I struggle with fear. Always have. I could sit here and write story after story of how something happened, I panicked and started writing my will because I just KNEW life was over. Funny thing is 99% of the things I’ve feared never happened.
I know a lot of you have the same issue. So how do we respond when fear has a hold of us?
1. Define your fear
Not all fear is harmful. For example, if you see your child run towards the highway and it startles you – that’s ok! What God isn’t against is the fear of sky diving, or walking home on a dark night. These things are dangerous and God gives us an appropriate fear to avoid death.
Most often though, our fear is about not trusting God with the direction of our life. Fear has to do with the idea that you’re alone and helpless, which is a slap in the face to a God who died to be with you forever.
So be careful to realise where fear is an actual problem in your life. Then attack that problem with this…
2. Question your fear
Fear does its dirty work by asking questions. It asks you questions about you. It asks you questions about God. It asks you questions about your future. And it makes you doubt. So fight back with your own questions. Here's some to get your started:
- Who is bigger – God or your problem?
- Who loves you with a never ending love?
- Who promised you eternal life through his only Son in a place where fear will be no more?
- Who sees you as perfect and righteous due to your faith in Christ?
- Who knocked down the walls of Jericho?
- Who got Joseph out of prison?
- Who parted the Red Sea?
- Who saved Noah from the flood?
- Who really took down Goliath?
- Who died on a cross for your sins?
- Who defeated Satan, sin and death?
- Who is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords?
Jesus asks a question regarding fear in Matthew 6:
And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?
In other words what has fear done for you? When has it ever solved any of your problems? Has it been your friend? Has it helped? Ask these questions! Journal through them! And then do this…
3. Replace your fear
Unfortunately, none of us have the will power to just read this post, close the laptop and vow to never feel afraid again. We can, however, decide that we are going to respond differently to fear than we have in the past. God gives us a replacement for fear in Philippians 4.
Do not be anxious about anything, 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 your minds in Christ Jesus.
It’s been said before, “Why worry when you can pray?” I love that question. When you get afraid, you have a couple options. You can call a friend, you can lay in your bed and fret, you can try to get out of your problems on your own power … or you can pray.
Now, to be clear, I do not believe that God always extinguishes our problems when we ask him to. Sometimes he says “no” and makes you go through it. But that’s not the point. The point of the Christian life is not to be problem-free. It’s to be with Jesus. And one thing he has promised us is that if we repent of sin and trust in him alone as savior, we get HIM. For now. For forever.
The knowledge of his presence is what gives us a peace that “surpasses all understanding”. Because it’s better to be in an ark, facing Goliath or walking through the waters of a sea WITH God than to be on dry ground safe and sound WITHOUT God.
Do you struggle with fear? What do you fear? How are you going to battle fear? Has this post helped you in your fight with fear? Thanks for your comments.