Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

I came across this scripture one day and was delighted to be reminded of it’s meaning.

This can be an encouragement to those who battle fear in their lives on a daily basis.

God’s Word is Truth and when we find these gems we must hang onto them.  We must meditate on them and allow them to nourish us.  The Word is food to our soul.

1Jn 4:18 NASB There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.

“There is no fear in love” That would indicate that fear and love cannot occupy the same place.  They cannot co-exist.

“but perfect love casts out fear,” What is perfect love?  Or should I say, who is perfect love?

1Jn 4:16 NASB We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

“God is love” The Bible is clear that God is love.  He is the very essence of love. 

So, from this we can conclude that God casts out fear.  It is interesting if you look at some of the commentaries on this.  One said this means “drives out fear, or to turn it out-of-doors.”  We can say God will take our fear and throw it right out the door!  How about that?  I like that idea!

You see fear and love cannot exist together.  When we are Christians, we have God in the form of the Holy Spirit actually living in us.  God is love so they cannot occupy the same space.  Now, which is stronger?  Do you think worldly fear is stronger than God’s love? Who will be the victor in this battle?

Here are two versions of 2 Timothy 1:7. 

2Ti 1:7 LITV For God did not give a spirit of cowardice to us, but of power and of love and of self-control.

2Ti 1:7 KJV For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

You would think that the opposite of fear would be peace.  I thought that for years.  I was full of fear and I wanted peace.  So, in my mind they were opposites.  But, let’s look at this verse.  God did not give us the spirit of fear or cowardice, but of power and of love.  There it is; not fear but love.  The opposite of fear is love.  The power comes with this love in the indwelling Holy Spirit.

Here is what Dr. Jay Adams says: “The enemy of fear is love; the way to put off fear then is to put on love…Love is self-giving, fear is self-protecting.  Love moves toward others; fear shrinks away from them.  But…we must remember that love is the stronger since it is able to ‘cast out’ fear.  In dealing with fear nothing else possesses the same explusive power.”  (Wayne and Joshua Mack, The Fear Factor, Hensley Publishing, Tulsa, Oklahoma 2002, Pg. 23)

God’s love is mighty.  I’m so fortunate to have Him fighting on my side.

You can begin today to take fear in hand and with God’s help throw it out the door. 

Look for someway to turn your thoughts from yourself and toward others. 

  • Make a phone call to check up on someone who has been ill. 
  • Visit someone who needs encouragement from another Christian. 
  • Send someone a card. 
  • Take time to pray for others not just yourself.

There are many things you can do that involves giving of yourself.  Pray about it and allow the Lord to put something on your heart that you can do, then do it. 

Just one reminder, what ever you do, don’t do it in a selfish manner.  Don’t do it just so you can get rid of fear.  Do it out of God’s love for one another.  Do it with a servant heart and attitude.

If you take this challenge, I’d love for you to write in and let us  know what you did to begin to cast out fear and put on love.

I must make this one disclaimer:  If your fear and anxiety are caused from a true physical problem such as low blood sugar, thyroid disease, or something else physical, then those problems need to be addressed also.

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In our PD-Overcomer’s group we’ve been talking about some of the road blocks that stand in our way of clear sailing on the road to complete recovery from panic attacks and anxiety. 

Some of the road blocks that we mentioned were:  complacency, past experiences, lack of trust, sin in our hearts, following emotions instead of intellect, lack of assurance, trying to please others, and not being perfect, negative thinking, bitterness, unforgiveness, anxiety, fear, worry, doubt, and unbelief. 

Wow! That is quite a list isn’t it?  And, those are not the only things that can stand in the way.  But, if we take a closer look at all of these things we could boil it all down to sin and disobedience to the Word of God.  So, first, we need to do business with God and get right with Him.

Now let’s look at the other side of the coin.  The more positive side.

As I’ve thought about this, it has become clear to me how much greater we have it then those who do not know Christ as their Lord.  Have you ever thought about that? 

