“Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strength you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand”. Isaiah 41:10
Got fear? Got discouragement? Got Stress? Tracie Miles book Stress-less Living in the introduction asks have you been feeling frustrated, fatigued, frazzled, overworked, overloaded, overwhelmed, or over-committed. Yes, yes, and yes.
God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and discipline (sound mind) 2 Timothy 1:7 I feel that fear and discouragement are tools used by Satan to separate me from God, to make me question my daily sanity. Discouragement can lead to depression, lack of peace. I saw a sign in Oklahoma “Worry is sin in disguise.” How true is that when I am full of worry, fear, and discouragement, I am not trusting in God.
My ministry at my church is Freedom In Christ. We use Neil Anderson’s booklet the Steps to Freedom to pray with hurting women. In the booklet, there is a section called Overcoming Fear. Dr. Anderson stated, “Fear is a God-given natural response when our physical or psychological safety is threatened. Courage is not the absence of fear, but it is living by faith and doing what is right in the face of illegitimate fear objects. The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom and the only fear that can overcome all other fears.”
I have had many fears over the years. I am sixty years old, and I had a fear of growing old. I have chronic pain and I had a fear that my pain would never be relieved. I had a fear of addiction, I do not drink because I have a fear that I could become an alcoholic as my father was. I feared loss, that my son’s would die and I would not be able to handle the pain. I feared divorce, first that I would never be able to divorce my husband and find Mr. Right and then fear that I could not save my marriage and I would be judged thus I feared being a failure as a wife, mom, and member of society.
Those fears were irrational fears. My fear of pain is that my pain will not respond to medication, I will always be in pain. When I analyze my thoughts, my pain is controlled and even though pain is my constant companion, I have God and his grace is sufficient to meet my needs. My fear of addiction did turn from alcoholism to food addiction. Fear was controlling me when I was 233 pounds in October, 2011. My thoughts were I will be never be in control of what I eat. The truth was that I can record my food, stay away from my trigger foods, that I need to eat to live but I do not need to live to eat. God called me to be a temple of the Holy Spirit not a Cathedral. I have lost from 233 to my current weight of 140. I decided to stay and fight for my marriage, I discovered my husband is Mr. Right. My fear of failure is irrational my grandmother prayed me through nursing school and so I have my nursing degree. I have been successful in my career as a nurse.
So what lies have you been believing? What is the root of your fear? What areas of your life are full of stress? As Tracie Miles said in Chapter 1, “overwhelming stress is as much an illness in our soul, as cancer is to our body.” She then stated, “much of her stress was rooted in trying to control circumstances that she had no control over.” I keep learning this lesson with my adult children, a lie I have believed is that they are too busy for me, or I have the irrational fear that something will happen to them. When these fears overwhelm me, my stress goes up. I am not looking to God, I am looking to how “I” can solve the problem. Emotions come into play such as jealousy. Tracie said in Chapter 1, “You are the only one who has authority over your attitude, your joy, and, yes, even your level of stress.” For me, God is the root of peace. God is the ultimate stress reliever.
Father God, your word says don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strength you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand”. Isaiah 41:10 I need to feel your presence, I renounce my fear, my worry, my discouragement because these negative feelings separate me from you. Today Lord I stand on the promise that the good work you began in me you will complete, that your grace is sufficient to meet my needs, that nothing can separate me form your love. Amen
Oh to be held by his victorious right hand. Blessings….Diana