A quick pearl of practical wisdom on how-to overcome fear. We know biblically we are called to “fear not,” but walking that out can be a challenge. This is a little trick I have found helpful and hope you will too.
Let me begin with the reminder that overshadowing this practical advice are the biblical guiding principles that:
- God is sovereign (emunah – faith that God is control)
- He is always with you; He never leaves you or forsakes you
- He will use all things for good
So the practical application I’m suggesting here is built on that foundation. The trick I’m sharing here isn’t one out of scripture, but it is something I have found helps me in my walk.
We have a tendency to “protect” ourselves internally from what we’re actually afraid of, and so I have found by forcing myself to look at the worst possible outcome helps me face whether the fear is rational or not, and how I would deal with that situation if it did occur. Often it’s feelings of helplessness that magnify our fear, so if we are able to empower ourself with solutions, that can go a long way to dispersing the fear.
Taking the time to look at the root of our concern can help us figure out which category it falls in and, as a result, how best to handle it. Here are some examples:
- If we determine the fear isn’t rational, that can help us dismiss it.
- Even if we view it as a real possibility, taking time to look at the blessings we will still have if the worst does occur can help us “right size” the concern.
- Another way of dealing with fears that are real possibilities is by looking at times in the past when the worst outcome has occurred and seeing how we successfully navigated it. Yes, it may have had a cost in the moment, but we weathered the storm and overcame.
- We may even determine the fear is a warning, which may mean we need to do something differently. For example, if I’m afraid I’ll get burned by touching the hot stove, I need to heed that warning.
As you take the time to face your fears, you will likely find there are patterns of thought (much like mine which I just shared above). Discovering your patterns and having methods for addressing each can be a powerful tool for addressing your concerns and overcoming your fear. This is a powerful tool of warfare because doing so removes a weakness the enemy could otherwise exploit. And it makes “fearing not” a lot simpler to do. 🙂
Let’s close with some fear not scriptures:
- Isaiah 35:4 (TLB) Encourage those who are afraid. Tell them, “Be strong, fear not, for your God is coming to destroy your enemies. He is coming to save you.”
- John 14:27 (TPT) “I leave the gift of peace with you—my peace. Not the kind of fragile peace given by the world, but my perfect peace. Don’t yield to fear or be troubled in your hearts—instead, be courageous!
- Joshua 1:9 (VOICE) This is My command: be strong and courageous. Never be afraid or discouraged because I am your God, the Eternal One, and I will remain with you wherever you go.
- Matthew 6:34 (VOICE) So do not worry about tomorrow. Let tomorrow worry about itself. Living faithfully is a large enough task for today.
- Isaiah 43:1 (TLB) But now the Lord who created you, O Israel, says: Don’t be afraid, for I have ransomed you; I have called you by name; you are mine.
- Psalm 23:4 (TPT) Lord, even when your path takes me through the valley of deepest darkness, fear will never conquer me, for you already have! You remain close to me and lead me through it all the way. Your authority is my strength and my peace. The comfort of your love takes away my fear. I’ll never be lonely, for you are near.
- Psalm 34:4 (TPT) Listen to my testimony: I cried to God in my distress and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears!