What is the cause of your debilitating fear, and what is the solution?
IT’S WORTH CONSIDERING
Why are You so Afraid?
Even without the Coronavirus, too many Christians live too much of their lives in fear – fear of the unknown mostly, but often in fear of people-what they will think or what they will do. Some live their lives in fear of being rejected or abandoned. Their fear controls them and keeps them in bondage. They build emotional walls around themselves, thinking that their walls will protect them from experiencing what they dread. They live their entire lives in a prison of their own making.
These same Christians end up separating themselves from everything that would free them and extinguish the fear once and for all. From their perspective inside their protective walls, all they can see is their immediate threatening circumstance. All they can experience is their natural human instinct-fight or flight. The circumstance becomes everything and all their energies must be focused on their perceived need for protection. To make matters even worse, their wall keeps out the Holy Spirit, who is God’s gift to help them see their circumstances from God’s perspective.
AS I SEE IT
It should be clear that none of these fears is from God. The only fear that our Heavenly Father encourages is a fear of Him (2 Cor. 5:10-11; Heb. 10:31). Sadly, this is probably the least exercised fear throughout all of humanity. We rationalize our fears or phobias by claiming that it’s just the way we are, as if we’re helpless victims. When we see others victoriously coming through their ordeals, we claim that they just handle stress better than we do. We keep rationalizing our responses until we finally are confronted with this startling and undeniable truth:
Our fear causes us to question what God has just told us to do. Just because we don’t regularly hear Him speaking through our circumstances, through others or through His Word, doesn’t mean He’s not speaking all the time. Our problem is that we let our circumstances drown out His still small voice, inaudible, but just as real. Often, our fear has come because God had orchestrated something that, as we see it, will take us too far out of our comfort zone. He sees it as something to strengthen us. We see it as something that will destroy us.
Why such a disconnect? We have never allowed ourselves to experience God’s love for us up close and personally. When we keep others at a safe distance, we do the same with Him. We can claim that we actually do love God, and that we have legitimate concerns, usually based on something from our past or a present perceived threat. The truth, however, is wrapped up in 1 John 4:18 which says that there is no fear in love, and that perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. When we embrace our fears, deep down we are afraid that someone is about to punish us. We transfer the same disillusion over to God, denying that the punishment accompanying God’s wrath against our sins was completed at the cross. There is now no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus (Rom. 8:1).
Since perfect love casts out fear, the answer is to accept God’s perfect love for us. We must tear down our walls and let Him in. If we aren’t convinced of His love for us, fear will always win. If you are a child of God, fear of circumstances or people or the unknown has no place in your life and is an indication of your lack of love for your Heavenly Father. If we truly love God, we will go through life confident in our Father’s love and care for us. We will believe His promises and focus on them more than our perceived problems. We will know that His hand is in everything He allows into our lives and that He has a purpose in it.
ON THE LIGHTER SIDE
Experience is something you don’t get until just after you need it.
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