Fear is something that is quite a challenge to get a handle on and seems to be a constant companion. There are plenty of Bible references regarding fear: “Fear not for I am with you” (Isaiah 41:10)” Perfect love casts out fear.” (1 John 4:18) “Do not fear for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.” (Isaiah 43:1) “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord, your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9)
There are so many times in the Scriptures that we are commanded not to be afraid. They are not suggestions or helpful hints; they are commands. Commands as in “do not fear, or be afraid.” At times it is given in the positive: “be of good cheer or courage.” Either way, have you ever wondered why there are so many commands regarding not being afraid? I believe the reason is quite simple: we are fearful often! What are you afraid of today? Who are you afraid of today?
Reasons fear is so crippling:
- Fear often focuses on the past. Past mistakes and failures. Some remain fearful over things that they have confessed to God, only to have it always lurking in their minds.
- Fear often becomes our limitation. If we cannot push past our fear, it becomes a limiting factor in our lives.
- Fear though the feeling is real is somewhat irrational. Rarely have I heard people tell me they are afraid of something that is a real possibility. People are fearful of what people think without realizing that most don’t think and the few who do think are not thinking about us! Examine when in your life, you experience the sensation of fear and ask yourself why? Is it a legitimate concern, or is it for some other reason?
- Fear is natural. There you go; it is indeed a part of the human experience. this is not an excuse; it just the way things work. You are not the only person who has had to push past fear. Think of where you are today, somewhere back there you pushed through some kind of fear or you would have never made it this far. Now it is time to work through any present fear that is keeping you from moving forward.
- Fear can be paralyzing. Fear can so rattle us, that we are frozen in place and unable to take the steps we know we need to take.
What are some steps to take to push through our fears?
- Make a decision. The only way to break free from fear’s grip is to go ahead and do the thing that fear is seeking to stop. Do the thing, take action, decide, and push past the fear.
- Remember the past. What? I thought you were saying not to be a prisoner to the past. Yes, exactly. Periodically, you need to remember how you gained victory over fear in the past. Remember that you lived and even thrived and that mostly your fear was unfounded. It is good to reflect on how you overcame a fearful challenge in the past.
- Remember, God is in control! He is the one that has admonished us in the Bible to “fear not.” A good reminder is that He can handle and defeat our fears.
Whatever fear is holding you captive today turn it over to God and move forward in faith. Take action, and you will know that much fear is an illusion not entirely based in reality.
I understand that there are indeed fearful things that happen to all of us, yet much of our fears are False Evidence Appearing Real. Trust God and do not let irrational and unrealistic fear keep you in turmoil.
You can defeat fear with God’s help.