We have the Word of God to stand upon.  We have the Holy Spirit actually living within us.  We have the power of prayer.  We have God Almighty as our Father, and we have Jesus Christ, our Brother, Intercessor, and Lord.  That is only some of what we have in Christ.  Unbelievers don’t have any of that.  Therefore, we can be different in our lives and be overcomers!

The key to becoming an overcomer of fear and anxiety is an intimate relationship with God!  Remember that!  Strive for it!  Make every effort to accomplish it!  It is so very important.  Get your eyes on Jesus and the things in the Word.  Get you eyes off from yourself, your feelings, and things of this world.  Those are strong words, but I am speaking from my heart and truly believe them.

I’d like to recommend a couple of books that have helped me see God more clearly:

Faithful Women and Their Extraordinary God, by Noel Piper.  This book consists of several short bios of Christian women who have really gone suffered and struggled for the sake of Christ.

They are:  Sarah Edwards, Lilias Trotter, Gladys Aylward, Esther Ahn Kim, and Helen Roseveare.  I’m not quite finished with the book yet, but I’ve really enjoyed reading about how these women faced the trials and tribulations in their lives.  It makes me feel as though I haven’t gone through anything at all.  🙂

Knowing God, by J.I. Packer:  This is a book that I’ve been reading now for some time.  I’ve read it through once and then hit and miss again.  There is so much in it and if you want to get to know God better I highly recommend this book.  It is also one of John MacArthur’s favorites.  It isn’t really easy reading, but it has helped me lately understand who my God really is.

I’m praying for all of you that you will not settle for less than complete recovery.  I want you tol realize that God does have a purpose for everything that is happening in your lives. And that you will trust Him to walk you through your trials and bring you out on the other side.

Mat 19:26 NASB

26 And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

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A Beautiful Picture of God’s Creation! New River Gorge, W.VA.

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Are you more anxious than usual?  Has the bad economy and job insecurity dragged you down?   Are you concerned you won’t have enough money to pay the bills, and you might lose your home?  Are you anxious about your children and their future? Are you worried about catching the swine flu? The list could go on and on.

If you are a Christian I want to remind you that we do not have to live with worry.  In fact, God has told us not to worry, “be anxious for nothing.”  God knows all about each of our individual lives and needs and He is still in control, even though it doesn’t look like it at times. 

Have you ever really grasped the truth that God is Sovereign?  It is so important and especially during these hard times to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God knows what you face, and that He does not allow anything into your life that He does not permit for His own purpose.  You may not fully understand but you can be sure He does. 

I’ve struggled with this truth myself and wondered why certain things happened, but I’ve come to the point where I know that God’s purpose for me is my eternal happiness.  No matter what happens I have a home in Heaven where everything will be wonderful beyond anything I can imagine. 

Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.  Pro 3:5-6 NASB

Also, the Bible tells us that He will not permit us to go through more than we can endure.

No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it. 1Co 10:13 NASB

When I talk about God being Sovereign I mean that God is absolutely free to do whatever He wants.  He is GOD! He is in complete control!  We are not.  He is in charge and rules over us and the world. We must depend on Him for the outcome.  He is Lord and He owns us, therefore, we can be sure He wants only the best for us.  And, He is the only one who knows what is best!  When we realize that God is the one who calls the shots then we can rest in the security of His wisdom.  That knowledge gives us peace!

The LORD has established His throne in the heavens, And His sovereignty rules over all.    Psa 103:19 NASB

Whatever the LORD pleases, He does, In heaven and in earth, in the seas and in all deeps. Psa 135:6 NASB

God is in control of the seasons and day and night.

“While the earth remains, Seedtime and harvest, And cold and heat, And summer and winter, And day and night Shall not cease.” Gen 8:22 NASB

God controls the weather.

For He spoke and raised up a stormy wind, Which lifted up the waves of the sea. Psa 107:25 NASB

God knows the number of our days, as individuals and as nations.

“Since his days are determined, The number of his months is with You; And his limits You have set so that he cannot pass. Job 14:5 NASB

and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation,  Act 17:26 NASB

God does whatever He wants, even over-ruling plans of people and nations.

Psa 33:9-11  For He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast.   The LORD nullifies the counsel of the nations; He frustrates the plans of the peoples.  The counsel of the LORD stands forever, The plans of His heart from generation to generation.

It is God who gives us success in anything we do.  We can do nothing apart from Him.

“I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.  Joh 15:5 NASB

God has adopted us into His family and given us an inheritance.  We were predestined to this for His purpose, and for His glory.

also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will,  Eph 1:11 NASB

God is even Sovereign over our rebellion and sin.

So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires. Rom 9:18 NASB

After pondering all of these scriptures, don’t you agree that God is in control?  He will take care of us and His will will be done in our lives.

Jesus in Matthew 6:25-34 tells us that we are not to worry.  Read this section. He says that He will take care of us.  Instead of wringing our hands and worrying we are to do the following:

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Mat 6:33 NASB

Then He concludes by saying this:

“So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Mat 6:34 NASB

Here is a great promise from God telling us what to do with our anxiety.  We can let God handle it. We don’t need to carry it.

casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.  1Pe 5:7 NASB

Another promise we can count on.

And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Php 4:19 NASB

So, we can conclude with this wonderful uplifting scripture.  We do not have to be anxious over our circumstances.  We do not have to be anxious over perceived fears of things that might or might not come about. 

We must keep our focus on Jesus and know that He loves us and will meet our needs. 

What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? Rom 8:31 KJV

I pray this reminder will bless and help you keep your focus on things above and not on your circumstances.

My help comes from the LORD, Who made heaven and earth. Psa 121:2 NASB

“Deny that God is governing matter, deny that He is ‘upholding all things by the word of His power’, and all sense of security is gone!” Arthur W. Pink

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God takes care of the birds and will take care of us too.  Matt: 6:26

We live in tough times.  We hear it every day on the news.  Our future looks bleak, at least that is what they’d like us to think. 

As Christians how should we respond?  Should we be fearful and full of anxiety? 

“Fear is a more dangerous enemy than those your fear.”  Thomas Watson – Puritan author and pastor.

Isn’t that an interesting quote?  Do you realize many people in the Bible struggled with fear and doubt?  Fear is nothing new!

Just to name a few:

Adam and Eve; they disobeyed God and became fearful and hid from Him.

Abraham; he had a fear of danger, so he lied two times about Sarah being his wife in order to escape danger. 

Sarah had the fear of doubt.  She didn’t believe God that she would have a child so she got Abraham to take her handmaid to provide the child.  Ishmael was the result, and these two tribes still fight today.

Moses had the fear of not being good enough.  God called Him, but he made excuses and tried to get out of it. 

Peter had the fear of man.  Because of that he denied that he knew Jesus three times.

Sometimes our fear can cause sin.  Such was the case of Abraham.  He feared danger so he lied which was a sin.

Sometimes our sin can cause fear.  Such was the case of Adam and Eve.  They sinned first when they disobeyed God and that sin resulted in fear.

In our day it is still the same.  There are sins that can result in fear, such as adultery, lying, thief,  breaking the law, anxiety and worry.

Then there are fears that can cause sin such as fear of public speaking, which is a fear of people, (you back out of doing something God wanted you to do,) fear of what people might think can cause you to lie or cover up something.  

Have you ever wondered how the people from the time of creation until now, when we have psychology and special medications, coped with their fears and anxieties?  I have. 

Fear itself is nothing new we’ve seen that.  What is new is the way we approach it today.

Psychology came along and hijacked God.  The early fathers of psychology were not Christians and they had a secular, humanistic world view.  They believed that all of man’s fears and anxiety came from how a person was raised, their environment, circumstances, and negative thinking.  They came up with a new kind of “medicine,” called psychology. 

When you had emotional problems you would be sent to a psychiatrist, who is a physician but a specialist in “mental illness.”  He would diagnose you by using the Diagnostic & Statistical Manual (DSM) and come up with an “disorder” listed in there by number.  This was a great idea because then the psychiatrists could charge your insurance company for the sessions they would set up for you.  It truly benefited their wallets.  Also, the drug companies played an important role as they came up with drugs specifically for these “mental illnesses and disorders.”  These are called psychotropic drugs.

In 1966 there were 44 of these kinds of drugs, today there are 174.  We spend 27 billion a year on these drugs.  Did all of that fix the problems of fear, anxiety, and stress that people have? 

I think not!  Instead we became a nation of medicated people, going to psychologists regularly and not making any real progress. 

Do you realize  the answer lies in the Word of God?  Yes, God made us and he knows all about us.  Luke was a physician, so God does believe in doctors.  When we are ill in our body we need to go to a physician.  If we have a physical illness then it needs to be treated with medications.  That is true.

But, when we have a problem in our heart, minds, soul, (our spiritual side) then we need to go to the Great Physician and get our help from Him.  It seems the psychiatrist have come between the pastor and the hurting Christian.  Today even pastors send their emotionally upset members to the psychologist for worldly therapy.  Why, because they believe the lie that they themselves are not competent to help the people. 

So, when we have problems with stress, anxiety, fear, and worry, we should run to the Bible and look for our help there. 

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
2Ti 1:7 KJV

One important note:  If you are presently taking medication for anxiety and panic attacks, please, do not stop them without first consulting with your physician who prescribed them and ask him or her how to get off them.  It could be dangerous to try to quit them cold turkey.

Elyse Fitzpatrick, in her book, “Overcoming, Fear, Worry, and Anxiety,” has said the following:

“God loves to call the fearful heart to himself…Why does God delight in helping us to become trusting children, filled with peace and confidence, children who lean on His strength?  Because when He changes hearts like ours into hearts like His, He receives praise and glory.  When we discover that we’re able to walk peacefully through conditions that formerly terrified us, our hearts will overflow with gratitude and thanksgiving–and that brings joy to God.  Only He can change hearts that are frequently overwhelmed by fear into hearts that are overshadowed by His power and bravery, and it’s His delight to do so.”

Do you need a heart change?  If so, God is ready to help you.  He wants to work in your life.

Do you fear God working in your life?  Do you fear the possibility of getting better?  Or, do you look forward to that day wholeheartedly?  In other words, are you ready for change now?

My prayer for you is that you will turn to God for your healing.  That you will trust that He is able to make you the person He created you to be.  He loves you and has a purpose for your existence. 

Trust in Him at all times, O people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us. Selah.    Psa 62:8 NASB

What a wonderful Heavenly Father we have.  He knows us through and through and can work with us to make us whole.  You can be an overcomer!

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Wild Turkey

wild turkey at our bird feeder

 

Have you ever wondered?  Where did all this fear come from anyway?  Where did it originate?

Fear had it origins way back in the Garden of Eden.  Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate of the fruit of the forbidden tree.  That started the whole ball rolling.  When they did that their eyes were opened and they realized they were naked.  So, they made some coverings out of leaves.

“They heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. Then the LORD God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?” He said, “I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself.”  (italics mine) Gen 3:8-10 NASB

Sin and fear entered the picture at this time.  Before that they were not afraid and they lived a very peaceful and fulfilling life in the beautiful garden where they had special and sweet fellowship with the Lord.  Oh, how I wish they had never eaten that fruit!

In this case we could reasonably say that their fear was a result of their sin.  This is something to think about.  When God gives us a command as He did Adam and Eve, which was not to eat of the fruit of that tree, and they disobeyed His command that was sin.  That sin nature has been passed down to all of us, unfortunately.

Today, God has given us many commands in the Bible and when go against them we also sin.  God says,

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”  Php 4:6 NASB

Thank goodness God has given the Christian an antidote for when we mess up and sin, because we all will and do.  It is found over in the book of John.

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1Jn 1:9 NASB

You will notice the little word “if” in this verse.  Well, in reality that is not so little, because the promise God gives us hinges on it.  “If we confess our sins,” then he is faithful to forgive us and cleanse us for our wrongdoing. So, it takes something on our part first, (confession) then he is faithful to fulfill His part. (forgiveness and cleansing.)
Actually confession means that we agree with God.  And, we should be sorry that we disobeyed.

Do you realize that God’s love is much more powerful than our fears?  Look at this scripture.

…that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and might free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives.   Heb 2:14-15 NASB

Isn’t that a wonderful scripture?  We can be free from the power of fear in our lives because Jesus Christ already took care of it. That is what he died on the cross for. What wonderful and powerful love that took.

We will end on a positive note.  Not all fear is sinful.  God has given all of us a kind of fear that protects us from danger. That is not sinful.  Also, God has given us a kind of fear that is godly. 

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. Pro 9:10 KJV

The fear of the Lord is a reverence of God’s majesty.  This is also a good kind of fear.

May God bless you today!

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I want to address the issue of a “chemical imbalance” in our brains as the reason therapist give out psychiatric drugs. This is done all the time and it is a huge money maker for the drug companies and psychiatrists.

I’ve thought for a long time that this was suspect at the least.  My question was, “How do they know there is a chemical imbalance?”  If my thyroid is off they can do a blood test to find that out and then give me a medication to correct it.  This is also, true with blood pressure.  They take my blood pressure and then know if it is in the safe zone.  If not, they prescribe blood pressure medication. 

All this makes sense to me, but if they say I have a chemical imbalance in my brain, I want to see the test results.  But, you know what?  There isn’t any!  They do not exist!  The doctors only “guess” that you have a chemical imbalance and throw pills at you.  These are not just candy pills that wouldn’t harm you, but they are very powerful drugs that actually do change the brain. 

I’ve done some research and find that there is no proof that a chemical imbalance is causing anyone problems such as anxiety, fear, depression, and a lot of other so-called mental problems. 

“The brain is far too complex to be precisely “adjusted” with drugs.  There are more than 500 different neurotransmitters in the brain and no one knows exactly how they work or the consequences of “adjusting” them with drugs.”  (Occult Invasion by Dave Hunt.)

Some people say that panic disorder is a disease, (but it isn’t,) and should be treated the same way as diabetes.  In diabetes the medication is insulin, and for panic disorder they prescribe other drugs.  This, however, is not so. They should not be treated the same way.

Dave Hunt in Occult Invasion goes on to say, “There is one huge difference:  Insulin operates below the neck, while psychoactive drugs affect the brain.  And remember, no one knows what these drugs do to the brain nor how harmful they may be even beyond the many cases of violence, including suicide and murder, which court cases claim were caused by various prescription drugs.”

“In pursuing a “chemical” solution, science ignores what ought to be the first priority:  getting right with God through Jesus Christ.  His incarnation united God and man in His own Person; and He brings that reconciliation and union within the human spirit when He is received as Savior.  Christianity is not a set of rules for one to follow.  Only Christ can live the Christian life, and He will live it in and through those who believe in Him…”

Gal 1:15-16 NASB But when God, who had set me apart even from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace, was pleased to reveal His Son in me so that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult with flesh and blood,

Dave Hunt goes on to say, “The Spirit of God within us needs no help from psychotherapy or drugs.”

It is sad to me to think that millions of people are being duped into thinking they have a chemical imbalance when in fact there is no scientific evidence that they do.  We are becoming a nation of druggies.  If we are anxious they give us a pill.  If we feel sad and blue they give us a pill.  There seems to be a pill for everything.  I know you’ve seen all the commercials on television advertising drugs for anything and everything.  What in the world is going on?

Dear friends, I want so much for each and every one of you to live the life that God wants for to.  I know that some of you can’t even leave your homes.  Some of you can’t get out and enjoy shopping or taking your kids to fun events.  Some of you are so full of anxiety and fear your life is controlled by it.  It makes me sad.  I know how you feel because I’ve been there myself.  I’m very thankful for our Wonderful Savior who delivered me out of that trap.  In my case, it took a long time because I did not know what I know now.  That is why I share with you and keep sharing as I learn and grow in Christ.

Doesn’t it make sense that if God made us He can help us through all our difficulties.  He does allow trials and difficulties into our lives.  He does that out of love.  He allows pressures to come into our lives to test us and help us grow in Him.  We need to get to the place where we can thank God for everything, even the seemingly bad things that come along.  He allows this in order that we become more and more like Christ.  So, we must look for the lessons in whatever we are going through and ask God to reveal to us how we are to deal with it and grow in Him. 

Rom 8:28-29 NASB And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;

Here is a web site I found and read with interest.  You may also want to read this article.

The Chemical Imbalance Hoax

It’s very disturbing to me that so-called professionals would take advantage of vulnerable people because of the love of money, greed, and selfishness.

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This is the final post in this series of Fear of Fear.  This article is very important because you find exactly what you need to do to become an overcomer of fear.

Remember, now, we have been discussing two people who had problems with fear and anxiety to the point that it was controlling their lives. 

First, Paul, was afraid to cross bridges.  Then, Kim, who was afraid of cars.  We looked at some things they both needed to understand in order to conquer their fears.  You can go back and read the articles leading up to this one which explains each of the topics below. 

1.  His fear was real.
2.  His fear was wrong and sinful.
3.  His fear was not of bridges; it was a fear that had become associated with bridges.
4.  Paul’s real fear was of the experiences.  (The cause of fear)
5.  Here is the key to becoming an overcomer.
6.  There is not some mysterious thing going on.
7.  The devil made me do it!
8.  Normal anxiety is good.
9.  Courage
10.Understanding

The final point is: 

11. Take Action

Even if a person reads and understands all of the above points, it does not mean they will necessarily be an overcomer of the fear they face.  You see understanding isn’t enough.  You must take action!

In Paul’s case he had suffered a lot of sleep loss and he discovered its effects were behind his fears.  He saw how he falsely associated crossing bridges with how he felt.  He then prayerfully crossed a bridge.  He was anxious but did not panic.  He did this over and over until his problem was solved.  He was able to get on with his life again.

Kim also faced her fear head on with the knowledge that the Lord would help her, and it wasn’t the car she was fearful of but her own feelings or symptoms.  She too has been victorious.

The point is that even though knowledge about how our bodies work, what is really going on in our minds,  and our relationship to God, is not enough to make us well.  We still have to get out there and DO something.  Take action is our motto!

I know many of you are still plagued with panic attacks.  You have tried everything.  You’ve read every book available on the subject.  You have listened to tapes and bought self-help programs, but you are still not well. 

You need to be informed, and you also must trust in God.  You need to make sure you are in a right standing with God so that He will answer your prayers.  If you have any known sin in your life you need to confess it, repent of it, (and that means a real change) and then believe the promises God has given you in the Word.  Stay in the Word, study it, pray and keep close to God.  You faith is your greatest weapon against fear.

I John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”  (KJV)

Psalm 34:4 “I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.” (KJV)

Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” (KJV)

Take these actions and then face your fear.  Armed with the full armor of God your fear will be defeated.  But, you need to get out there and do something!  Sitting there will not do it.

For some of you this means to get out of your bedroom for a day.  Or, take a shower.  It may mean actually going out of the house to take a short walk.  It may mean going to the store by yourself; drive the car again; take the kids to school; walk the dog; feed the birds.  It could be that you need to find a job again.  Whatever it is, do it.  Don’t make your goal too hard at first, but push yourself ahead a little bit at a time.  God will not let you down.  Lean on Him!

I understand we are all at different places in our lives after being plagued by fear.  If you have read all of this series of articles, then it is time for you  to judge what your own personal goal should be.  Please, I beg of you, make a goal and go for it.  You will never get better and get your life back unless you take action!

II Corinthians 12:9 “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (NIV)

Feel free to comment below and let me know what your new goal is.  Also, come back and share your victories.  It will be a tremendous help to others.

Blessings,
Bonnie

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Spring Colts

We’ve looked at several things that Paul and Kim, the people in our examples had to understand to conquer fear and panic.  Remember that Paul was afraid to cross bridges and Kim was afraid to drive or ride in cars. We started to look at some important facts that Paul needed to understand and consider in order to conquer these problems.  They will help all of us.

1.  His fear was real.

2.  His fear was wrong and sinful.

3.  His fear was not of bridges; it was a fear that had become associated with bridges.

4.  Paul’s real fear was of the experiences.  (The cause of fear)

5.  Here is the key to becoming an overcomer.

6. There is not some mysterious thing going on.

7. The devil made me do it!

Now we will move forward to some other things to think about:

8.  Normal anxiety is good.

There are times when “normal anxiety” is good for us.  Think about that!  Just knowing that takes some of the pressure off.  We need to understand normal anxiety or tension, and use it for good instead of fearing it and trying to remove it. 

When is anxiety good?  Well, suppose you had to get up and give a lesson in front of people at church.  When we do something like that we all feel “nervous,” or “anxious.”  This, believe it or not, is not bad.  What happens is our adrenalin flows in anticipation of when we get up there and speak and we have those butterflies in our stomach, our mouth goes dry, and our hands become sweaty.  Have you ever noticed that many speakers have a glass of water nearby for them?  That is why.  I think most of us have experienced this.

For you and I, we would think we were about to have a panic attack.  This is because we relate those feelings to a panic attack.  In fact, they are normal feelings when we are in those situations.  The good thing this does for us is cause us to be more alert, and more on target with our talk.  It gives us that energy and edge we need to make our talk interesting, and keep the attention of those whom we address. 

I’ve experienced this myself since I’ve had panic attacks.  I’ve had to lead groups now and again and it seemed every time I’d get nervous before doing it.  But, I learned that once I got going with my lesson I’d settle right down.  It was that extra energy that made the lesson interesting and made me more animated and outgoing.  I’d even think of things that I hadn’t planned in my lesson.  I credited the Holy Spirit who helped me, and that is true also.  We must make sure we do all things prayerfully.

The tension the body creates when we are about to do something is good tension.  We need to realize that and harness it.  It helps us to do a better job.  It is only when we feel these anxious feelings and tell ourselves that we will have a panic attack that fear takes over and this good tension spirals out of control.  With understanding we can handle and control our normal anxiety.

The situation might be something like meeting a certain person, or going on a trip, or talking to the boss about a raise, or any number of things.  We get nervous and tense.

Another example of tension that we need but need not fear is going to a job interview.  A few of you face that situation right now.  Know that it is okay to feel that kind of tension as you prepare to go.  Do not interpret these feelings as a panic attack coming on, and then let your mind spiral into the fear thoughts.  You need to recognize what is happening and pray to God to help you with the interview. This tension will help you give a good interview.  Don’t be afraid of tense feelings if you are facing something. They are normal!  We must be alert, not overly relaxed, or not overly tense. 

When  need to keep our mind focused about the task at hand and the subject matter and not on ourselves.  When we drift out thoughts to ourselves, and think about “how well am I doing?” “How do I look?” “Do they like me?” then we have opened the door to the possibility of panic.

I often think about my level of tension like a car.  When I’m home I’m more relaxed and I think of it as being in “low gear.”  When I go out and get around people I often feel like I’m in “high gear.”  I’m revved up and ready to go!  I’ve often wondered why, but now realize that it is normal to feel that way.  My body gets ready for what ever I will face.  It is great to know that I’m not “strange,” with how I feel.  When I’m around new people especially I sometimes get giddy and think of all kinds of cute things to say.  That is nervous tension being released.  It can be used for good.

Jay Adams says,in The Christian Counselor’s Manual, Zondervan, 1973, “Normal anxiety is good and needs to be understood and used rather feared and removed.  This God has provided to enable men to live responsibly.  It is only the fear spiral–and at its end the debilitating panic–that is wrong and must be overcome.  Indeed it is through this normal anxiety preparation that God will give courage to face and conquer the problem.” 

9.  Courage:

Christians need courage to face this problem.  This courage will come out of our faith and trust in God and His Word.  We have many precious promises in the Word that we can cling to and know that God will be faithful.

Keep in the Word and prayer and God will renew our minds and help us be in control of anxiety.

10.  Understanding:

We have looked at several things that we need to understand in order to conquer those awful panic attacks in our lives.  There is hope, and with understanding of how the good Lord made us and how we operate, we can learn how to control our feelings and be overcomers!

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