Recently I woke up in the wee hours of the morning thinking fearful thoughts. The night before, our family had watched a classic spy thriller. We had fun watching, but guess what I was thinking about when I woke up at 3:00 a.m.? I was counting how many people met an untimely end in the movie.
(Just what you want to be thinking about in the middle of the night.)
Somehow scenes that appeared fairly harmless while watching with my family grew more disturbing at 3:00 am. As the movie replayed in my mind, a vague uneasiness settled over me.
Know what helped me? My Bible.
I pulled out my Bible, and the Holy Spirit brought the Word to life as I read. Soon God’s greatness and love grew bigger in my mind than my restless anxiety. Peace returned. I lay back down and went to sleep.
Satan will pull on our fear strings any chance He gets.
The news we see every day on television is more chilling than my 1973 suspense flick: shootings, natural disasters, political turmoil, and terrorism. Dwelling on horrific news makes God’s love and power start to look smaller in our minds. We get the unsettling feeling that the world’s not as safe as we thought.
You and I both know worry and doubt can strike us at home, too. Even more powerful than the fear that arises from what we watch on our television and computer screens, worry over our personal lives and families can eat away our peace.
Yet we can overcome fear as we turn our eyes to God who is our loving guardian and hiding place.
Whatever we focus on grows bigger in our minds.
What’s your greatest fear? Illness? A car accident? Losing your job? Are you scared your kids will get in with the wrong crowd? Maybe the neighbors or people at the gym don’t really like you? Most of us have plenty to worry about, and the more we dwell on our worries, the bigger they grow.
How can we overcome fear? God’s Word offers wisdom:
As I read Isaiah 26:3-4, three steps to overcome fear with faith come to mind:
1. Stop Fear in its Tracks.
Stand on guard and recognize Satan’s attack on your mind through fear. Fear makes us forget God. Doesn’t that sound like what Satan wants? We forget God’s care for us. We focus on negative circumstances and expect bad outcomes. Our best bet is to stand guard and stop our thoughts when they start down the fear track.
2. Shift Your Focus
When fear creeps into our thoughts, we need to change our focus. Our verse tells us to stay our minds on God. How do we do that when fear knocks at the door? The only way I know is to start declaring God’s Word. Call to mind scripture verses that emphasize God’s nature. Copy them down, put them on sticky notes, put them on your phone, read them out loud, and memorize them. Do whatever it takes to put God at the forefront of your thoughts.
3. Choose Trust
Our Everlasting Rock is faithful and true, so let’s affirm our trust in Him. Declare His sovereign power over each situation you’re worried about. If you’re scared your project or presentation at work will fail, start praying for God’s help. Each time that fear comes to mind, pray. Affirm and declare that you trust He will help you.
Fear makes us forget God and His care for us. Faith focuses on His love and power. We can fight fear with faith when we shift our focus towards God. When we keep our thoughts fixed on God, he keeps our hearts at rest in Him.
Now it’s your turn: What fears are you facing? Does the news ever scare you? How do you choose faith?
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Need ideas on how to get more out of your quiet time? I wrote More of God: A Distracted Woman’s Guide to More Meaningful Quiet Times to help overwhelmed and distracted women recover a fresh sense of God’s presence, learn to hear His voice, and grow their prayer lives. Click on the image below for more info:
Photo Credit: Melika