What Is Fear?
Before we start facing our fears, we have to know who our enemy is. What is fear?
Merriam-Webster defines fear as:
- an unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger
- an instance of this emotion; a state marked by this emotion
- anxious concern
- profound reverence and awe especially toward God
- reason for alarm
- to be afraid of, expect with alarm
- to have a reverential awe of God
Fear is both a noun and a verb. It’s the name of something we experience and it is an action that we take. Based on the definition, we realize that fear is not always a bad thing. It can protect us from danger or it can be a reference to the reverence we feel when we come in God’s presence.
But for the purposes of this series, we’re going to focus on “bad” fear. Oh, you know the kind, the kind that makes you hyperventilate when there’s nothing wrong, the fear that tells you that you can’t do something when you all the resources, ability and skills to do so, the fear that wants to lock you behind closed doors afraid to leave the house. That fear.
Before we go any further, take a minute (or a few) to think about the things you’re afraid of. Write them down.
If you’re like me, your fears will be a mix of big things and little things, of practical fears and impractical ones. You may even notice that you are afraid of things now that you weren’t afraid of a few months or years earlier. That’s because our fears change as we do. The experiences that we have to serve either to help us overcome our fears or to create new ones.
Why Get Rid of Fear?
‘They’re my fears.’ You may be thinking. ‘They only affect me and no one is being hurt. So why do I need to get rid of them?’
The impact of fear is greater than you think.
Fear affects our physical, mental and emotional health. A small fear in one area of our lives can quickly grow into a monstrosity that overshadows everything else. Fear holds us back from living our full, true identity in Christ.
Fear can limit the way we relate to the world around us and how we interact with our families. But it’s so sneaky we may not even realize that it’s there. The best way to fight your fear is to know what they are.
Challenge: What are your fears?