Fear: It is not your friend

Driving through my neighborhood this week, I noticed decorations for Halloween at various homes. At one home, there were all these scary looking creatures.

I began to think of how God wants us to be filled with faith and confidence, not fear as we walk through this world.

Recently, I talked to a number of people struggling with different fears. I can certainly relate. For years, I was a victim of a variety of fears.

Thankfully, God has set me free from the bondage fear brings.

Fear is defined as an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain or a threat. It is the feeling of anxiety about the outcome of something or the safety and well-being of someone.

One thing is for sure: Fear is tormenting. Fear is a thief and a robber of peace, joy and tranquility. I speak from experience.

There are many different kinds of fear. A few I have struggled with in the past were a fear of death, fear of germs, fear of failure and fear of the dark. I have found that many people struggle with the same fears that held me captive for years.

I was good at justifying my fear, telling myself that one could never be too cautious.

One day I heard the words, “Fear is doubt and unbelief, and doubt and unbelief is not trusting God. That is sin.”

At that moment, I knew I could no longer justify my fears. Whenever I was afraid, I began to acknowledge them as sin.

God graciously began to set me free, as I was faithful to repent and resist the temptation to walk in fear. Repentance is always our friend and is found on the path to freedom.

II Timothy 1:7 (NIV) reads, “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind.”

We can conclude from this passage that fear is a spirit, and it is not from God; therefore, it is not our friend.

There are times when I have simply said the words, “Fear, go. You are not my friend.” As long as we coddle our fears, they will hang around. We must deal ruthlessly with them if we want to get free.

Isaiah 41:10 (NIV) says, “So, do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

Many times, I have pictured myself holding God’s hand, and that gives me great courage.

Dismay is feelings of anxiety and consternation, usually by something unexpected. Have you ever had something unexpected happen? I have.

Proverbs 3:25 (NIV) tells us, “Be not afraid of sudden fear.”

Satan loves to make us feel scared, because then we are intimidated. Intimidation has one goal: to scare us from even engaging in the battle. Goliath used intimidation on David, but David did not bow to fear. He quickly strengthened himself by remembering how God helped him slay a bear and a lion.

I love David’s faith in response to intimidation. He told the bellowing giant he would strike him down, cut off his head and give his carcasses to the birds.

Those are faith-filled words.

Prior to a personal relationship with God, I was terrified of dying. I had trouble sleeping at night for fear I might die.

Once I accepted Jesus into my heart and repented of the fear, I was no longer afraid of dying.

Personally, knowing God is the start of overcoming fear. Tell God you want a personal relationship with him, and anytime fear shows up, tell it to go; it is not your friend.

The U.S. Navy has a slogan I think is a motto against any fears: “Life, liberty and the pursuit of all who threaten it.”

God wants us to enjoy life, our freedom and get rid of any fear that would threaten us. Fear is an enemy, not a friend. Do not let fear rob you anymore.

Kathleen is a Hill Country author, writer, speaker and podcaster. She is passionate about helping people bring God into their everyday life. She can be reached at [email protected]. To purchase her book, “Thriving Through Seasons of Grief,” or listen to her podcast, visit her website, www.kathleenmaxwellrambie.com