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 Corinthians 10:5
Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for You are with me. — Psalm 23:4
We get to choose how we’re going to respond and if we’re going to spend our whole lives trying to avoid something that is inevitable. ~ Jess
If you are afraid, friend, let me start by saying I’m so sorry. I really do get it. Fear has been savage in my adult life and I know what it’s like to have everything you hold dear threatened and what it’s like to be tormented by menacing fear.
As your sister in Christ, let me say to you, If your eyes are squeezed tight, open them. Look up. Jesus is with you. You can walk through this. You will be alright because this world is not our home; the Kingdom God is preparing for us is. Get up. Look up. And, let’s follow Jesus no matter the cost!
There’s something about fear that is so monstrous and wicked, like a peeping tom who doesn’t just sneak around, but slithers right in through the window to terrorize.
One of the insidious lies that permeates the Church even today is that if you are with Jesus you won’t feel fear. That just couldn’t be further from the truth. From the disciples in the storm who were freaking out even though Jesus was right there with them asleep in the boat, all the way down through time to you and me today facing different storms with God Himself indwelling our own bodies, fear is still a merciless beast. He’s still scrapping to knock us down, cause us to run, terrorize us into hiding.
What are we so afraid of? Failure, loss, pain, rejection, suffering. Those are nearly universal fears and the truth is that they’re real.
Fear of failure can take us out from even beginning, right? That one really gets me because it’s so stupid and yet we fall for it anyway. We’re going to fail. It’s unavoidable as human beings. But the good news is that we can’t fail God. I can’t fail God. You can’t fail God. He knows exactly what we’re made of, what we’re capable of (both good and bad), what our pasts are and what lies in the future.
Let go of fear of failure. You are going to fail in the future. ~ Jess
But what truly does happen after you’ve born the winds of suffering and challenge over years of faith is that you begin to see fear as a bully that is actually toothless. Not that you won’t face exactly what fear tells you, but that the fear only makes it harder. Once “the worst” has happened — friends have rejected you, you’ve faced persecution for your faith, you’ve accepted your limitations and the Holy Spirit’s limitless capability, you’ve lost comfort and been ok after all, and stared disapproval in the face and lived… it does get simpler (not necessarily easier). This is not to minimize the pain — not at all — but to say that as Christians, we become flintier and more dangerous to the enemy and his demons when we build our spiritual muscles by facing down fear, by doing it even when we feel afraid, and by knowing that in the end… God wins!.. We win.
Fears = enemies of God’s love and our belief in Him.
One of the coolest things about God and His Kingdom is that failure, being despised, being rejected, being too weak or too small or too young or too old only makes you more likely to be chosen by Him for a huge job way beyond anyone’s belief. In our weakness, God is evident. In our deficiency, His strength is crystal clear.
Our human inadequacies don’t disqualify us. ~ Jess
But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things — and the things that are not — to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before Him. — 1 Corinthians 1:27-30
We can say with confidence that the Lord God will come through for us. Not always today and not in every battle — the enemy still rules this earth for now. But, ultimately. And, we can have the temerity, the gall, the absolute cheek to stand up as women of bold faith and say, “even if He doesn’t” (Daniel 3:18). Because we know the end of the story.
We were never meant to play nice with our fears. Since God is love and light and in Him there is no darkness at all, we must fight any ideas that challenge the truth that He is good and we can trust Him. ~ Jess
Fear will not hold us back from obedience.
You are the girl for the job.
As sisters in Christ, let’s grab hands. Get up. Look up. And, let’s follow Jesus no matter the cost!
This week in your study:
- Watch the video for session four on our study home page. Take notes in your study guide on pages 75-83 and then stick around for the conversation with our OBS community!
- Grab your Bible and enjoy your personal study this week on pages 84-93.
- Join the conversations about the study and in our private Facebook group.
Scriptures this Week
2 Corinthians 10:5
1 Corinthians 1:27-30
Prayer for the Week
Oh Jesus, we love You! You know how crippling fear can be for us. We get afraid, we duck, we run, we hide. We cringe and fall back. Help us to stand up to fear. Help us to build the necessary spiritual muscles to face what we know to be true, to face what is inevitable, and to face the unknown that scares us. We need Your strength. We need to remember our hope in You, the promises in Your Word, and that we can trust You. Thank You, Lord. Amen.