Today, there are many people who talk about fear. Fear of the current global pandemic, fear of losing loved ones. For some it is fear of relapse into addiction, or, even fear of an abuser. Fear is a feeling that each one of us has felt at one time or another, in some form. As Christians, we know that the Bible tells us in John 14:7 that God has given us peace and to not be afraid. Yet, what does that really mean? When we are overtaken with fear, how do we find the peace to replace it with? What about the fears that aren’t so commonly spoken of? The fears of failure, disappointment, loneliness, rejection, or hurt? I know something of fear. As a survivor of abuse of many forms, a recovered alcoholic, and a person who has let many opportunities lie dormant for years due to fear of failure among other things, I am very familiar with the crippling grip fear can put on a life. It is something that as an imperfect human, we will constantly struggle with. However, I also know from experience how vastly that fear can be transformed into a peaceful reassurance.
In Psalm 91:15 the Bible says, “He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.” This is a reminder that we were never promised an easy life or a life without fear or pain. The Bible clearly states that we will in fact, experience all of these due to the fallen nature of man. It also states that God is going to be there with us during those times. God knows when we are going through difficulties and He is always there holding our hand. This is the peace which the previously mentioned verse refers to. In those times of fear it is important to call out to Him. It is only by calling out to God from a place of full surrender and trust that we can truly turn over our fears to Him for transformation.
As humans we like to feel like we are in control, especially when we are afraid. In Proverbs 19:21 the Bible tells us that there are many plans in a man’s heart but the counsel of the Lord will stand. In Proverbs 3:5-6 it says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” Trust in another is difficult, especially when we are already in a fearful state of mind. How wonderful it is to know that God, the creator of the universe, loves us so much that He has promised us time and time again throughout the Bible that He is there to hold and comfort us; that He has a plan for us that will bring good from the bad! There is nothing that will surprise God. Ever. He is all knowing, He even knows our thoughts before we do! As our loving Heavenly Father, He knows what we will face before we face it and has already prepared the way for us to endure our times of trouble. He has promised to never leave us or forsake us. In Ecclesiastes 3, the whole chapter speaks of the seasons of life and in verse 11 it says God has made everything beautiful in His time. When we are afraid, when that fear starts to creep in or when it rises suddenly, we must look to God. Remember the beautiful gift of salvation He gave us and the promises which we received from Him the moment we accepted Jesus Christ’s sacrifice for our sins. Begin thanking Him for all He has done and openly acknowledge your fears. Turn them over to Him in prayer and thank Him for the promises He has made us and for His never ending mercy and love. Even those uncommonly spoken of fears that are actually quite common in all of us will be calmed and replaced with God’s peace - the peace that passes all understanding.