3 Reasons You Shouldn’t Live in Fear
- Jennifer Heeren Crosswalk Contributing Writer
- 2016 9 Nov
I moved closer and closer until my toes hung over the edge of the airplane that was two miles in the air. My brain and stomach were swirling with fear’s very real physical symptoms. I wanted to turn back, not because I thought there was a major problem, but simply because my nerves were stirring.
I have similar feelings in everyday life when I want to try something new or even to speak my opinion if I’m afraid of rejection. I also tend to worry about my future or the world’s future.
Feelings of fear seem inevitable.
I have the opportunity to hear God’s Word often--at church, in my Bible, in devotional articles, on the radio and television, and even social media has memes and links that include Bible verses. The opportunity to hear God’s voice and guidance is everywhere.
So, why don’t I always feel confident that I’m following my God’s lead? The problem is with my heeding, not my hearing. The Word goes in and I get excited but I don’t always follow through. Why? Because of fear.
In Hebrews 3, it says, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion.” Fear and worry can harden my heart and keep me from heeding God’s voice. It also says that when this happens, my heart is going astray. My straying heart (or rather my fearful and worrying heart) keeps me from doing the good things I hear and want to do.
Fear and worry seems to always be a part of me. I fear what other people will say, do, or think as a consequence to my actions or speech. I fear for the future and therefore don’t want to take too many chances. I fear. I fear. I fear.
But… I can stop this constant whirring in my head!
I can put an end to this fearing madness by remembering these three things:
1. I have a great High Priest. His name is Jesus. He empathizes with my weaknesses. He knows my tendency toward fear and worry. He knew those tendencies before I was born. However, he also wants me to fight them. But he doesn’t want me to fight them with my own strength. He wants me to approach him daily for the grace and confidence that I need. He won’t scold me or say, “Buck up!” He will respond with mercy and grace that covers my fears (see Hebrews 4).
The more I fill myself up with the mercy and grace of my great High Priest, the less room they’ll be for fears and anxieties.
2. I also have an Advocate. Not just in heaven, but also within me. The Holy Spirit is better than near. He is within me. He is always there to guide me into God’s truth and He will always help me with the follow through that I need to accomplish things. Wisdom and truth from within pushes my worries to the side (see John 16).
The more I’m guided by wisdom and truth from within me, the less room they’ll be for any anxiety or fear.
3. Obeying God is a form of love. Helping other people is a form of love. Living a life that is full of loving deeds displays that I am indeed a child of God. God showed his love by doing—he sent his only Son into the world to die as a sacrifice for the sins of all mankind. Such love expels all fear. The key is to remember God’s abundant love and then obey him by showing love to people. Love conquers worry (see 1 John).
The more I tell of God’s immense love for mankind, the more I’ll remember that his love takes away fear.
When I show God’s love to people by doing good things for them, there will be less time for my worries. And if there’s less time for my worrying, than there’s more time for my action. Usually, just beginning something takes away most of my worries. Worry takes up a lot of my precious and fleeting time.
I can choose to spend so much time doing good that there’s not enough time left for fear, doubts, or worry.
When I jumped from that plane, I did it tandem which means an experienced instructor was with me the whole time. Each day, I also have an experienced Teacher with me. I can feel those anxious feelings and still act anyway.
Jennifer Heeren loves to write and wants to live in such a way that people are encouraged by her writing and her attitude. She loves to write devotional articles and stories that bring people hope and encouragement. Her cup is always at least half-full, even when circumstances aren’t ideal. She regularly contributes to Crosswalk.com. She lives near Atlanta, Georgia with her husband. Visit her at www.jenniferheeren.com.
Photo courtesy: Thinkstockphotos.com
Publication date: November 9, 2016