Hey there! Hope everybody’s doing well! As I write this I’m still in Kansas. So, grab a cuppa something warm and find a comfy place to relax so we can talk about fear. Yeah, I know. Not a fun subject. But we don’t need to fear it. I’m not sure I totally agree with FDR on that one! Fear is an emotion, it has a cause, it has a remedy. It’s not a huge psychological thing, usually. I know sometimes we may have things that are so big and so deep we need professional help. But our day-to-day little fears don’t need to torment us!
I want to start by saying that anger is often caused by fear – fear of losing something we have, or not getting something we want. So this can help with anger, as well!
Let’s go to my most recent example. My house wasn’t done, and my daughter couldn’t come. The easy emotional option was to get angry with the heat contractor, and maybe even God for allowing it to happen. But let’s look a little deeper. There was fear hidden in there in multiple places. Think about that for a minute and see if you can guess what they might have been. If you come up with some I missed, please leave me a comment!
The house wasn’t done. The bottom fear, largely unnoticed, was that I wouldn’t have a place to stay in time to start college. Initial panic was caused by that fear. I was afraid I would have to spend a lot of money on a hotel. I was afraid that I would lose the money I’d already put into the heating system, and would have to sue. I was afraid my other contractors would have to reschedule far into the future. I was afraid I would have to rent a storage unit and wouldn’t get it all moved back to the house, or unpacked, or everyone would tire of this ‘needy woman’. I was afraid I’d be living in an empty house for months. I was afraid I couldn’t handle what I’d gotten myself into… just those little unintelligible whispers that come to us, largely unrecognized, but when we stop and listen, we can hear them. These come from the enemy! He wants to steal our joy, kill our faith and destroy our peace.
How about Beth not coming? I was afraid of how long it would be before I’d see her again. I was afraid she’d be out the money for the plane ticket. Bottom line? I was afraid I couldn’t face the major life change without her emotional support. I was afraid I’d never get the house unpacked, that there would be no joy in it… I was projecting even more fear!
The remedy to fear is love. 1 John 4:18 says, “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.” (NKJV) I like this translation, because we are tormented by our fears. Fear can make us feel hopeless, helpless, angry, and can easily lead to pride and ultimately rebellion against God’s ways because we feel like He’s not doing what He’s ‘supposed’ to be doing for us. Fear is the opposite of trust that God really loves us and has it all under control on levels we can never understand, working for purposes out of our realm of comprehension. It’s the opposite of loving Him and knowing that He loves us completely and unconditionally. There’s freedom in knowing His love.
So, what did I do? First, I acknowledged the fear and disappointment. I had a good cry to let it go. While I was crying, I prayed. I purposely spoke words of love and trust to the Lord. See, emotions will come and go of their own accord, but we choose how we respond in them and to them. I chose to focus on God’s goodness, His mercy, faithfulness and love for me. He removed the fear and healed the disappointment. Moving day was a three-ring circus, and I was still in Kansas. But God took care of it all.
Maybe you’re dealing with fear and anger you can’t resolve. Go find a pastor or a priest. If you need more professional help, they can certainly help recommend someone. Maybe you just need to let someone lead you to the love of Jesus, give you some resources to learn about His love for you and help you to put your trust in Him instead of relying just on yourself. They would be happy to do that. They can connect you with other people who can help you learn about His love and how to stay connected with Him. Go for it. You have nothing to lose, and peaceful, joyful freedom to gain!