that how it goes most of the time? You’re afraid of something and then once you do it, you’re all, “Why was I so scared?!”
When I focus too much on myself and my worries and anxiety instead of focusing on God that’s when fear really starts to go in for the kill. When we just focus on our fears we become myopic which makes our fears and problems seem that much bigger. Our eyes are so full of our own issues that we’re blind to everything else, including God!
The other night I was watching the latest Signed, Sealed, Delivered movie (love those!) and they quoted this 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 NKJV)
In that moment, something about that verse struck me in a way it never had before. I love it when you’re able to understand a verse you’ve heard a hundred times in a whole new way. I realized that God did not give me fear! He gave me power, love, and a sound mind! Not a restless mind, hate or weakness! I know that sounds like I’m just rewriting the verse but something about that word order totally clicked in my brain and helped me to understand it so much more!
Lately, whenever fear’s reared its ugly head, I’ve been trying to shoot it down by doing what these verses say:
Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!
Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. (Philippians 4:4-8 NKJV)
So in those times when your fears seem to be too much for you to handle, just stop for a moment and think about His goodness, mercy, and grace.… Like the song says, “You’re a good, good Father.”
If you’re wondering why you’re so fearful, take a minute to evaluate where your focus is. Are you focusing solely on your problems, worries, etc… or, are you focusing on God?
I’ll leave you with this:
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea.” (Psalm 46:1-2 KJV)