See From Fear to Faith – Part I – https://perfectjoyministries.wordpress.com/2012/10/04/from-fear-to-faith/
1. One thing to consider about fear is that often, we are not afraid of the final outcome, we are more afraid of the process. We know from experience that in five or ten years, this trial will have been overcome, and we will be stronger, wiser, and maybe even thankful at that point. However, right now, while we are suffering, joy and thanksgiving isn’t often our first response. We know that the last step we took was painful, and we anticipate that the next step will be as well. No one enjoys being in pain. However, our perspective and our attitude will truly determine how the experience plays out, while we are deep in the midst of it.
Because life is full of trials and struggles, if we continue with the responses and attitudes that come naturally, we will spend most of our lives in frustration and despair, just waiting for things to get better. On the other hand, if we find the solution to victorious living, in spite of circumstances, it will change our lives! We must live with our eyes focused above on the Author of peace and joy, instead of on what is going on around us. His perfect love will cast out our fears!
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. James 1:2-3
In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 1:6-7
There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 1 John 4:18
2. We may find that we have complete faith in God carrying us, but we fear what He may choose to carry us through. We want to be in control. We want to know “the plan.” If God wants us to go through a particular thing, we are fine with that, but we’d like to know in advance so that we can structure it to fit our schedule. We always have to have a “plan B,” just in case God forgets something. It’s scary to let God truly have His will and way in our lives.
We have all heard the saying, “let go and let God.” However, do we really understand what that means? As long as we retain our hold on our burdens, God cannot take them. We often go to God, dragging our troubles with us, but instead of leaving them at His feet, we drag them away with us. Even if we do manage to release our death-grip on them and walk away, we often run back to grab them, before we allow them out of our sight. We get upset that God isn’t fixing things or making our fears and frustrations go away, but at the same time, we cannot even see God, due to the bulk we insist on holding. We need to practice “hands-free” living.
Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved. Psalm 55:22
3. Sometimes we are so focused on the fears that we never even work on building the faith. A precious promise we can find that is He will give us perfect peace if we stay focused on Him. This is not a maybe He will. It is He will! Looking to Him is what builds our faith. Like Peter on the waves, we can look at that which surrounds us and begin to sink or we can keep our eyes fastened to Him and find that we are walking on that which we never thought we’d be able to walk on.
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Isaiah 26:3
The more we dwell on our circumstances and our unmet desires, the weaker our faith will become. We need to redirect our time and energy to thinking on those things that will increase our understanding of Who God is, which will increase our faith and trust in Him.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:6-9
4. His grace is for today. We often fear what we think is the worst thing that could ever happen and say, “I would never be able to go through that.” Not only is this focusing on fear instead of faith, it also shows a lack of our understanding of grace. Right now, this moment, we are not given grace for our worst fears. But should our worst fears come to pass, grace will be given in abundance and we will find that we can experience a peace that truly passes all understanding. We will discover that God is enough. We will learn first-hand that “________ may happen, but. . . GOD.”
Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. Matthew 6:34
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. 2 Corinthians 9:8
Is God’s Grace Truly Sufficient? – https://perfectjoyministries.wordpress.com/2013/06/16/is-gods-grace-truly-sufficient/
5. The greatest worriers can become the greatest warriors. Why? Because if we would but learn that “if we know how to worry, we know how to pray,” we would be a force to be reckoned with. If every fear was turned into a prayer or even a praise offering, the forces of hell would tremble. Instead of being in bondage to fear, we would use that awareness and sensitivity to become intercessors and worshippers. Our communications with God would make a heavy impact in the unseen spiritual realm.
Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. Philippians 4:6
Original material by Melissa J Carswell, MA, BCCC, Holly M. Besser. Perfect Joy Ministries ©2013. May not be used or re-printed without permission. bsbp35p06-20-13