July 07, 2019 | Resources | Discussion by Josh Graves
For many of us, it’s impossible to completely let go of fear. Some level of fear is healthy right? I want my three year old to be afraid of touching the stove or running in the street. I want my ten year old to feel a little fear when the tone of my voice intentionally changes.
Fear isn’t inherently bad or evil or a sign of weakness. But when fear begins to dominate and control our imagination, we have to act. We have to push back and fight for our freedom and peace.
For those of us who have given our lives to Jesus, we come at fear from a different vantage point.
Look at these important passages in Scripture. These are healing words to me when I feel anxious or fearful.
- 2 Timothy 1:7—There is a power inside of you that will help you overcome that which seeks to oppress you. Name it. Believe it. Speak it.
- John 14:25-31—You can make a choice about what you do with fear. It’s coming. Be ready for it when it appears. Fear is allowed to knock on your front door. But it’s not allowed to move in and sleep on the couch.
- 1 John 4:18—How we feel about our children and grandchildren is a tiny glimpse of how God feels about us. Love is the anecdote to fear. So we name the things, people that cause us fear and we ask God to remove the fear and fill it with love. It’s really hard to be afraid of people you are praying for.
- Matthew 10:29-31—God is more for you than you are for you. Your view of God really matters.
- Do you see God as an Angry Judge?
- Do you see God as Distant Gandalf-wizerd type?
- Do you see God as a Hippy: Do-Whatever-You-Want?
- Do you see God as a Father/Mother who wants all their children to flourish and look like Jesus?
Over the next few weeks we are going to explore the specific features of fear and how the Christian faith can shape us into a more Jesus-like human.
But here are specific actions you can take:
- Invest in a good therapist or counselor or spiritual director.
- Pray and breathe without ceasing.
- Surround yourselves with people who speak life and hope.
- Learn to hunt for life-giving, resurrection stories. And share them.
- Don’t gossip and don’t associate with gossips. I’m serious. So much of gossip is perpetuating the fear culture we live in. Gossip is pornography of the mouth. “Like porn, gossip seeks a cheap thrill at someone else’s expense with zero commitment to said person,” Scott Sauls.
- Keep a gratitude list of all the amazing gifts that comprise your life. This is revolutionary! It works.
Fear is a tool of Satan and the principalities and powers of this world.
We will not live in fear because we believe love drives out fear.
We will not allow fear to control us because we believe Jesus has conquered all forms of evil, sin, disease, and death.
Will not succumb to the allure of fear because it seeks to rot us from the inside out.
Father, Son, Spirit, we commit to being people of truth, hope, and trust.
Come Lord Jesus. We can’t wait for the new heavens and new earth.