When Fear Takes Hold–3 Points To Remember

“But you, LORD, do not be far from me. You are my strength; come quickly to help me.”  Psalm 22:19

Photo: Renae Bowman

Photo: Renae Bowman

It seems fear has taken up residency in my life. It’s been spining and swirling all around me. It’s as palpable as my heartbeat. One moment I’m not concerned about a thing, the next, fear becomes my sidekick. I’m learning what it’s linked to and I know the giants I’m facing, but nonetheless, it has become a constant companion that I wish would just leave.
Have you been there?
Are you there now?
Fear can grip as strong as a bear hug. It holds on, takes control and is hard to shake. It may be for something relatively minor, or it may be for the biggest obstacle you have ever faced in your life. But it’s real. It’s there. It’s unavoidable.

I don’t like fear. I don’t like what it does to us. I don’t like the fallout from dealing with it. And mostly, I don’t like the solitude it operates in. The fact that it is just mine…and yours is just yours, and we can’t interchange them makes it difficult. What I feel and what you feel is singular—I can’t share your innermost feelings and you can’t with me. We’re on our own, if you will, to work it out and deal with it. I think that is the hardest part of this crazy emotion.

So what to do? How do we navigate this very emotion that makes up our being? Can I suggest 3 areas to explore—

You’re In GOOD Company—

We ALL face fears at times in our lives. You are not an island unto yourself in this realm. For those that say they don’t fear, I believe, just haven’t faced their giants yet. Don’t feel alone!
And Biblically speaking, let me be the first to tell you if you don’t know—the book is full of fearful people! From beginning to end, there are some fearful folk that make up the life and times of what God wants us to know about. The pages are steeped with people like you and me who have to deal with the one emotion that no one wants to. Fear is part of human nature. We need reminders sometimes that others have it and how others have faced it. (Luke 1:30, Matthew 9:8)

The RIGHT Prayer Helps—

It’s become such a cliché, hasn’t it? Just pray and your fear will go away. Well, no, no it doesn’t. If I’m keeping it real, that line just doesn’t float sometimes. I’ve been in the clutches of fear, have literally been on my knees in prayer, and when I stand back up again…guess what, it’s still there. Anyone else? Yet, I’ve come to realize, prayer doesn’t always take away, but it does always give.   It gives strength when you’re too weak. It gives understanding, when you’re confused. It gives will when you’re giving up. That is where prayer helps. Those are the prayers that make a difference. (Psalm 40:1-2)

Seek WISE Counsel—

Like in the book of Job, well meaning friends can give wrong advice. For example, have you ever heard it said, “Fear means your faith is weak?” Really? Man, that one is a bit hard for me to agree with. I just don’t see that as being biblical. May I suggest if you struggle with deep fears, and and you are being told that line, it may rise to the level of going beyond those friends. Maybe it’s time to reach out to someone who can actually help? Someone, who is rooted in the true Word and knows how to navigate human emotions. We often call out to God and ask why is He silent in our requests, yet two doors down He’s sent someone who can help. Sometimes, His answers to prayers take on the form of someone with a solution. Wise counsel, coupled with scripture, is both a God thing and a good thing. (Proverbs 12:15)

Listen, fear is a tricky subject—I get it. But somewhere along the line we have made it almost taboo to talk about in our faith circles. For some reason fear has become an evil four-lettered word meaning faithlessness. It has become associated with a lack of belief or a lack of trust of God. I disagree. To me, when that happens, I generally point to the scoreboard. I point to the greats we call saints and see how much of their lives were filled with fear. I see how our Redeemer was on His knees in His last days, asking His father to remove His fate. Do we then say Jesus had a lack of faith? Our Savior’s struggle alone shows us it’s not about the fear itself, it is about the trust and strength to get through.

I pray for you my friends. I pray if you’re struggling with fear right now you will see you’re not alone. I pray that your shouts to God return with strength that can only be described as heaven sent.  And I pray you find that one person who can step you through it.   Let’s find solace not in clichés but in what God offers as a result of our fear—His strength and His strength alone.

4 Replies

  1. Mimi Bradford

    Well said, Renae, “It’s not about the fear itself, it’s about the trust and strength to get through.” So true!

    1. It is, isn’t Mimi?!! Thank you. Blessings.

  2. Lori perez

    Just the word “fear” is hard for me. It makes me feel like I am not worthy of His love. Thank you for posting this. Needed this today.

    1. It’s just the opposite Lori…we are worthy of His love because we have fear. That is why He came. That is why He gave. He knew we needed a rescuer. Thank you for stopping by and thank you, thank you

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.