Fear is a real issue in our world today. Webster's dictionary defines fear as a feeling of anxiety and agitation caused by the presence or nearness of danger, evil and pain.
Everywhere we go, people are anxious and fearful about something. 2 Timothy 1:7 says, "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind." This verse makes it very clear that fear is a spirit and it is not from God.
There are certain types of fears that people have allowed to master their lives.
The fear of failure is the first fear I would like to address. Often people who have failed at something numerous times are afraid to step out and try again. Because of past failures, people develop in themselves a mentality of unworthiness.
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Failures are a part of life, but they do not have to mold your identity and determine your destiny. Just because you fail at something does not make you a failure. A failure is someone who simply quits.
When you step out and do something that you have never done before, it is normal to feel a little nervous or fearful. However, it is not normal to allow fear to control your life.
The second is the fear of lack. There are people every day who are concerned about the necessities of life. They wonder if they are going to have enough money to cover their expenses. This is definitely the case if a person has been laid off from work or does not have sufficient funds for retirement.
Dr. Bill Winston, founder and pastor of Living Word Christian Center in Forest Park, Ill., said, "Whatever you fear will become your master, it will govern you." When a person allows fear to govern them, it will paralyze and hinder them from fulfilling God's plan for their life.
Next is the fear of sickness. This fear often confronts those who have a certain sickness that runs through their family. They have a tendency to constantly worry about the same sickness coming upon them or other family members.
The last is the fear of tragedy. This hits home for most Americans especially with the recent shootings that have taken place over the past year. People are concerned about their safety. Past traumatic events lead people to naturally revert to fear and expect the worst to happen.
Keeping fear out of our lives, living one day at a time and letting tomorrow take care of itself will help us tremendously.
The Bible gives us the solution to overcoming fear and it is found in 1 John 4:18. It says, "There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love." The love that the Apostle John is referring to is God's love towards us. He makes it very clear that the key to overcoming fear is to know and understand how much God loves us.
The love of God gives us a sense of peace and security that empowers us to overcome our fears.
-- Marlando Jordan is associate pastor at Word of Faith Center in Kennewick. Questions and comments should be directed to editor Lucy Luginbill in care of the Tri-City Herald newsroom, 333 W. Canal Drive, Kennewick, WA 99336. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org.