We are children of Adam and Eve, whose first act after they sinned was to hide in the bush while God walked by. Why? Because they were ashamed and afraid. Shame and fear are our two enemies as we seek to live for the Lord and walk in His ways.
We can quote, "God has not given me a spirit of fear" but that does not mean we don't have fear. In fact, in my 44 years of ministry experience, I have found that I am afraid and so are you.
You may protest and say, "Not me!" I would still beg to differ. If you insist you don't have fear, there are three possibilities:
- you may have conquered fear once and for all.
- you don't recognize the fear because it disguises itself.
- you have shrunk your world so that there are no surprises, so that tomorrow is like today -- and why did you do that? Because you are afraid you cannot handle the new day.
I doubt very much that you have mastered fear as described in #1 above, but if you have, pray for the rest of us.
If you need more convincing of the possibility you suffer from number 2, ask yourself why you don't go on a missions trip, learn a language, go back to school, or start a business -- or any other idea you have ever had that's new and different than what you are doing now. Within five minutes, you can think of all the reasons why those things are not good ideas. All those reasons are fear-based. If you don't have the money, you are really thinking, "I am afraid the money won't be there when I need it, so better not make the commitment to go (or do)."
And if you have settled into number 3, what is the purpose for your existence? Is it to do what you are currently doing every day for the rest of your life with minor variations? Is that living or existing?
Jesus said that we would know the truth and it would set us free. It's important to know where the fear is in your thinking so you can be free, that is, if you want to be free. Because to be free is to risk, and risk causes fear, and fear, well, then we are right back where we started at the beginning of this post, children of Adam and Eve, hiding with them in the Garden bush while God comes looking for us.