Dealing with Fear
It is a very uncertain world. About the only thing we can be sure of is uncertainty!
Fear faces us at every turn.
The stock market! My money is not sure!
My neighborhood is filled with crime!
Nuclear and biological weapons abound!
Traffic is a danger even driving to work!
Cancer, heart attack, stroke and all kinds of sickness!
Fear of flying!
Fear of relationships!
Fear of divorce!
Purpose of life?
Where will I spend eternity!
Am I alone?
I could go on and on. I do not want to create fear, just expose it. Now that I know I have fear how do I deal with it, live with it or overcome it!
1. When a child is fearful of going outside in the dark to take out the garbage what do you do. You don't tell the child there are no bears or lions or monsters out there. You simply say, "I will go with you!" That fearful child now is bold and dashes out the door into the dark, why? Because you are with them. Jesus said "I will be with you always". (Matthew 28:20 in the Holy Bible) The knowledge of the never changing, ever-present Jesus is enough to give us boldness in the face of living our lives in an uncertain world filled with untold dangers and struggles.
2. Have faith in God. Is this world out of control or does God have a knowledge and plan and purpose for all things. To ask 'why' is sometimes the wrong question. Perhaps the best way to view things is 'since' this has happened how will I respond. How will I live my life in this condition? How am I to pray? I will trust God and go forward in faith and love and peace.
3. Jesus was faced with hate, threats and even death, yet He went on doing the will of the Father. Many a missionary or follower of Jesus on a mission of God faces the same and must look at Jesus and His response for guidance and light. This is a study I challenge you to do, study how Jesus responded to hate, threats and death.
4. Don't run, face your fears Now! I remember when I first went to the Sunset Strip in Hollywood, California to minister there during the Hippie days in the 60's. One night I was witnessing in a dark alley to some young people dealing drugs. After a while some of the gang leaders came to me and said. "Should you come back here again we will kill you! We don't want you back." Fear swept over me. What do I do? How do I respond? God called me here, what do I do? I looked the gang in the eye and said "I will be back tomorrow night!" They replied, "We will kill you?" The next day I prayed much and knew that my entire future depended on this response to fear. I went back. The young men said to me "We said we would kill you, why did you come back?" I replied "God called me to the streets of Hollywood, I cannot give in to fear. Should I run from here I will run again and again. Jesus loves you". Needless to say they did not kill me but even became my friends and protector. Had I run then and not faced my fears I would never have made it around the world.
5. The story is told of Saint Frances of Assisi that as a young man he had grown up in a family of great wealth. Then he converted to follow Jesus. He was really trying to live in the true lifestyle of Jesus. However he hated the poor lepers covered in sores and pus. They were not like the fine clean people he had grown up around. This was a great conflict within him and a huge stumbling stone in his life. Then one day he was walking down the street and came face to face with a despised leper. He wanted to run away or turn away but mustering all the strength in him he ran to the sore covered leper and hugged him and then kissed him on the cheek! Saint Francis burst into tears and joy flooded him. "I'm free," he shouted out! And truly he was, because he has inspired the world with his love. But the real story is - him overcoming his fears.
6. I encourage you to face your fears. Ask Jesus to take them away. Know He is with you. Go and do His will. Trust God in the outcome. Praise God in All things.
God bless you,
Pilgrim followers of Jesus,
Arthur and Denise Blessitt