Face Your Fears
Fear tends to prevent us from moving first toward and then beyond our pain. Instead it becomes the standard of reference for the way we live.
One woman shared with me how she had a great fear of something in her immediate past.
Her fear and imagination convinced her that the people of the church hated and despised her.
She even thought that her close friends had turned against her.
She had stopped attending church, and stopped teaching in the children’s classes.
She withdrew into isolation, fearing that someone was going to condemn her.
She even imagined that when the phone rang, that it was probably the church telling her that she was no longer a member.
She admitted privately to me that she had done something wrong. She felt that she could not face the church or her friends because of this thing in her past. As she said, ‘It would just be too embarrassing to go back.’
The sad part was that since her separation and isolation from the church and her friends, she had been very unhappy and unfulfilled.
She was struggling with continual depression and thoughts of suicide. Yet not one person at her church knew of her pain.
Her problem was that she was running away from the sin in her life. While she knew that this sin was present in her life, she was afraid to deal with it based on what others might think.
Now that you know that there are problems in your life, bravely face them by critically examining your life, in spite of your fear of what others might say or think.
There is an old story about a lion. It seems that a pack of lions allow the old lion to do the roaring, because he doesn’t have the strength or speed necessary to catch his prey.
He just roars loudly, while the strong young lions wait in the bush. If the intended victim runs from the roar, the younger lions have an easy time catching the prey because it runs right into their waiting trap. However, the intended victim would have been in less danger, if he had run toward and past the old lion.
When you fear anything, practice this lesson: run toward the roar. Run toward your fear!You will discover that the old toothless lion can’t hurt you. Run away from your fear only to stay in bondage to the fear and to be devoured by the enemy.
Recently, I observed a child and his mother as they entered the movie theater.
Outside in the lobby, the child had been excited about going to see the movie because it was a popular animated cartoon well known to all kids.
As soon as this three-year-old reached the door of the theater, he began to thrash around and scream, ‘I don’t want to go in there!’
As an observer, one would ask, ‘What was there in this movie theater filled with many other small children that made this particular child so afraid?
Rather than cause a scene, the mother quickly picked up her son, covered his eyes, laid his head on her shoulder and removed the child from the theater.
Instead of instructing or comforting the child, trying to calm his fear, she left the theater reinforcing his unfounded fears.
In his little mind the terrorizing fear must be real because his Mom responded by quickly covering his eyes and leaving the theater.
Often, we deal with ourselves in the very same way. Instead of dealing with ourselves, we prefer to defer dealing with the real issues of our life.
Confronting self and confessing your past is not easy, but very necessary. Your past may be hurtful to reflect upon.
This is OK. Your feelings may become overwhelming to the point that you can’t function properly. This, too, is OK.
Embracing the past does not mean that what you did is OK.
Neither does it mean that you are going to repeat what you did again and again.
How has my past impacted my current life or lifestyle?
How has my past impacted my present or most recent relationship?
How has my past impacted my sexuality?
How has my past impacted my faith in God?
Use a piece of paper and record your own list in answer to these four questions. You will be referring back to them during the course.
1. What areas of your life are being destroyed by the ants of your life? In other words, how has your past destroyed or is destroying your life?
2. What are your fears?
3. What is there about your life are you try to hide?
Stop. Take a moment to pray for God to reveal all facts regarding your past no matter how you feel at the moment.
4. What came to your thoughts (mind) as you prayed?
Remember, be honest with yourself as you answer these questions.
Remember: What you share with Pastor Ken is private and treated as confidential information.
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