In part one of our article on fear, we acknowledged that we do have an emotion called fear. However, when that emotion starts to negatively influence how we think, feel and act, we should pay attention. When this emotion seeks to take us outside the parameters of God’s will and word, we must take action against the spirit of fear. Fear should not rule our lives.
1 Timothy 1:7: “for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”
From this scripture, we see three tools that help us to confront and overcome fear:
1. God has given you power
Recognize and walk in your authority over fear. You have power from God! As believers in Christ, we have resident authority. The challenge is that we sometimes don’t identify with our authority as believers. We forget that we have dominion according to Genesis 1:26! And everything that the first Adam when he sinned, is restored in the death and resurrection of Jesus. Romans 5:18-19. Even if you don't consider yourself a super saint, (which none of us are) we are made righteous through Christ’s work on the cross. This means we also need to walk in and exercise our God given authority, and use the tools and weapons that come with that authority. Knowing who you are and walking in it, makes you a threat to the enemy. Take dominion over fear. It is under your feet!
2. The power of love
Recognize the power of love. Perfect love casts out all fear. Lay down fear as you walk in the love of God. 1 John 4:18 tells us “There is no fear in love, but perfect love cast out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.”
When you come into the knowledge of God’s love, it dispels fear. Knowing and experiencing the unconditional love of God will start to cause you to walk in confidence and settledness - not fear. When you allow yourself to be perfected in love it casts out all fear. This may mean for some of us that we need to love ourselves enough to build up the courage to remove ourselves from an abuse environment. While this is no easy task, it is important to find someone who can help you to get out of harm’s way. You deserve it! For others, it may be that you will have to love someone enough to stop enabling fear and doubt in them.
3. We have a Sound Mind and Self Control
Recognize that keeping your mind renewed in the word will help you control your reaction to fear. Knowing the word will remind you of what God has said about our identity, which will cause us to have the God response to fear. We will be calm and not flustered by fear when our minds are renewed in the word.
I had to learn to renew my mind over the years. There’s a lot that goes on between our two ears! I had to speak the word of God to myself and meditate upon the word so that I could shed the old mindset and take on the mind of Christ as it relates to fear. Now, when I say meditate, what I mean by this is the biblical method of meditation. After studying a verse or two from the word, take some time to think on it, ponder it, see how it applies to your lives and then take action on the word. This process allows for the renewing of the mind to take place because the word becomes a part of us as we spend time hearing, musing, walking it out. When the word is given the opportunity to take root in our lives it is much easier to walk in self control.
In this particular discussion on fear let’s see how this applies. When we come into situations that invoke fear, the Holy Spirit and the word of God that is in us comes to the fore to remind us that this is not from God. With this knowledge we can make a decision to stand against fear. We can then determine what our reaction will be. We will be reminded that we have the authority to cast down every vain imagination. Replace the “fear” thought with another thought that is opposite of that fear and one that is in alignment with the word. When our minds are being constantly renewed, we make a decision to daily lay down fear and daily walk in love.
Cast It Out Then Walk It Out
Cast it out:
Come out of agreement with the spirit of fear whenever you find yourself being overcome by worry, panic attacks, stress, anxiety, the jitters or excessive nervousness. Do not give place to that spirit of fear. Reject the very thought.
Walk it out:
Apply the scriptures to your life. Meditate on the word, then be and do what the word says. Replace fear with power, lover and a sound mind.