“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. …There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love” (1 John 4:16, 18, NIV).
Love challenges us to doubt what we see and believe what is unseen. Fear, on the other hand, demands that we believe what we see and doubt the unseen One in whom we believe. We steward our faith well when we choose to believe God rather than listen to fear.
Fear wants to get into your mind and cause you to question all that God has said—things like, “What will happen to me?” or, “I can’t let go; it would fall apart,” confine us to the kingdom of self instead of the kingdom of God. You were not created to be in control. You were created to give God control.
Do not think that fear is a state of mind or attitude that can be willed away. It is a spirit, and it must be confronted spiritually.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” (2 Tim. 1:7, NKJV)
Fear is only as strong as we empower it to be. It is strengthened by the lies sprung from past hurts or offenses that, when not confronted, become strongholds in our minds. When you give in to fear, you are placing your faith in it instead of in God.
In order to combat the spirit of fear, you must take every thought captive in obedience to Christ. The enemy does not attack your mind lightly; therefore, you must be aggressive in protecting and renewing it. This is about more than passively studying Scriptures; it is about knowing and trusting a God who is good and faithful even in circumstances you don’t understand.
Are you letting fear keep you from relinquishing control of your life? Ask God to reveal His love that will cast out fear. Then pursue His Spirit and Word to begin the process of renewing your mind.
“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Cor. 10:4-5, NIV).
Adapted from Out of Control and Loving It! by Lisa Bevere.