I wanted to share my thoughts on two different fears: fear of things in the world, and fear of our personal future, and how through faith we can try to overcome them. This topic has been on my mind recently both through fears I have had, and talking to a friend about a fear she has.
As I came to think about it I realised how prominent fear can become in our lives. It’s often something we can find hard to admit to having, or we recognise fears in our lives but keep them to ourselves as we feel others won’t be able to relate, or we don’t see them in ourselves but actually they’re ingrained in society. For example, products and politicians alike are often sold to us playing on secret fears that we may not realise we have. But as I’ve looked into it it’s been made clear to me how many times in the Bible we are told not to fear, and instead have trust in God and his power.
Fear is one of the ways the devil tries to take hold in our lives. In some ways it’s a relatively easy way into our lives with wars, persecution, violence, natural disasters and more, that are almost common place in the world. But we know that this fear doesn’t come from God, 2 Timothy 1:7 tells us, ‘For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind,’ so we can learn to stand against the fear faces us.
We are often told of the awesome power of God, but I think even for Christians, well for me anyway apologies if no-one else, there can be times when we struggle to trust in this power. But ultimately trusting in God’s power above all else can help us to be free from the fear of worldly things. One of my favourite passages in the Bible is Psalm 91, it was given to me as a word during a Soul Survivor event when I was finding things really tough, and it has so much that we can take hold of. In verse 1 we are told of the refuge that we can take in God through all things – ‘those who live in the shadow of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.’ Later in the passage we see direct links to fear, as verse 5 tells us, ‘Do not be afraid of terrors in the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day,’ clearly telling us that there is no need to fear as later we see in verse 11, ‘for he will order his angels to protect you wherever you go.’ For me that is a mind blowing prospect and when I think over that passage I am overwhelmed by the protection God provides us with and therefore that the fear is not necessary.
As well as this protection that we have in God, we also hold onto an amazing hope in Him through the death of Christ and the salvation we have. We can look forward to a time where ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain (Revelation 21:4)’. So whatever we face and the fears that we may have of things in the world there will be a point when we will be free from all fear and related things.
The second fear I wanted to share some thoughts on is our personal fear of what we will go on to do in the future. For me currently this involves where I will go to university, what course I will read, who I will meet and possibly form a relationship with. For others it may be looking for a job, their financial situation or relationships with family and/or friends.
We are told in the Bible that God has this all planned out for us, Jeremiah 29:11 says, ‘“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.”’ So not only does God have a plan for our lives, it’s a plan for the good, that will allow us to live and thrive, which I think is something we can hold onto instead of worrying about where we will go and what we will do.
When it comes to trusting in God’s plan over our lives a stumbling block can be a fear of being inadequate, the fear that we are not good enough to achieve certain things or be accepted or even that are not worthy of God’s plan. However we are all valued by God, as he created us and had this plan for our lives before we were even born – ‘For you created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made,’ (Psalm 139:13-14). I believe, and feel we are told in other verses throughout the Bible, that if the Father knit us together in our mother’s womb, then He wouldn’t leave us there, He goes before us and guides us in the plan that He has for us. So in the times when we fear things in our future, we can try to trust that in our hearts.
I realise it can be easy for me to sit and write that we should try not to have these fears. However, I fully accept that it’s not always simple. I myself have and still do sometimes struggle with fear, and would encourage you if you do to try and tell someone close, continue to pray through dark times, and read over some of these verses and let them sink into your heart. I’ll leave you with this verse that I think can provide strength if fear starts to take hold, ‘Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you (1 Peter 5:7).’
This blog was written by Emma, my sister, and my first family member to write on this blog! From the stories that she has told me recently of what’s going on in her life and in her walk with God, I can say with confidence that she is living out the things that she talks about in the post, and God is doing some incredible things in her life and in the lives of people around her. If her story has impacted you in any way, I know she would love to here from you. Write a comment below if you want to respond!
If you want to share what God has been doing in your life, or what he’s been speaking to you about recently, I would love to here from you! Send me a tweet or an email and I would love to give you a platform you share your story.