“. . . This is what the Lord says: Do not be afraid! Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.” ~ 2 Chronicles 20:15 (NLT)
I’ve already learned something new on this journey, it’s that fear doesn’t always look like fear. It can look like anxiety, depression, envy, insecurity, agitation, attention problems, and the list goes on. If it’s not a positive and encouraging thought or feeling, odds are it can be traced all the way back to fear.
This post was painfully birthed from last Friday’s post. Ironically, I was afraid to share it with you. This particular fear’s name is insecurity. It whispers, “What if you’re wrong?” I have to boldly say back, “I’m NOT wrong, but if I am, so what?” I have to pray through it, and ask the Holy Spirit to guard my heart and mind. Thankfully, He is faithful and longs to bless me with His peace.
I’ve spent quite a few years struggling with anxiety and depression. I would get so frustrated with medical professionals when they would tell me I had anxiety. I couldn’t see that I was fearful. If you were to ask me, I’d have told you that I wasn’t afraid of anything. People do not scare me, I’m not afraid to die, I’m not overly concerned about being abducted (although I know that the possibility is real), but I didn’t want to go out of my house. I did go out, but I did not want to. I’ve been known to mail a deposit to my bank, which was located less than a mile from my house – no kidding! The doctor said it was anxiety where I called it agitation. Which, in turn, agitated me, that he would think I was afraid. How insulting!!
It’s only been very recently, that the Lord granted me eyes to see that it, in fact, IS fear. I still can’t define exactly what it is that I fear about going out, but it is fear none-the-less. I put up a brave front, of someone who doesn’t really give a rat what anyone else thinks, but maybe deep down inside of myself, I do care, just a little. Maybe.
Fear is a LIE, and it’s from the enemy! It is sneaky and determined to break you down, to hold you back from your hopes and dreams. It knows better than to announce its presence outright, so it wears many different disguises in order to keep us confused and unfocused? But there is good news. We are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago (Ephesians 2:10), and we were not given a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind (2 Tim 1:7).
Do you have a goal, or dream, that you haven’t pursued because of fear? I want to urge you to search your heart and define that fear. Call it out, name it, then defeat it! It’s not easy and the fear won’t give up without a fight; but it’s going to be so worth it in the end. Leave a comment and let me know how I can pray for you; and please pray for me, so we can defeat this fiend together.
Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.
~ Isaiah 41:10 (NLT)