Common Fears and How Faith Can Help Conquer Them
“Fear’s not a new thing,” says Jason Hallcox, who helped guest host Priority Talk for us back in August. And he’s right. Fear doesn’t discriminate, either. It affects everyone in the human race. But Jason clarifies that these days, fear has been on the rise. “I believe we’re seeing people become aware of their surroundings but they forget that they’re in the hand of God. That’s where fear will creep in.”
Top fears in America
Due in large part to the pandemic, fear has definitely increased in the hearts and minds of Americans in recent years. In 2021, SafeHome.org discovered Americans’ top 10 fears are:
- Loved ones dying
- Loved ones becoming seriously ill
- Mass shootings
- Not having enough money for retirement
- Government corruption
- Becoming terminally ill
- Hate crimes
- High medical bills
- Widespread civil unrest
While fear is all around us, it doesn’t have to control us. Let’s look at what God has to say about fear.
What the Bible says about fear
The words “do not fear” appear in the Bible 365 times, ironically the same number of days there are in a year. This is no mistake; the Bible emphasizes over and over again we are to have faith over fear. Or, as our friend Jason Hallcox says, fear can either cripple or activate us.
Not giving in to fear is, of course, easier said than done. But when walking by faith is just too hard, we don’t have to let fear paralyze us. We can take baby steps away from fear towards faith. How do we do that?
Assurance vs. Insurance
The world’s solution to fear is to try to find confidence and security in ourselves. The world says you can prepare for the worst, protect yourself, and become stronger in and of yourself to handle what life throws at you. We are told we can conquer fear if we put our minds to it and “just believe in ourselves.”
Jesus, on the other hand, says that our anchor is secure in Him alone and that rooting ourselves in Him is what will bring us true, lasting peace and freedom from fear. It’s the difference between insurance and assurance.
“If we remind ourselves…of how faithful He is to us, the fear will start to pale in comparison to the faithfulness of God.” -Jason Hallcox
The sovereignty of God
When we consider all that could happen to us, what is happening in the world right now, and the things we’re afraid of, we have to look at it all in this context: God is sovereign! Nothing happens without His knowledge or command. When trials come and we face hardship, we have to view our suffering through this eternal perspective. He will always be with us, no matter what. Fear has no foothold when our faith is strong.
What fearful times can teach us
God can use fear and times of hardship in our lives to teach us more about Himself and draw us closer to him. If we turn on the news, we will surely become discouraged by all the evil in the world. We have to cling to the hope we have in Christ and trust that our suffering has a place in His plan. Governments and powers in this world will attempt to manipulate, control, and destroy, but these plans will certainly fail. God has already won! We don’t have to live in fear of anything. Those who belong to Him are safe in Him.