Article: Don’t Waste Your Fear
In my last article I shared with you some experiences that King David and the Apostle Paul had in dealing with fear and frustration. Today I would like to continue the theme and encourage you not to waste your fear. “Waste my fear? I don’t even want to be afraid in the first place…how can I waste fear?”
First let me acknowledge the physical and emotional reality of fear. Fear is a natural emotional response that human beings have toward a perceived threat. It sharpens our minds and quickens our bodies to either fight the threat or flee from it. However, overwhelming fear can also paralyze a person by causing them to retreat and emotionally implode.
You may have noticed in the Bible that it says many times, “Do not be afraid”. In fact, that phrase shows up 33 times in the New Testament alone. God isn’t being unreasonable when he tells us not to do something that seems to come so naturally, I believe he tells us not to be afraid for a reason…it’s because He is God, He cares for us, and He is there for us. In other words, we shouldn’t dwell in fear, but rather use it as an opportunity to draw closer to Him. Fear can lead us away from trusting in God when we let it take over and consume our thinking, but it can also drive us in a positive direction toward God when we ask Him for help amidst our dark times.
I would like you to consider the following ways in which fear might drive us to a closer relationship to God:
1. Fear humbles us and drives us to our knees in prayer. It takes humility to admit that our situations are above our heads and we need help from the Lord. When we cry out to Him, He hears our prayer and is faithful to answer. Psalm 34:15 says, "The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and his ears are attentive to their cry.” It has been said that there is no higher place than to be on your knees before the throne of God in prayer.
2. Fear drives us toward fellowship with friends, family and other believers as we search for answers and help in our distress. Hebrews 10:24-25 shows us a great example: "And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” We network together as a family in order to encourage, instruct and keep one another going.
3. Fear drives us toward the Word of God. Such sweet words of wisdom and courage can be found in the Bible. Millions turn to its pages every day for guidance, reassurance and blessing. Finding God in the pages of His word tells us that He has not let us go, and that He cares for us.
Even though difficult times seem to tear us down and bring darkness to an otherwise beautiful life, God stands ready to hear and respond to the cry of our hearts. Don’t waste your fear, allow it to drive you closer to the Lord and to those who love you. Let it bring you to a greater dependence and trust in who God is and what He has done for us.