The Enemy Called Fear
A few years ago I had a dentist appointment with a new doctor that I had never been to before. She was specialized in treating patients with dental fear and was recommended by a work colleague of mine. It wasn't really about fear but more about going to a specialist who was an expert in her field. When I got to the dentist office I was asked to fill out a form since I was a new patient. As I was filling out the section for my personal details, there it was. The ultimate question. In big letters, it said "How would you rate your level of fear? From very little to insurmountably big." I paused for a moment as this feeling of discomfort crept in. My level of fear? I don't fear anything! I am a child of God, so there is absolutely nothing to be afraid of, right? Well, at least in theory that's right.
Unfortunately, we all have encountered that feeling of gripping anxiety, heart racing and thoughts running through our head. One of life's greatest enemies = fear. The enemy that comes in many different shapes and forms. That disguises himself so cleverly that sometimes it is even hard to detect that what we are dealing with is indeed fear. The fear of being mocked, not liked, unappreciated or not loved. Then there is the fear of failure, not living up to expectation or not achieving your dreams. The list goes on. But if you look at the things you could potentially be afraid of, how many things could you list that you are confident and sure of? In reality that list should be much longer because it only requires you to be absolutely sure and certain about one thing. One thing that will make all the other things fall in line: God's word. "I am writing this to you so that you may know that you have eternal life — you that believe in the Son of God. We have courage in God's presence because we are sure that he hears us if we ask him for anything that is according to his will. He hears us whenever we ask him; and since we know this is true, we know also that he gives us what we ask from him." 1 John 5:13-15 GNB
At this point, some might argue that believing in themselves should also be sufficient. But how much can you really trust yourself without a shadow of doubt? Haven't you ever been totally convinced of something and completely sure that nothing would ever change your mind? Then that moment came when you heard new facts, listened to a compelling argument that was contrary to your thoughts or had a sudden change of heart. And then there it was - your mind was changed. Furthermore, what about the other things you are so sure of that concern you: your career, your daily routines or hobbies? What if your job was taken away or your health was in jeopardy and suddenly you were incapable of doing your daily chores or pursuing your hobbies? Would you still believe in yourself or allow the fear of uncertainty take control?
Did you know that "fear not" is referenced 365 times in the bible? Enough times to encourage you every single day of the year. But what does that tell us? I'm convinced that from the beginning God knew that fear would be one of the greatest challenges we would battle throughout our existence. Therefore, be alert and don't give into fear. When it comes knocking, shut the door right back in its face. What is there to really fear after all? The people you might be afraid of, deal with the same fear you do. In other areas or even the same areas in their lives. Therefore, keep your eyes on the One who ensures us that we do not have anything to fear. "The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?" Psalms 27:1 NKJV