Have you ever felt absolutely paralyzed by fear? Unable to make a move forward, just rooted in place by sheer terror, I certainly have and it is the worst. It has taken me a number of years to learn how to face my fears and overcome them God’s way. I am excited to share with you what I have learned in hopes to save you from unnecessary pain and suffering.
Fear is manufactured by the enemy of our soul to steal, kill and destroy that which is our destiny and ultimately our blessings.
That is his only intention. How many times have the things you fear actually happened? I guarantee the answer is rarely most likely never. Somehow God has always stepped in, He always moved, always showed up and showed out. Oftentimes our imaginations are always much worse than the reality and we make inferences about outcomes based on our limited understanding of the circumstances. So why fear?
Fear is the archenemy of faith and they cannot coexist together, one will take the throne of your life.
The devil is hoping you will succumb to your fears, he knows, that when we fear, we are in his territory and he is free to play with our minds. God works by faith, we must believe in order for God to move in our lives. Trust is the drawbridge for God to enter the tower of our problems and destroy them. When in fear, we conveniently forget the numerous times God has delivered us from past situations. We become so fixated on the current situation that we are unable to recount God’s deliverance or even draw upon His love. This has happened to me more times than I count and then when God delivers me as He always does, I am repentant and sad, feeling horrible now on the other side that I did not trust. But when faced with another anxiety inducing situation, I get back on the merry go round of fear and of course, God mounts his white horse as always and does His part again despite my faithlessness. When does it stop?
It stops when we stop. It stops when we decide no more.
As the righteous, we are instructed to live by faith not sight, to humble ourselves under God’s mighty hand and resist the devil, to be anxious for nothing but come to our Father with prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, presenting our requests to God.
And then accept and revel in his peace….Simple right?
It is deceptively simple. And we must believe that God is capable and willing to help us. The last thing I want to share with you before we talk about the keys to freedom is fear is a SIN. It says in Romans 14:23, “Everything that does not come from faith is sin.” Many times when we are anxious or worried, we are seeking to control the situation, figure it out in our own human strength. In essence, we are saying, God, I know you are all powerful, all omniscient and the absolute manifestation of all that is good and loving, but I do not trust you to do what you say, I do not trust who you are or actually, I do not trust that this is all going to turn out the way I WANT IT.
So, God, step aside, I GOT THIS. Sounds pretty bad, right? IT IS.
Fear is defiance, rebellion and just straight up disobedience. Period. Point blank. The end.
I bet you are like me and do not want to be disobedient, so now with this new knowledge, how do we stop?
I would like to share with you a few life changes to kick fear in the butt once and for all.
GET IN THE WORD.
If you are not spending daily time with the Lord, you are losing.
How can you trust someone you do not know?
Ladies, the Word is truth, sharper than a two edged sword. The Word will change you from the inside out, make you stronger and show you God’s way of living life. You cannot go into battle without a weapon and that is what the Word is in your daily life.
MEDITATE ON THE WORD.
How many times have you read something and not absorbed it? Plenty, I am sure. When reading the Bible, focus on quality rather than quantity.
When you read the Word, meditate on it, which, means reflective contemplation, to determine meaning, significance or a plan of action.
The Bible is timeless and is just as applicable now as it was thousands of years ago. So as you read consider, what does this mean? What is God saying to me? How can I apply it to my life? Another way to meditate on the Word is to journal about what God is saying to you through the passage. Another option I use often is to create notecards of certain Bible verses and carry them with me throughout the day to remind myself often of God’s promises. I also prop notecards up on the dash of my car to look at them as needed when I drive. I also have a vision board that shows the manifestation of God’s Word in my life. You can also put up post-its around your house to refer to as well. Do what works for you to weave God’s Word into your daily life.
When you fear, PRAY.
1 Peter 5:7 says, “Cast your cares upon the Lord, because He cares for us.” So when you feel fear, your fears upon Him. And keep doing it. If you have to keep casting those fears throughout the day, keep doing it. Although, it may seem like overkill, keep doing it. Just as your mind became trained to fear, it must now be trained to release fear to the only one who can do something about it. Use God’s promises that you learn in the Word to cast out fear in prayer. Write out a prayer strategy to overcome recurring fears.
LEAN ON THE POWER OF GOD.
Beautiful, understand who is the boss and it is not these thoughts or even your mind. Proverbs 23:7 says,”As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” If you believe, you cannot overcome fear, you will not be able to.
But, I am here to tell you, YOU CAN.
The power that resurrected Jesus Christ lives in you, so what exactly does that mean?
You have the most powerful, healing and life giving being inside of you, the power to overcome all evil lives inside of you in the Holy Spirit. Everything must submit to the power of God including your body and mind.
Once you fully understand and walk in this fact, the battle is won.
Also understand these two things:
JUST BECAUSE YOU THINK IT DOES NOT MEAN IT IS TRUE
Stop believing your own thoughts. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, submit to him and he will make your paths straight.
God knows our thoughts are unstable and unreliable, so He seeks to give us stability through our trust in Him. Always line up your thoughts against the character and Word of God, if they do not match, go with God.
RECALL GOD’S PERFECT TRACK RECORD
I guarantee what you are facing is not new to God, He has overcome it before. Create a list of all the problems and challenges God has brought you through and all of your answered prayers. Refer to it often when facing challenges, you may be surprised to realize, God has already brought you something similar in the past. The only way fear works is to get you fixated on the present situation so much so that you forget the power of God. Perhaps you have never encountered anything like the issue you are facing, if so, go to the Bible. Read about the deliverance of the Israelites from Egypt, the defeat of Jericho or the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. Grow in faith and be encouraged by the powerful examples of God’s love and loyalty in the Bible, that is why they are there.
Stop Running and Resist, FIGHT.
Let’s just be clear, you are in a battle.
You are battling for your faith, peace and ultimately God’s purpose and blessings for your life. In order to win this battle, you have to fight but not in your own strength, fight with God’s time tested weapons, God wins every time. I have tried to handle them in other ways and lost dismally. When I first started to feel anxious thoughts, I ran from them, I tried to drown them out in television, sleep, work, people, just trying to stay busy to outrun them. It worked for awhile and then they came back full force. I believe my battle with anxiety was much worse and lengthened because I tried to run for so long. I was so scared, I refused to face them. But James 4:7 says, “Submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee.” These instructions are purposeful and ordered for a reason, once you submit your fear to God and trust Him to see you through, you can then resist the devil with the weapons of God and he will have to leave you. Why? The devil cannot withstand the power of God, he was made by God. The created can never overcome the Creator. Stop running and start fighting with the power of God.
The devil is hoping you will fight in your own strength because he knows you will not win. But the fight is fixed, God has already won the fight for you through Jesus Christ. Use the strategies and weapons He has given you to win and live the abundant life He has for you.
P.S. God knows the fight against fear is REAL and He gives us so many verses in the Bible that can be used to combat fear. Here are some of my favorites to get you started!
And without faith it is impossible to please Him for those that come to Him must believe that He is and He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, submit to him and he will make your paths straight.
Then Jesus touched their eyes and said, According to your faith, let it be done to you and their sight was restored.
Because you have so little faith, Truly, I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, Move from here to there and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.
For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed- a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written, the righteous will live by faith.
Everything that does not come from faith is sin.
1 Corinthians 16:13
Be on your guard, stand firm in faith, be courageous, be strong. Do everything in love.
Be anxious for nothing but in everything by prayer and supplication 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.
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not yet seen.
2 Timothy 1:7
For God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind.