My wife is afraid of crossing the street. It’s not a paralyzing fear, as if she’s frozen on the corner, afraid to take a step. It’s a fear of the unknown and unseen car secretly lurking around the corner, waiting for her to appear so it can run her over. Basically, she’s afraid of getting run over.
I can’t tell you how many times she has increased the pace while crossing the street with me, and there is no car to be seen. I laugh at her every time, and most of the time, she even laughs at herself. I even run out ahead sometimes like a car is coming. She loves that one.
Obviously, this isn’t a crisis for my wife. But it does speak to a more profound fear we all have—the fear of the unknown.
As we head into a new year, we face three hundred and sixty-five days of the unknown. This can cause a lot of people to experience anxiety, panic, and cold hard fear. We don’t know the future, but we wish we did.
The question is, what are you going to choose for your future? Are you going to choose to live in fear, afraid to take a step into the future? Or are you going to choose faith by stepping into the unknown and trusting in a God who does know?
When it comes to fear, God says, “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10)
Here are three things you should know about fear and why faith is better.
You don’t need to fear because God is always with you.
Some of the most fearful times in life are when you feel alone. Especially in dark times. But God gives us a command to “Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the lord your God is with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9)
Fear loses its grip when you seek God.
Have you ever noticed how fear and worry seem to dominate our minds? We can think of the worst-case scenario in a matter of seconds, and then we mull it over and over in our minds until the fear becomes overwhelming.
The quickest way to get fear out of your mind is to put God into it. The Bible says, “I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.” (Psalm 34:4). Fear can’t grip where God already has his hand.
The spirit of fear is not from God.
The Bible says, “God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
God’s Spirit doesn’t make you afraid. On the contrary, he gives you the power to overcome the mind tricks of the enemy. He helps you to discipline your thoughts and focus on faith. All the while knowing that God loves you.
Fear wants nothing more than to keep you from moving into all God has for you. But that’s not what God wants. He wants you to walk in his power. Full of faith instead of fear.
It’s the gift Jesus left us with when he said, “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” (John 14:27)