(This is from an "In Touch" devotional from Dr Charles Stanley.)
Thursday, July 24, 2008 - Moving Beyond Our Fears - Luke 1:68-75
The Scriptures distinguish between two kinds of fear, which are healthy and unhealthy. For example, a protective type of anxiety helps prevent avoidable harm. It can warn us not to touch a hot stove or walk on thin ice.
We're also commanded to have a proper fear of God. This includes an overwhelming sense of awe because of who He is. God is Judge and sovereign King. And, we should also live a lifestyle of respectful obedience which honors Him.
Unhealthy fear causes us to feel uneasy, uncomfortable, or threatened. Its source may be a childhood experience or an adult's repeated negative words. The feeling of distress becomes rooted in our thinking. It colors our decision making. As adults, we no longer have a basis for this anxiety, but it may continue to inhibit us.
The imagination is also a source of fear. We can get caught up in "what if" thinking. What if something goes wrong? or What if the outcome I want doesn't happen?
This kind of agitation can block the Lord's best in our life. His purposes often require that we move beyond where we feel most comfortable. Learning new skills, changing jobs, or trying a different way of ministering to others could be part of what He expects.. Such challenges present the opportunity toand obey His request.
Fear doesn't come from God. Allow theto guide you from a place of disquiet into the freedom that is ours in Christ. There you'll discover the ability to follow His plan without being hindered by overwhelming fear.