We all know what it’s like to be afraid of something. Even though we know that fear is a perfectly normal reaction that gives our body the alert to be careful, it doesn’t make it any less uncomfortable or, unwelcome. So is there anything we can do about fear?
There are many types of fear. For example, anxiety is a fear, but is more of a worry and stress-inducer about things that often deal with the future — its dwelling on something that may not have happened yet and may never happen.
Which ever type of fear we’re experiencing, fear itself is one of the most powerful emotions and it can have a very profound effect on our mind and body.
What Can We Do About Fear?
Fear can either incapacitate us, or it can energize us into action. We can stress and dwell on it, or we can take control and try our best to do something about it. Fear is fear, but our response to it can be guided by our faith.
Face your fear. Avoiding fear usually makes them scarier and that means we put off trying to deal with them. Whatever your fear, try to approach it from an analytical perspective — What are you afraid of? Why? What can be done about it? Most experts agree that facing fear and getting more control over it helps us to better deal with it. It may not go away, per se, but hiding it in our subconscious rarely does any good.
Be Mindful: If dwelling on the source of fear is your main problem, after facing it by analyzing it, take steps to remain in the moment. Clear your mind of the fear and rumination and work to stay in the now — distract yourself by going for a long walk, exercising, cleaning out the closets, etc. Some people pray and meditate. What ever helps to get your mind off of the fear, it will give you much needed breathing room.
Imagine the Outcomes: After facing the fear and getting to the root cause of your fear, consider the scenario approach by considering the “what if’s.” This is most assuredly not pleasant, but many find that once they kind of know what could happen, their fear subsides a bit.
Hold Onto the Positives: We’ve analyzed our fear, imagined the outcomes and now, we need to embrace the hope and positivity. Focus on the potential good — that you can overcome this…you will overcome it. You have friends and family that can help you. There are professionals out there who will do all they can to help you. No one is saying we throw on rose-colored glasses and blithely ignore the fear, but we must try to see the positive and focus on doing what is within our power.
And one of the most important things we can do to conquer fear, is to pray.
Prayer: Perhaps the best way to conquer or handle fear better, is prayer. Prayer is very powerful and we shouldn’t forget this when trying to deal with fear. God knows what is in our hearts and He knows when we are afraid, so take refuge in God.
To quote, “Don’t let the noise of the world keep you from hearing the voice of God.”
Get some alone time with God by praying in a quiet space. Praying fervently is fine and there is no shame in pouring your heart out to God. It’s okay to cry and it’s okay to beg, because He understands the world we’ve created down here is filled with trials and tribulations. Understand that God does care — He is not apathetic to our situation, but rather, cares deeply. Prayer is personal and there are of course many prayers you can read to help deal with fear, but personally, I prefer to just pour out my heart to God as a child would to a parent — I realize He already knows, but saying it helps and asking for guidance, support, faith and the power to overcome makes me feel better. Pray to God and above all, have faith — know that He hears you, loves you and cares for you. We should remember that God’s will is supreme, so trust in Him and take comfort that He knows what is right for you — so pray, have faith and trust that God will help get you through your fear.
These Bible passages are so helpful when it comes to dealing with fear and I hope they give you comfort:
“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
“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
“Tell everyone who is discouraged, Be strong and don’t be afraid! God is coming to your rescue…” – Isaiah 35:4
“Do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?” – Luke 12:22-26
“The Lord is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?” – Psalm 27:1
“He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” – Deuteronomy 31:8
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9
“Peace is what I leave with you; it is my own peace that I give you. I do not give it as the world does. Do not be worried and upset; do not be afraid.” – John 14:27
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” – Matthew 6:34
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6-7
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” – Romans 8:28
“But now, this is what the Lord says…Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.” – Isaiah 43:1