All of us experience fear at times. A healthy sense of caution can be good. It can even save our lives and keep us from making unwise decisions.
However, unhealthy fear can be crippling – it can stop us from trusting God with our circumstances, our futures and God makes it clear that we don't have to live that way.
In fact, He tells us to 'fear not' many times in His Word. Circumstances may say 'I've just lost my job; I have a family to provide for; I've just been diagnosed with an illness and the prognosis is not good. How can I be expected to 'fear not?''
Anyone who has been a Christian for long enough will know that it is not an easy option. And Jesus never said it would be. He said in John 16 verse 33, in this world you will have trouble, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.
Indeed, life for many often becomes tougher as we discover that we have a new enemy – the devil.
To fight fear, first check your love-life. Is your foundation in Christ based on His unconditional love for you? If it isn't, or is shaky, trusting and believing that God truly cares about you and will never leave you or forsake is vital. This truth needs to be firmly embedded in you.
Second, use the Word as your weapon. When circumstances dictate fear as your response, use the Word – speak them out loud to your circumstances. In the temptations of Jesus in Matthew 4 verses 1-11, notice He used the Word of God every single time to combat the assault of the devil. The devil's job is to suggest worst-case scenarios and discouragement. Our response has to be based on what God says about the situation, not Satan. Fear gives the devil access into our lives.
The only way to be victorious is to know what God said, and to know it well. James 4 verse 7 tells us to submit yourself, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. The more you meditate on God's Word, the stronger you will become. Remember, your circumstances may not change for a long time but having done all in the day of evil, continue to stand - Ephesians 6 verse 13.
Third, give God thanks. Give Him thanks, not for the circumstance, but through the circumstance. Praise Him for His goodness. You will confuse the devil and show God you trust Him. There's not much the devil can do to someone who trusts God. He's a defeated enemy who only gains power from us when we give it away to him in fear.
So, be encouraged, and make that leap today.