Thursday, March 14, 2013

Overcoming Fear Part 4 - Conclusion

In conclusion, I would like to share with you this simple acrostic for you to remember when experiencing fear in your life:

F – Focus on Christ, not your fears

Remember to keep your eyes focused on Christ. When you focus on the problem instead of Christ, it will be bigger than you can handle. When Peter took his eyes off Christ, he started to sink. He began focusing on the storm instead of on Christ.

E –Exercise your God-given power

Remember that we have power over our fears through Jesus Christ. "God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power..."

A –Arm yourself with the Word of God

Memorize and meditate on God’s Word so that when worry, fear and doubt creeps in; you are armed with the Word of God. Just as a soldier would not go into battle unarmed, we should not go into battle without being armed with the Word of God. 

R –Rest in the Arms of Christ 

Find peace and security by resting in the arms of Jesus. Deuteronomy 33:27, “The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them.”

Overcoming Fear - Part 1

Overcoming Fear - Part 2

Overcoming Fear - Part 3



Overcoming Fear Part 3 - Overcoming Fear

“but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”

a.      With Power

                                                              i.      God has all power

We have a powerful God. He is able to overcome any fear that we have.

Psalm 147:5, “Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite.”

Jeremiah 32:17, “Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee:”

                                                            ii.      The One who has all power is with us

Matthew 28:18, 20 “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth…and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

Hebrews 13:5, “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”

                                                          iii.      He gives us power

God has given us the power to the weary to help them through their trials.

Isaiah 40:29-31, “He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”

We must rely on God’s power not our own, as the disciples failed to do.

II Corinthians 4:7, “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.”

b.      With Love

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about the love Christ has for us. It is just so far beyond our comprehension.

Recently, I was reading the story of the rich young ruler and one of the verses jumped out at me.

Mark 10:17, “And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God. Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother. And he answered and said unto him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth. Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me. And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions.”

Jesus knew that the young man would not be willing to sacrifice his possessions to follow Him. The one thing the young man lacked, was loving God with all his heart. Jesus knowing this still chose to love him.

Jesus also chose to love Judas knowing that he would one day betray Him. I could not imagine this kind of love. If I knew someone was going to betray me, the last thing I would think of doing would be to love him.

I have also been pondering a great deal on the Crucifixion. I think we make this so much lesser than it really was. When you see pictures of Jesus after His resurrection, you see red marks on His hands from the nails. Jesus had large spikes driven through His hands. Those holes will be in His hands for all of eternity. I think that they will serve as a continually reminder of what Christ did for us.

How does love tie in with fear?

I John 4:18 answers this question, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.”

We can find peace and security in the great love that Christ has for us. Just as a child finds security in the arms of their parent, we can find security be resting in the arms of Christ.

c.      With Sound Mind

                        “Sound mind” here is referring to moderation and self-control. How does self-control tie 
                          in with fear?

I think that many times fear starts out with our mind. We start doubting and worrying, instead of turning to God in faith. By bringing every thought captive into the obedience of Christ, we can conquer our fears with the Lord’s strength.

II Corinthians 10:3, “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.”

By meditating on God’s Word, our thoughts will be turned to the Lord instead of our fears and worries. If you are struggling with fear, I would suggest to you to find some verses to memorize and meditate on.

Charles Spurgeon said, “The worst evils of life are those which do not exist except in our imagination. If we had no troubles but real troubles, we should not have a tenth part of our present sorrows.    

If we want the Word of God to have authority in our life, there is only one way - obey it. If we want the Holy Spirit to have authority in our life, there is only one way - Obey Him. If we always obey impulses of fear or doubt or resentment, what will have authority over our minds? Fear, and doubt and resentment.”  (Tom Marshall)

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Overcoming Fear Part 2 - The Source of Fear

1. Fear is Not of God 

                "for God hath not given us the spirit of fear"  

            Fear does not come from God. Repeatedly, throughout the Bible God tells His people to "fear not."
Genesis 15:1, “After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.”

Genesis 26:24, “And the LORD appeared unto him the same night, and said, I am the God of Abraham thy father: fear not, for I am with thee, and will bless thee, and multiply thy seed for my servant Abraham’s sake.

Genesis 21:17, “And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said unto her, What aileth thee, Hagar? fear not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is.”

Children of Israel
Deuteronomy 1:21, “Behold, the LORD thy God hath set the land before thee: go up and possess it, as the LORD God of thy fathers hath said unto thee; fear not, neither be discouraged.

Deuteronomy 20:3, “And shall say unto them, Hear, O Israel, ye approach this day unto battle against your enemies: let not your hearts faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them;”

Deuteronomy 31:6, “Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.”

Isaiah 41:14, Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the LORD, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.”

Isaiah 43:1, “But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.” 

Joshua 8:1, “And the LORD said unto Joshua, Fear not, neither be thou dismayed:”

Luke 1:13, “But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John.”


