Fear wants to be your boss. God says, “Nope…”

Happy rainy Friday church family! So far we have covered three hindrances to enjoying the Gospel changing us. These three so far have been guilt, shame, and anger. This Sunday we will add another great hindrance to life change through the Gospel, FEAR AND WORRY. Our fear dwells in the present telling us that this world is dangerous. Worry lives in the future and continually says, “What if this happens, what if that happens, what if this does not happen, what if, what if. Worry is rooted in the future but reaches back to our present lives robbing us of all joy and peace in the Lord and happiness in our families. Fear and worry team up and says right now may be OK but I know things are going to get worse soon. Fear can become the norm of everyday life. Fear can result in misery, depression, anger, overprotection, anxiety. What about my children, their driving, their schooling, what about my health, economic collapse, investments failing, being broke, being forgotten, my hair, my figure, cancer, Alzheimer disease, sharks, spiders and our next president? There is an endless list of things to fear and be worried about. There is no real limit to our fears. Pause for a moment and take your top three fears and ask what they say about yourself? What do they say that you really desire, what you value, what you love?
Can you imagine a life without fear? Can you imagine never worrying about what may happen or not happen? We are not talking about healthy fears, like fearing driving on Hwy 17 so that you fasten your seatbelt. We are talking about living the life that God has called us to live without any fear rooted in unbelief or misplaced values (idolatry). God has said over 300 times in Scripture, “Do not be afraid!” This command is everywhere throughout Scripture, in the Old and New Testaments. But why?
 
In all of these verses you will see God’s deep care for His people. God knows our fears and anxieties and He says please do not be afraid of that, I am your God. He says, please look to me and my strength and my power not your own. These over 300 commands to “do not be afraid”, “fear not” are not coming from another human who does not know what the future will hold. These words are coming from God Himself who determines all things in our lives. He knows the future and says it really is going to be OK, I have so much more for you than fear and worry. These words are coming from our God who matches His care and words with power and promises and actions.
 
Understanding the Gospel will help you conquer fear. If you misunderstand the Gospel you will misunderstand your identity as a justified, redeemed, adopted child of God. You are an heir of Christ. You are loved. All of His promises are YES! You being a child of God with all of your inheritance of being that child brings a joy and peace and hope in the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13). There is a day coming when there will be no more suffering or death or fear (Revelation 21). There will be no more words for fear. The experience will be gone. Every circumstance will be made new and fear gone. This is our destiny and hope. Live with this future in mind. Today, hold onto the promise that because of Jesus Christ, His death, His resurrection and now His presence at the right hand of God, He is interceding for us. And because of that intercession nothing will separate us from the love of Christ, no tribulation, no distress, no persecution, no famine, no nakedness, no danger and no sword (Romans 8:34-35). This is your Gospel identity, your hope, your guarantee. How do you think you will look back on your fears 40000 years from now?
 
Matthew 6:33-34 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. “ Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow…
 
I love you Church Family, Steve

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