By Tonia Shroyer – Senior Pastor
Fear is rooted in lies the Devil tells us. When a lie is believed, it cracks open the door for fear to enter our hearts and minds.
We must not allow fear to push us around. Don’t put up with it! It’s a crippling spirit from the other kingdom that the Bible tells us is not from God.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline”. 2 Timothy 1:7 (NLT)
We need to take responsibility for our problems and stop blaming others for our misery. If we entertain fear consistently, we’ll develop multiple excuses to cover for it.
Stand against the wiles of the Devil. The Lord Jesus Christ did and so can we.
“Then Jesus said to [the devil], “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, “You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.” Then the devil left [Jesus], and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.” Matthew 4:10-11 ESV
Jesus tells us in Matthew 28:20 (NIV), “… and surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” He said in John 8:31-32 (ESV), “… If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
Graphic designed by Altmann
Anxiety, worry, intimidation, rejection and panic attacks are rooted in fear. It gets us to run away from things we should confront, prevents progress in every area of life and causes emotional as well as physical suffering.
“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.” 1 John 4:18 (KJV)
Norman Vincent Peale said, “When you are afraid, do the thing you are afraid of and soon you will lose your fear of it.”
Choose Faith Over Fear
When our daughter was small… she was timid and easily afraid. She wouldn’t speak up and tended to ignore anyone she didn’t know.
Family members would say that she was shy or was taking after the personality traits of other relatives. But we didn’t yield to those ideas. We kept clarity with the word of God.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 (NIV)
My husband Jeff and I made a deliberate decision to enroll Katie in piano lessons. Each year culminated with a performance at a college where they played a song on the baby grand piano in front of a packed auditorium.
She learned to prepare and to stand against fear. It taught her to control her mind and push through no matter what she felt like.
She went on that stage at five years old and played “The Muffin Man” with her feet dangling from the piano bench. I can still picture her smiling happily as she bowed with the crowd applauding.
Little did she know, she had chosen faith and not fear when faced with no option but to perform. When she had been backstage waiting, I told her what my flute teacher had told me for years – “It’s okay to be nervous but not afraid.”
The reality was this – she was afraid, but she made up her mind to push through and DO!
Face Your Fear
God’s family shouldn’t run from fear. We face it and go forward with courage or it will control us and lead us by emotions based on wrong thinking.
We use the Word of God to clear out confusion; then we’re able to identify choices and make deliberate decisions. Even though we may feel fear, we must refuse to live in fear.
Dale Carnegie said, “You can conquer almost any fear if you will only make up your mind to do so. For remember, fear doesn’t exist anywhere except in your mind.”
Fear is not from God. With the power of the Holy Spirit, we can resist it and choose not to let it affect our decisions, like David said in Psalms:
“Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” Psalms 23:4 (NIV)
Jesus Christ was focused on the Father and his will. He was a living example of what God told the prophet Jeremiah.
“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13 (NIV)
Watch Out for Red Flags
Fear is often born out of jealousy… afraid that we’ll be left out (heard of FOMO?) or that we’ll have to do without something we want and others have.
I often hear people talk about what they don’t have or how their life is not what they want it to be. They spend their time in anxiety and worry, trying to make something happen merely from their own planning.
“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.” Proverbs 16:9 (NIV)
If people try to tell you what to do and how to do it, your spiritual radar should wave a red flag. Do they live a godly life with profitable spiritual fruit? What comes out of their mouths?
Good wise counsel and recommendations come from people whose mouths are subject to their hearts and whose hearts are subject to the Word of God.
“A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” Luke 6:45 (NIV)
Fear is a mental distraction that we can’t afford to entertain. Let’s rebuke it and cast it aside.
What kind of useless things steal our time with the Lord and distract us from God’s presence? Our enemy wants to steal, kill and destroy. We mustn’t let him steal the seeds of the Word of God that we’ve sown into our hearts.
“The farmer sows the word. 15Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them. 16Others, like seed sown on rocky places, hear the word and at once receive it with joy. 17But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. 18Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word; 19but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful. 20Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop—some thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times what was sown.” Mark 4:14-20 (NIV)
God will lead us out of our fears if we are meek in our hearts and obedient to his word. Choices are all around us, but the most basic of spiritual choices is either faith or fear.
Have courage. Stand against fear in faith and see the promises of God explode in your life.
Never fear, Jesus is here!
Dive deeper with Pastor Tonia in this subject by watching her teaching Convinced – No Fear.