We know fear does not come from God. And yet we all go through trials and difficulties that can cause us to fight fear.
The greatest trial of my life came with the death of our oldest daughter. In part one, I shared the first five of seven things that pulled me out of that place of dark confusion and back into a place of faith in the Living God and His plans for my life. (Click here to read part one.)
6. Don’t try to hide from your fears or pretend they aren’t there.
God wants you to bring all your feelings to Him, even the ones you wish you didn’t have. You may be wondering, He knows these things already. Why should I have to tell Him how I am feeling? Because you need to admit those things so you can give them to God and let Him work with you at being set free. Fear and anxiety come from the enemy of your soul. When you take these feelings to God, it is a way of affirming your trust in Him, regardless of how you feel. If you do this persistently, those tormenting feelings of fear will eventually lose their hold on you, and you will find your feelings lining up with faith.
7. Claim the promises of God, not based on how you feel, but based on the truth of what God says.
I have chosen to believe Romans 8:18, which tells me the sufferings of this present time cannot be compared with the glory that will be revealed in me. And I have written in the margin of one of my Bibles that I am not waiting for the glory of heaven, but I am looking for the power of His glory to be revealed in me while I am still here on this earth!
How about the promise of Jesus telling us He will never leave us or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5)? That is not a promise based on conditions. It is set and firm, no matter what we choose to do or not do. He is our constant companion and source of everything we need during this time. The question is not “Where is God?” The question is “Where am I?” I can walk out on Him very easily, and many of us do. We ignore Him, as though He is no longer with us. That is never the case. Guess who moved away? (Hint: it’s not God.)
What fears are you carrying right now? Are they things God would have you carry? Let me answer that for you. No, they are not. So are you willing to lay them down at the feet of Jesus, who is sitting on His throne as King, and leave them there so you can move forward in freedom?
There is freedom in surrender. I have experienced that in my life over and over again. It is like we are digging through the garbage, trying to survive, when God wants to hand us a steak. But we won’t take it because we don’t want to give up the garbage. Crazy, isn’t it? But that is what we do when we refuse to allow God to take something like our fears from us. He always replaces it with something better. If you say yes and hand over those fears, God can move in and begin to turn things around for you. (Hmm…that makes me think of another promise you can claim in Romans 8:28.)
There are some things we need to give to God for Him to do, but there are also things we can do ourselves. Right now you can speak to the mountain of fear in your life. Tell the lies behind that fear that you are going to believe the truth: God’s perfect love for you casts out all fear! (1 John 4:18)
I refuse to remain focused on the pain of my loss. I am determined to go forward, focused on who and what I still have. I have given God the shattered pieces of my life and am watching Him not only fix it, but make it into something even more beautiful than it was before. Only a God who specializes in miracles can do that!
I also refuse to live in fear of the “what ifs” of more loss. If that happens, I know that I know that I know God will give me the grace I need to get through it. Why waste my time on the darkness of fearing what will probably never happen? I would much rather live my life full of light and hope of a better tomorrow. You and I both are blessed with so much that has not been taken from us.
Fear and faith require the same emotion, which is belief in the unknown.
Which “unknown” are you going to believe in and act on? I recommend faith.
What promise in the Word of God are you standing on in faith? I would love to have you share it with me in the comments below.
Note: This was adapted from Laura’s book When Tragedy Strikes which will be available in bookstores everywhere early 2016. Click here for more information.