Breaking the Power of Fear.
In general, people appear to be most afraid of two things: the threat of pain or death, and the threat of social rejection or isolation.
In a 2005 Gallup poll, a national sample of adolescents between the ages of 13 and 15 were asked what they feared the most. The question was open ended and participants were able to say whatever they wanted. The most frequently cited fear (mentioned by 8% of the teens) was terrorism.
Their top ten fears were, in order: terrorist attacks, spiders, death, being a failure, war, heights, criminal or gang violence, being alone, the future, and nuclear war.
Further more according to Unicef our nation has the unhappiest children in the developed world, and the unhappiest adults in Europe according to World Helath Organisation.
Our culture has developed an almost consuming fear, of being left out, “not being in the incrowd” a fear of social shame.
Fear poses a real threat to us and we ignore it at our peril.
Fear is a virus; just like HIV, HCV, HCB etc.
I John 4: 15 - 19 All who confess that Jesus is the Son of God have God living in them, and they live in God. We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love.
God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the Day of Judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world.
Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love. We love each other because he loved us first.
The Message; version
1 John 4: 15 - 19 Everyone who confesses that Jesus is God’s Son participates continuously in an intimate relationship with God. We know it so well, we’ve embraced it heart and soul, this love that comes from God. To Love, to Be Loved
God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, so that we’re free of worry on Judgment Day—our standing in the world is identical with Christ’s. There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a fearful life—fear of death, fear of judgment—is one not yet fully formed in love. We, though, are going to love—love and be loved. First we were loved, now we love. He loved us first.
2 Timothy 1: For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
A Lion Chaser – Who Me!!!!!!?
2 Samuel 23:20 - 23 There was also Benaiah son of Jehoiada, a valiant warrior from Kabzeel. He did many heroic deeds, which included killing two champions of Moab. Another time, on a snowy day, he chased a lion down into a pit and killed it. Once, armed only with a club, he killed a great Egyptian warrior who was armed with a spear. Benaiah wrenched the spear from the Egyptian's hand and killed him with it. Deeds like these made Benaiah as famous as the Three mightiest warriors. He was more honoured than the other members of the Thirty, though he was not one of the Three. And David made him captain of his bodyguard.
Benaiah wasn’t a normal type of guy, normal people don’t chase lions.
I’m not a normal either and you’re not normal.
Christians are not normal people,
Normal people don’t change their world,
Normal people don’t make a difference.
Imagine the scene!!
What Lion do you need to chase?
What fear do you want to conquer?
Job, money, witness, ill health, an addiction, career, dream, write a book, use your God given gifts.
Write it out…
Believers should be Lion chasers.
1. LION CHASERS KNOW THAT THE “BIGGER” THEIR GOD IS THE “SMALLER “LIONS BECOME.
Is your God too small?
Daniel 6: 19 - 23.Very early the next morning, the king got up and hurried out to the lions' den. When he got there, he called out in anguish, "Daniel, servant of the living God! Was your God, whom you serve so faithfully, able to rescue you from the lions?"
Daniel answered, "Long live the king! My God sent his angel to shut the lions' mouths so that they would not hurt me, for I have been found innocent in his sight. And I have not wronged you, Your Majesty."
The king was overjoyed and ordered that Daniel be lifted from the den. Not a scratch was found on him, for he had trusted in his God.
Declare it: There is a difference between your God and My God!
Meditation: There is NO God like our GOD.
He is MY…..
2. LION CHASERS UNDERSTAND THAT PLAYING IT " SAFE " IS " RISKY ".
Hebrews11:6 And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.
2 Corinthians 5:7 For we live by faith, not by sight…
Think of a year from now….
Most of us would like to;
a) Increase our security
b) Decrease our risk
Living by Faith, God calls us to;
c) Increase our Risk
d) Decrease our security
LION CHASERS UNDERSTAND THAT PLAYING IT “SAFE “IS “RISKY ".
Living by faith teaches me to chase Lions, I was made to chase Lions, and we are made to chase Lions.
“What would Happen if I didn’t chase my Lions?
Fear would overcome me, failure would overtake me, I would become a prisoner to myself, locked up in my dreams, inabilities and full of doubt, no self worth, pitiful.
A great book to read is In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day: How to Survive and Thrive When Opportunity Roars. by Mark Batterson
Many Thanks to Mark for this book it really changed my life.
ROAR! Sometimes shouting out loud helps!!!!!!!!!!
Albeit the sane approach is to;
Take One Step Forward!
Take One Step Forward!!
I've made out this Road map for my wife and I covenanting to God that we would do this in the year ahead.
• Read the bible daily
• Attend life groups whenever possible
• Attend church whenever possible
• Pray daily
• Read encouraging Christian Books – What’s So Amazing about Grace – Philip Yancy, Life of Beloved – Henri Nouwen. A Long Obedience - Eugene Peterson. Richard Foster, Dallas Willard,
• Engaged with Spiritual Disciplines; silence, fasting, solitude, prayer, meditation, simplicity, vigils,
• Pilgrimage; go on a pilgrimage, journey with God literally there are many places. a great book to read is by Ian Bradley. Pilgrimage: A Spiritual and Cultural History
• Celebrate milestones, set up cairns and way marks.
• Have sacred places to visit and pray, (random rituals and regularly ones – Churches, Chapels, starbucks, garden centres)
• Recieve the Gift of Faith (Ephesians 3: 20 - 21. Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.)
Fear and Courage
We were courageous but neither of us were not fearless.
We may think courage and fear are opposites that can never be found together, but this is wrong. These two qualities can be together; in fact, while it is possible to have fear without courage, courage is always found with fear.
Courage without fear is ignorance or foolishness or both.
The very essence of courage is to acknowledge the risk and move forward boldly, not succumbing to fear.
Courage is not the absence of fear; it is the mastering of it.
Faith requires that we take risks, so faith requires courage in the face of fear. The greater the risk we take, the greater our fear will be, but when we master our fear, great faith is gained.
Do not feel ashamed of your fears; otherwise you may be tempted to deny their existence. Delusion is not courage.
The true path to faith is to swallow your fear, like a lump in your throat, and boldly move forward, clinging to the God who goes with you.
This is a time for God’s people to be courageous. This is a day of challenge, when we are called on to face our greatest fears and then to step forward in faith.
Anytime we are asked to move beyond the familiar, we will feel some level of discomfort and fear.
The question is not whether you feel fear, but whether you allow fear to be your master.
I encourage you to break free from the cage of fear, refusing to accept the bars that confine you to what has been. Begin living a life of valour.
It is not too late to be the warrior you were meant to be!
Live like the royalty you are.
Take One Step Forward!
Take One Step Forward!!
Jeremiah 17: 7-8
“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought.”
1 John 4:18
Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.
I finish with this thought from the book of JOB.
Job 13: 15 Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him;
I will surely defend my ways to his face.
A quite lengthy post today, I trust I have given you much to think about, I would appreciate your thoughts, please comment.