I am not a girl who loves scary movies. I have met people who love them. But I don’t like to be scared. I don’t like to see people hunted down and killed, even in make-believe film world. I like fairy tales, romance and comedy movies, and I’ll even go for a good drama or action flick, but I steer pretty clear from the horror genre.
So I am not sure what possessed me to watch a much discussed, truly scary movie one night when David and all of our kids were out. As I flipped through the channels, it just jumped out at me on the schedule of available entertainment. Perhaps I thought, maybe I’m missing something… maybe I should watch a well-known one like this just to see if I’ve wrongly judged these flicks and crossed them off my list without cause.
Toward the end, I was perched on the edge of the couch. At some point, I’d gotten up to retrieve the phone and kept it with me, just in case I heard someone break in who might come after me as I sat home all alone watching this crazy tale unfold. As scared as I was, I couldn’t seem to pry myself away. Instead, I called David and asked him to come home – at least two or three times as I sat glued to the TV. Because if he was there and anyone did break in — surely then I’d be safe! He finally came home and laughed at me and asked me what in the world I, of all people, was doing watching this scary movie!
Isn’t funny how quickly fear can cause rational thinking to go out the door! Today, I want to talk about fear and how it causes us to act in ways that were we to stop and think about it, we would realize are unwise and unwarranted. Not in reference to the phobia type or movie related fears, but in the places I think fear causes us to make the most mistakes and act in ways that we don’t recognize the root of our actions. I want to talk about fear in regard to our dreams and goals and the promises of God for our lives.
I used to struggle big time with this kind of fear! I have journaled my prayers and the whispers of the Holy Spirit for years. I do my best to live surrendered and stay on God’s path for my life as I follow his guiding words shared with me during this special time together as well as the other whispers and promptings of the spirit on my journey of life. Yet fear was the thing that tripped me up the most from walking in the spirit and reaching my destiny in God’s ways and in His timing. It wasn’t until I went through a recovery class about six or seven years ago that I saw the correlation between fear and insecurity and the spiraling worry it caused in my life and the havoc that wreaked in my world. Sometimes this stayed an inward struggle affecting my thought and home life and other times it caused me to try to steer things with others in the direction I thought they should go… taking matters into my hands – like God needed my help! I guarantee – He doesn’t!
That class for me brought me a big ah-ha moment that forever changed me as it led to my freedom in this area. That is, that God’s perfect love casts out fear, as it says in 1 John 4:18. We can truly trust in God’s love for us, his timing, his plans, and that our best possible outcomes always come when they unfold his way! He, in his love for us, won’t fail us, won’t let us down, won’t forget about us. No matter how many other people have been unfaithful with our hearts, God is eternally faithful!
On my path to awareness in this area, I also meditated on verses like 2 Timothy 1:7, which says, “God has not given me a spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” I love that verse still today. While I don’t struggle with fear as I once did, it still tries to rear its ugly head every so often and when it does, I show it the door with this verse and others like it!
If you struggle with spiraling thoughts, control issues, trying to steer things forward in your own ways, and stepping in and not waiting on God to move, chances are, fear is at the root! Surrender and doing things God’s way is a much more peaceful way to live. I urge you if this is where you find yourself today, to meditate on verses that speak of God’s love for you, as well as verses that speak of God’s perfect peace and verses that will help you win the battle against fear. The more God’s truths and love soak in and take root in your heart, the less fear will have an entrance.
Questions for Reflection:
1. Is there a time fear lead you to take matters into your own hands and not wait on God? How did it turn out?
2. What verses do you go to for reminders of God’s love for you and his plans for your life?
3. Do you have anyone you need to ask forgiveness from, where fear caused you to act in ways that put a wedge in your relationship or caused them harm? If so, I encourage you to go for it!
Copyright © 2014 by Amy O’Donnell. All Rights Reserved.