Facing Fear (Part 1)

When fear shapes our lives, safety becomes our god.~~Max Lucado.

We have all experienced it.  Some of us have been paralyzed by it.  Some of us still are.  It can take hold of your life and control everything you do…or don’t do.  It can hinder you from reaching your full potential and keep you from the purpose God has in mind for you.  Although every Christian is prone to fear, if Satan is using it to keep you in chains so you will not be effective for Christ, you need to realize you hold the key to be freed from those chains.

But is fear always bad?  There are different kinds of fear, and some are actually beneficial.  Let’s explore a few.

The first kind of fear we will take a look at is a natural, healthy fear God gives any creation that breathes for protection.  People, animals and even bugs have a natural fear.  If you have ever watched a show about nature, it is quite evident when an animal is being pursued by a predator.  The natural fear God puts in that animal is essential for survival.  Just for an example, if a gazelle just went out grazing with no fear at all when a lion approached, he wouldn’t be grazing for long.  And if you didn’t have a good dose of fear yourself of that same lion, chances are you would be a fast-food dinner.  Face it, a lot of people who do not have a good dose of healthy fear end up dying doing things we more fearful creatures wouldn’t do, like going 120 miles per hour around a tight curve.  Or climbing Mount Everest.  No thank you.  My fear has served me well in those situations.

The problem is that the devil will take that natural, healthy fear and twist it into something unhealthy.  Let’s say you have a fear of flying.  Yes, flying can be dangerous because your fate is totally out of your hands (but isn’t it always?).  We want to have total control over what happens to us, and when we can’t, fear creeps in.  You can get on an airplane and totally put your trust in God, or you can get on the airplane and totally give in to the fear Satan wants you to experience and have a panic attack and be white knuckled the whole way.  That kind of fear is unhealthy because it is the opposite of faith.  Your fate is always in God’s hands, and you are indestructible until God decides to take you home.

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