Luke 5:10, “And so was also James, and John, the sons of Zebedee, which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men.” 

Luke 12:4-7, “And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him. Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.” 

Revelation 1:17, “And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last:”

Jesus is the first and the last. He created all things and by Him all things exist. There is nothing that He cannot control. He controls every single circumstance in which we find ourselves. 

2. Fear is of the Devil

A. B. Simpson said, “Fear is born of Satan, and if we would only take time to think a moment, we would see that everything Satan says is founded upon a falsehood.”

I think the devil uses fear to keep us from accomplishing God’s will for our lives.

I once heard a story of a man who was called to the mission field. This man chose not to go because he was afraid of snakes. One day as his children were playing, two of his boys climbed under their trailer and found a nest of rattle snakes. The man quickly put the boys in the car to rush them to the hospital. As he was backing out of the driveway, he ran over his other child. His wife came out of the house seeing what had happened, dropped dead of a heart attack. The man lost his entire family because he tried to flee from his fear instead of obeying God. In the end, his fear ended up finding him.

Fear is just another tactic the devil uses in attempts to destroy us.  

3. Fear comes from within ourselves

"Fear is the passion of our nature which excites us to provide for our security, on the approach of evil."                        ~Rogers
Fear comes when we are looking to ourselves for security instead of to God. It comes when we are looking at God through our circumstance instead of looking at our circumstance through God. It is a lack of faith in God. It is a matter of looking to ourselves instead of to the Lord for help and strength.

The disciples did this when they were in the midst of the stormy sea. 

Matthew 8: 23-27, “And when he was entered into a ship, his disciples followed him. And, behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep. And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!”

They toiled on in their own strength before finally crying out to the Lord. So often, this characterizes us. The Lord is often our last resort when facing difficulties in our lives. Fear comes from our own hearts when we fail to put our faith in the Lord.                        

Elisabeth Elliot said, “Where does your security lie? Is God your refuge, your hiding place, your stronghold, your shepherd, your counselor, your friend, your redeemer, your Saviour, your guide? If He is, you don't need to search any further for security.”

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Overcoming Fear - Part 1 Introduction

I recently shared a devotional on fear with a ladies group. I thought I would post my notes from it on here. Hopefully, it will be a blessing and encouragement to you. 

II Timothy 1:7
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power,
and of love, and of a sound mind.”


            Glorianne Gibbs tell of a story:

“When my husband and I were just newly married we were sitting in our VW bug in the parking lot next to our apartment building that actually was an old, infrequently used church’s parking lot that, as apartment renters, we were allowed to use. We were just sitting there enjoying each other’s company and intensely talking, not noticing anything but each other as the twilight of a late October evening was settling in. it was a cold October, and we were pausing to warm up before making the long walk to our apartment. The side of the church facing us was windowless, and we were several hundred feet from the road and any passerby.

Suddenly our whole car shook and we looked out to see that a gang of about fifteen fierce looking older teenagers had appeared and surrounded our car. They kept circling the car and rocking it with more and more momentum until we were afraid that it would roll over. I was terrified! My husband could in no way get out of the car to confront them as they were armed with chains and knives and we were living close to where the Cleveland riots had occurred that past summer. Tempers and hostilities had not cooled as fast as the weather that year. We just held hands and prayed as they rocked our car and yelled at us! It was a horrible experience and I actually thought they were going to kill us. Then, just when I thought the car was definitely going over, they suddenly stopped, banged a chain once more on our roof and sauntered away across the parking lot.

When I think of fear, the first thing that comes to my mind is a child being afraid of the dark. This is probably one of the first fears that many people face. As a child, you probably experienced a number of fears. Children are generally much more open and willing to discuss their problems. However, as we grow older it seems like we have less of a tendency to really talk about our struggles.

I think that we have the attitude as adults we should be tough and not have any fears. I have often seen decals on vehicles that say, “No Fear.”  I think we are the “No fear” generation. This is just an attitude of pride – that we can first of all, handle our problems on own; and secondly, it is a denial of God for we are to have a healthy fear of Him.

 Some fears that you may be dealing with or have dealt with in the past:

·        Darkness
·        Sickness
·        Trials
·        Death
·        Personal or family safety
·        Of man/public speaking
·        Failure

Going on the mission field, I have many fears to face. Things are bad enough in our own country, yet even more so in most other countries. I have a decision to make as to whether I am going to let the fears control my life or trust God for the outcome. 

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Weighing the Cost

I had feelings of fear about the future...The devil kept on whispering, "It's all right now, but what about afterward? You are going to be very lonely"....And I turned to my God in a kind of desperation and said "Lord, what can I do? How can I go on to the end?" And He said, "None of them that trust in Me shall be desolate." That word has been with me ever since.

Amy Carmichael
Biography And Bibliography
On 'weighing the cost' of full time missionary work


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