We are looking at the book Pray, Decide, and Don’t Worry: Five Steps to Discerning God’s Will. The book was written by a married couple, Bobby and Jackie Angel.
In my last post about this book, we looked at the difficulty some people have in asking deep questions about their identity. Bobby Angel suggests that this has a lot to do with fear. When we get quiet and start thinking about our identity, it is not unusual that anxiety and fear can appear. It could be tied with perfectionism or demands that others placed on you at an early age. It could be a fear of failure that keeps us from attempting anything outside of our comfort zone. There has been much written about FOMO (“fear of missing out”) which is particularly endemic to our young people. It could be fear of commitment or a deep wound caused by abuse, divorce, or betrayal. These fears are very real. They are very natural. We have permission to experience these types of fear. They are part of the human experience. The key question is how do we overcome this fear.
Fear does not come from the Lord. It comes from our own experience and the enemy of God. Satan wants to pull our eyes away from our true identity which is that of a beloved son or daughter of the Father. Bobby suggests we recognize the fear and name it. “I experienced a fear of…” After naming the fear, invite God in and ask for the grace to accept it and for the courage to act despite the fear. 1 Peter 5:7 says, “Cast all your anxieties upon Him, for he cares about you.” His love inspires confidence and trust. Bobby also quotes the first words of John Paul II when he stood on the balcony after being elected Pope: “Be not be afraid.”
In closing, Bobby offers some insightful questions. “I often experienced a fear of…” Where does this fear come from? What experience in my life has led to this buildup of fear in this particular area? What great things am I being called to do?
Ask God for boldness and an increase of trust. God the Father wants to cast out fear and fill you with His grace and goodness in peace. In closing, Bobby offers several Scripture passages:
· Psalm 118:6 – With the Lord on my side I do not fear what man can do to me.
· Haggai 2:5 – My spirit abides among you. Fear not.
· John 16:33 – I have said this to you – that in me you may have peace in the world. You will have tribulation but be of good cheer. I have overcome the world.