Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Overcoming Fears

 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.  John 14:27, (NIV)

When destructive fear is entrenched in our lives, we must remember that God is greater than all our fears. He desires to empower us to dismantle and demolish fear's strongholds in our lives.
Fear must be uprooted and the truth implanted so that we are freed not merely to survive but to thrive in a dangerous world.  John 8:32 "and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free." 
Some steps to overcoming crippling fears are:
·      Face Your Fears. Don't run from your fears. Standing up to them and facing them head-on is half the battle. II Corinthians 10:3-5 says For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the  against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ,)
·      Feel your fears. Don't try to silence them by getting busy in distracting activities.  Give yourself permission to feel the trembling, the anguish, and the terror.  By doing so, you will be able to begin identifying your fears and what's underneath them.
Putting descriptive words to both the feelings and beliefs underlying your fears will equip you to talk more honestly and openly about your fears with someone who cares, whether a professional or a friend.  Keeping a journal will help you focus your thoughts as you face your fears.  Once your thoughts, feelings, and beliefs are written out in front of you, it will allow you to be more objective with what is going on inside.
David was a man who honestly wrestled with his fears.  Psalm 55:4-8 - My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death assail me. Fear and trembling have beset me; horror has overwhelmed me. I said, "Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest-I would flee far away and stay in the desert; I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm."
When you journal, it is helpful to ask yourself questions that make you write out detailed answers. Don't ask questions that can be answered with one word. Here are some questions to get you started.
·         What am I afraid of right now?
·         What am I trying to avoid facing?
·         If I wasn’t afraid right now, what would I do differently?
·         What would have to change for me not to be afraid?
·         What am I afraid will happen in this situation?
·         What do I fear the other person will think of me?
·         What am I afraid will happen if my anxious thoughts are true? What’s the worst that could happen? And if that happens, then what? And if that happens, then what?
As you follow this process of honestly facing your fears, you will be better prepared to examine your findings and learn from your fears instead of running from them.
Scripture to claim:
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13 NIV

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