In a world slowly being dominated and controlled by fear, fear has become a subject we must address. There are so many things happening around us that cause us to have fears. Wars and talks of new wars, uncontrolled devastating weather happening in places we’ve never seen before, foolishness in politics; not to mention the fact that there are things happening in our personal lives we have no control over. Fear can be, and in most cases is, lurking around in the dark places of our lives. The real question becomes then, with all this chaos how do we rid ourselves of these dark places and live free from fear? How do we find hope in the midst of hopelessness?
Not all fear is bad. There are two types of fear we deal with. The first type is what I will refer to as “false fear” the other, “respect.”
When I was a child, I believed there were monsters living under my bed and in my closet at night. It didn’t matter how much my mom or dad tried to convince me they were only in my mind. Nor did it matter how many times we would look under the bed or in the closet together. When Mom or Dad left the room and the lights went out, the monsters were real, and they were there waiting for me. Because of these fears, I took certain precautions to keep myself safe, and most importantly, alive. If I didn’t run and take a flying jump to get to my bed, the monster living there would surely grab my legs, drag me under the bed, and of course, kill me. If I didn’t keep the covers wrapped tightly around me, keep the nightlight on, or keep the closet door shut tight, the monster in my closet would most definitely creep from behind the slightly open door, and while I was sleeping, kill me.
While most of us have grown out of our childhood fears of the bogeyman under the bed or in the closet, many of us have gown into new and much more real fears. These fears are born from the fact that we understand many things happen in life that are beyond our control, and just like when we were children, we are desperately trying to come up with ways to protect ourselves. But in these moments of fear, doubt begins to take from us the one thing that is most precious in life, and that is hope. Without hope, we are barely living! As hope slips away we begin to question everything. “Why am I alive? What’s my purpose in life? Will things ever get any better than this? Why am I praying, and is God even real?” Hope is what helps us take in the next breath of air, keeps us putting nourishing food into our bellies, getting out of bed and putting on our clothes, going to our jobs, raising our children, making new friends, and most importantly, keeps us living for God. There is only one way to conquer fear, Truth! “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:32)
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. (Proverbs 9:10) Another humorous story from my childhood was when my brother and I would misbehave. My mom and dad had devised a plan to deal with us. If we were good, when my dad got home he would give us a candy bar he had picked up on his way from work. If we were bad, it was a spanking. Funny thing is, Dad didn’t even have to come in and ask Mom if we were good or bad that day. My brother and I would kneel on the couch and look out the picture window and watch for Dad to come home. If we were good, we ran to the door to collect our prize. If not, we would run upstairs to put on extra undies for the spanking. This fear my brother and I had of our father wasn’t due to his anger, it was due to his loving discipline which required following the rules. By following the rules, we learned respect!
There’s many of us out there today that want a big, loving teddy bear of a God, but don’t want to be taught respect. When we allow God to lovingly teach us respect for his Word, we learn to trust Him and His ways. When we apply His ways to our lives, we are set free from all fear and doubt. “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.“(John 8:36) If we are living with false fears, it’s because we lack respect or understanding of God’s Word. We need to allow God’s Word to take root in our hearts, but this is dependent upon us. “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholds himself, and goes his way, and straightway forgets what manner of man he was.“ (James 1:22-24) God wants to give us a life free from fear, but he needs us to trust Him. Trust for Him is born out of an understanding that God loves us and wants what’s best for us. We grow to this understanding through our love and respect for His word.
Ask Him to help you to fall in love with His word, if you will do this, you will finally experience the peace that passes all understanding.
I’m including a link to a book written by a christian author named Christina Li. Her book is entitled, “Defeat Fear Forever.” It was written from her own personal experiences causing her to live with fear. She finally came to a place in her life where she was able to face those fears, and best of all, hand them over to God. She has a wonderful testimony that will bless and equip you in your fight against fear. You can order her book from many different sources in a variety of formats: