According to experts, what people fear most is the fear of death. I disagree. After writing a book on the topic, it appears to me that people are more afraid of the unknown. What’s worse, they allow this fear to hold them back from setting goals to having a family and everything in between.
A few days ago, I received an email from a sweet woman who has two healthy children and longs for another. Yet, she has decided not to have another child because she fears her luck will run out and the child will be born with disabilities. My heart aches for her. She is bound by the fear of the unknown. God never intended for her to live this way. In fact, He never intended for any of us to live paralyzed by fear.
Reading her email along with several others caused me to wonder. “What’s holding me back from fulfilling the desires of my heart?” What’s holding me back from living out my dreams, setting goals, reaching for the stars? What’s hold me back from trusting God in the face of challenge? What’s keeping me from believing in His promise?
It’s nothing less than fear. Fear distracts and robs us of these things.
Anytime I stop too long and look at my circumstances, I run the risk of being distracted. God does not want me to be overwhelmed by what I see, don’t see or by what I experience. He wants me to be well informed so that I can make good decisions. Otherwise, I would miss His best.
Satan, on the other hand, wants me to become so wrapped up in what’s going on around me that I fail to trust God and follow His plan. The enemy wants you and me to live in fear. He knows if he can spook us, he can prevent us from dreaming, planning, growing and living.
When we learn to live life by faith instead of fear, the future becomes hopeful. When God instructed Joshua to cross the Jordan River, He also promised to go with him every step of the way. Did that mean there wouldn’t be obstacles? No. Did that mean he wouldn’t face sorrows or troubles. Absolutely not. But God had made a promise to Joshua and His people. God promised to lead them to the promise land. But before they received this blessing, they had to follow several steps.
Over the next few days, you and I are going to follow some steps that will lead us away from fear and toward a life of faith.
Step one: Seeing God’s Promised Provision.
Never forget that God gives us the desires of our hearts. Who do you think puts those desires there in the first place? So often, we doubt instead of dream that the impossible can be ours. The same was true for the children of Israel. When they reached the Promise Land, they were hesitant to claim what God had promised. Why—because there were giants in the land. Suddenly, they were distracted by their circumstances. Instead of trusting God and claiming their promise, fear made the desire of their hearts seems impossible.
I’ve faced many giants in my life. Each became a roadblock to my dream. The same is true for the mother who longs for another child. Fear of having an unhealthy child has become a roadblock in her life preventing her from receiving a wonderful blessing. It took years for me to learn that when I view life from a limited perspective, I won’t go very far. I’ll miss God’s best. God sees the bigger picture and he knows what must take place in order for me (and you) to reach our full potential.
When God makes us a promise–to go with us every step of the way–He can be trusted no matter what the future holds.
What about you? Is the giant of fear blocking you? Is it holding you back from all God’s intends you to be? Is it keeping you from enjoying some blessing? Then join me this week as we move forward through unknown territory by faith.