I’ve never really been afraid.
I’ve been scared a few times, but scared and fear are not the same.
I’m scared of snakes, but I’m not fearful of them.
A few times in my life, I’ve been scared or worried about tight money issue when the bills mount up, but I’ve never been fearful of those times.
Fear is one of those things that, when it comes, seems to engulf your life. You can’t escape it, no matter where you go and no matter what you do. It’s with you as you sleep and it’s still there when you awake. It’s something that terrifies you.
Jesus told us to not allow worry to define our lives and somehow, I don’t believe he was addressing life-defining situations. He was talking about being worried that we’ve overspent our bank account. He was focusing on our anxiety of losing a job. He was addressing our worry of not being a good enough parent to our children. In those situations, he told us to trust him and not be worried.
But fear is a whole other issue.
Fear makes you do some strange things. It makes you act in a way you would not otherwise. It makes you respond in ways that, even you, cringe at. You don’t want to be on the other end of you and suddenly people start putting distance between you and them because of this new way you react and respond. They don’t understand, because they, like you, don’t understand true fear.
While I don’t believe fear is
Fear makes it possible for the sin already inside to escape.
In other words, it only makes possible what is already harboring down below. The things that would otherwise, never see the light of day now seem to be able to escape.
Because we are afraid.
And the very core of fear is the reality that whatever we are afraid of is clearly beyond our control. There is nothing I can actually do about my situation and it’s so big and overwhelming, I am afraid of the outcome, and because of that I can lash out in ways that I would not otherwise.
How do you overcome this? There are a few ways do handle this and I want to help you take a step.
- Give yourself grace. Acknowledge this as exactly what it is. It is fear and there is something, a situation that is beyond your control and it is terrifying you. Give yourself the grace to not function at peak performance.
- Take time to recover. Alone time seemed to be incredibly healing for me. For me, alone time meant that I was somewhere with headphones on, listening to my favorite worship setlist and hearing a word from the Lord. There are times when I try to do this early in the morning or late in the evening when the world is, otherwise, silent. But then there were also moments when I felt the need to escape in the middle of the day and would resort to a recliner and headphones where the chaos could continue but I was in my own world for a few minutes. You’ve got to find your place of escape and frequent there often.
- Transparency. There is incredible power in being open. Our adversary speaks lies. He wants us to believe the lies that are being spoken in our minds that no one else hears. When we reveal these lies, we take away that ammunition.
- Fight Isolation. When we are cornered, we are isolated. When we are isolated, we are
vunerableand when we are vunerable, we are suseptableto whatever our enemy wants us to believe. Some of the most powerful things you can do, when you are able, is be with people.