“There’s nothing to fear but fear itself.”
World English Dictionary
1. a feeling of distress, apprehension, or alarm caused by impending danger, pain, etc
2. a cause of this feeling
3. awe; reverence: fear of God
4. concern; anxiety
5. possibility; chance: there is no fear of that happening
6. for fear of , for fear that , for fear lest to forestall or avoid
7. no fear certainly not
8. put the fear of God into to frighten
9. to be afraid (to do something) or of (a person or thing); dread
10. to revere; respect
11. to be sorry: used to lessen the effect of an unpleasant statement: I fear that you have not won
12. to feel anxiety about something
13. an archaic word for frighten
Most of us don’t need to be reminded of the definition. We know it well. We live in it far too often.
This generation has heard the words “terrorism” and “war” far more than I ever did. Maybe I was naive, but I think the only thing I feared as a child was the idea of dying and not going to heaven–until I became a believer.
It’s not coincidence that when my thoughts recently headed down the “What if'” path, I was awakened to truth by a song. “His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me”!
“Don’t fear those who kill the body but are not able to kill the soul; rather, fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Aren’t two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them falls to the ground without your Father’s consent. 30 But even the hairs of your head have all been counted.”
I’ve been writing in my One Thousand Gifts journal, and it has become increasingly obvious to me that in the process of keeping my focus on the magnitude of things I am grateful for, my fear turns to faith.
In this statement, “my fear turns to faith”, I am not denying the necessity of God-given “healthy fear”.
Just because I can say with confidence that God’s peace can consume us even in the midst of our fear, doesn’t mean that I’m saying, as some would assume, that we should never be afraid or we are showing a lack of faith. What that statement is suggesting is that our greatest fear should be that fear would consume us…
The grip that fear can have on us is powerful, if we allow it to control our thoughts and actions. We often talk about “walking by faith, not by sight” and for me it means that even when I don’t understand the “Why?” I can CHOOSE to embrace the “What now?” Whether I’m fearful over something that might happen, or something that has already happened, will I choose to look to my Heavenly Father for comfort and peace, or will I choose to walk in fear of the unknown.
One of the statements my husband says often when talking to people seeking God, or new in their faith is, “You don’t have to check your intellect at the door. God gave you a mind so that you can learn, study, and discover the truth for yourself.”
Faith is not naivety, but a conscious decision to believe in the TRUTH of God’s promises. Those truths will set us free from the bondage of fear.
The world events unfolding only remind us that this is a fallen world. There will never be world peace until Jesus returns. The good news is that we can KNOW peace. Peace is not the absence of conflict, it’s the presence of God. HE is our peace. He can and will sustain us and give us peace when life gets difficult. It’s a calm assurance that God is in control. Evil will NOT reign.
I struggle because this topic is so broad–so complex, yet the simple truth for me is,
“My God is stronger, My God is greater!”
I LOVE this song by Chris Tomlin: