Living Without Fear And Worry

Fear is natural!  The problem can be: does it control us or do we control fear?  If it controls us it can be damaging and very destructive.  Fear or worry can cause unhappiness or ill health.  Fear can cause a lack of self-esteem and self-respect.

Fear can be so devastating that the Bible addresses it a number of times.  1 John 4:18 – “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”  Fear many times keeps us from taking risks because we may be afraid of failing.

Fear is real and it can be debilitating. Though fear is real, we need not give in to it or allow it to misdirect our decisions.  Fear can inhibit us from not only using our talents and abilities, but also from reaching our full-potential.  And worse, we will be robbed of our peace and joy.  Once we identify fear in our lives, we can relegate it to its proper place: under the control of the Holy Spirit.  God does not want us to unreasonably fear: rather, He wants us to trust Him for everything we need.  Then we are free to pursue and fulfill our God-ordained purpose in life.

As I was writing: “What will it be like to live under Christ’s 1000 year reign”?  I wonder if we would no longer have fear or worry?  We would be given a new body able to live as many years as Methuselah and what life would be like.  I realized fear is a necessity but it must and can be controlled.  We all realize that positive fear keeps us alive.  We cannot jump off a 200 foot cliff and live.  It’s the negative fear and worrying that must be controlled.     Worrying for no apparent reason!

Luke 12:24 – 26 – “Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!   Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?   Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?”

Romans 8:15 – “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship.”  Is it too difficult to accept the promises that Christ made when telling us not to worry or be enslaved by fear?

Every year I must take a series of tests in order to keep my license to be an investment advisor.  Every three years I must take a three-hour test at the testing center, which I will be doing this December.  Fear of failing causes me to spend hours preparing.  If there was no concern or positive fear, what would the world be like?  Fear of punishment or shame, in I John above, motivates most people to do their best.  That fear can be a positive.  The fear that the Bible talks about is uncontrollable worry and fear.  Am I so worried about failing the test that I refuse to take it?  This kind of fear keeps us from reaching our full potential.  What kind of dreams have you had?  Is there a particular career that you would like to have pursued but never did because of the fear of failing or some other reason?  How many reasons did you come up with in order to not allow your dream to come true?  It isn’t too late if God is in it.

Let me share an experience that I was able to witness.  First, Scripture taught me that we can overcome fear and worry by listening to the Holy Spirit with spiritual ears, keeping everything in perspective and doing our best to remain coolheaded in the midst of madness.  It takes time.  It takes determination.  It takes practice.  But it works.  If we only knew what God had planned for us, because we failed to allow the Holy Spirit to guide us.  Anytime fear causes you to not try, because of fear of failing, seek the Holy Spirit’s council and see if this is something God wants you to do.

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