I struggle from time to time with anxiety which is one particular species of fear. Fears can easily overwhelm me; some warranted and some imagined. My heart thuds, my stomach drops, my hands fidget, and my thoughts race. The urge to run away grows stronger.
I fear for my children’s safety, often in crazy imaginative ways. My own inadequacy in the face of my responsibilities haunts me. I worry that I will do or say something stupid or hurtful. Or I fret that I already have.
I stress about what others will think of me, as if that is even an accurate commentary on who I actually am in Christ. Most of all, I’m terrified I won’t have what it takes to do what God calls me to do.
Maybe you can relate. How can we ever choose faith over fear when worries constantly assail us from all directions?
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First, let’s examine where fear comes from. It doesn’t come from God.
God’s spirit fills us with his power and perfect love that banishes all fear (1 Jn 4:18). When we are fearful, it is because we have forgotten God’s provision, protection, and equipping. We focus instead on our own limited resources and understanding. And anxiety wells up within us.
You might think courage is the opposite of fear, but it’s not. True courage only exists in the presence of fear, not in the absence of it.
Faith is the opposite of fear. Faith and fear cannot exist at the same time in the same mind. Which one you nourish will determine which grows stronger. And the stronger one will win.Courage is not the opposite of fear. Courage can only exist in the presence of fear. Faith is the opposite of fear. #faithoverfear #anxiety Click To Tweet
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What I’m trying to teach myself to remember when fear grips its icy fingers around my heart and my mind is that God is still on His throne. He has not abandoned me, even when I am unaware of His presence.
For too long, I have practiced feeding my fears—allowing my thoughts free reign to wander all over the land of the “what ifs” and imagined dangers. It has become my habit, as natural to me as breathing. I want to replace that habit with a new way of thinking.
I need to continually feed my faith. I need to feed it God’s Word—His promises of love to me. I need to feed it time alone with Him, soaking up His grace. I need to feed it worship music that gives me the words I can’t quite express for myself. I need to feed it transparent fellowship with others who share this journey.
But that doesn’t happen automatically. It’s a deliberate choice, an act of a STRONG WILL, not an accident. I commit to choosing faith not fear. What about you?
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Overcoming anxiety by choosing faith over fear is not easy, but it is possible and very rewarding! Especially when you have the right tools.
The most important tool is an active relationship with Jesus cultivated through studying the Bible and communicating with God (also called prayer).
If you need a little more help, please feel free to use the same methods I use to overcome my own anxiety. I made a handy little cheat sheet for you to easily remember the steps. Download yours today!In these uncertain times, I commit to choosing faith over fear. How about you? #faithoverfear #anxiety Click To Tweet
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What ideas do you have for choosing faith over fear?
Share your ideas in the comments below.