“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
– 2 Timothy 1:7
I would not have characterized myself as fearful at almost any point in my life. I always thought of myself as logical—until I became aware of my own emotional limitations and weaknesses. As I honestly surveyed the garden plot of my soul, I found the fruit of seeds that had been planted in earlier seasons. Fruits of fear: of failure, of loneliness, of exposure, and on and on.
When I was very young, I was caught up in a web of lies, lies I told and lies others told to and about me. Over time, this created a mindset of insecurity that I would be discovered as false—and punished accordingly. I found myself telling lies of all sizes to cover the tracks of even innocent actions.
Fear attacked my honor.
As a teen and young adult, I was grew increasingly afraid of being alone, or more specifically—being unloved. My parents divorced early, and besides the occasional relationship for either one, they both were mostly alone. I wasn’t pursued by almost anyone as a friend or otherwise. I was always seeking love and wondering why I couldn’t find it.
Fear attacked my value.
When I got married earlier this year, while blissful to the hilt, I had a whole new host of fears to face. Starting over in a new place, leaving my family, finding a new job—what if no one wanted me? What if I wasn’t good enough to join the real world? I began experiencing something I had watched in others, but never known or understood myself: anxiety. Real anxiety—hyperventilating, crying at illogical moments, even small bouts of depression.
Fear attacked my sanity.
I realized that I no longer knew who I was. The characteristics which I felt had always defined me were seemingly missing. My confidence, my logic, the activities I enjoyed, all dissolved within the shell of my face-value.
Fear attacked my identity. BUT it did not overcome it.
God did not give me a spirit of fear; He gave me something much stronger: His Spirit. His Spirit continued to intercede for me when I didn’t know how to pray for myself. His Spirit continued to nudge me towards the people and places that would encourage me and would lead me into healing. His Spirit refused to give up on me. His Spirit loved me and loved me and loved me until I couldn’t hide behind fear anymore.
His Spirit fought for me, and won me back from my enemy.
If you’re facing fear today, for a moment or since you can remember, would you please pray this prayer with me? “Spirit of the Living God, I invite You to take root in my heart, to reveal and heal my wounds, to guard and direct my thoughts, and to have Your way in my life. Strengthen my faith in Your power so I may watch my enemy shrink before me. Open my eyes to Your love and open my heart to accept it. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Fear may attack you, but it cannot conquer God’s Spirit within you.