Finding Freedom from Fear
New Life Ministries
1. Some fear is normal. Everyone has the "butterflies in the stomach"
feeling once in a while. Fear crosses the line into unhealthy anxiety
when it controls and disrupts your life. If fear has a dominating grip
on your life, you must begin the process of dealing with it or it will
keep you from fulfilling your God-designed potential. "For God has
not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline".
2 Tim. 1:7
2. If your fear seems irrational and erratic, you may have a biological
disposition to anxiety problems. While medication is not the answer to
all fear problems, it can mean life-changing freedom for those who have
certain chemical imbalances in their brain. An experienced psychiatrist
can help you determine if your fear has a biological or emotional root
3. Some people's unhealthy fear has its root in a lack of trust. Because
they've been deceived by a family member or trusted friend, they find it difficult
to trust the sovereignty of God. If we really believe God is in control of
our lives, desperate situations don't seem as frightening. "In God I
have put my trust, I shall not be afraid." Psalm 56:4
4. Many anxiety disorders are exacerbated by inactivity. Regular physical
exercise can have significant emotional benefits, due to the release of calming
chemical agents in your brain. After consulting a physician, determine to
find an exercise routine, perhaps walking or swimming, which you enjoy enough
to do daily.
5. People who struggle with fear often isolate themselves, which is one of
the worst things they can do. We need to know that we are not alone as we
face life's challenges. Just as we need a regular time of intimate fellowship
with God, we need the strength and encouragement that comes from sharing our
lives with others on an intimate level. "And let us consider how to stimulate
one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together,
as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another." Hebrews 10:24,25
6. Examine the root cause of your fear. Does your fear seem irrational or
is there some traceable root cause? Honest self-examination, perhaps with
the help of a trusted friend or mental health professional, is a great place
7. What you eat affects your body chemistry. Caffeine, sugar and others chemicals
can act as a stimulant and magnify anxiety. See if cutting out certain foods
changes your emotional state.
8. People who struggle with fear are often unreasonably pessimistic about
the future. When your brain tells you to expect the worst, examine the coming
situation in light of God's perspective and His commitment to standing with
you in all situations. He Himself has said "I will never desert you,
nor will I forsake you" so that we confidently say, "the Lord is
my helper, I will not be afraid. What shall man do to me?" Hebrews 13:5,6
9. Fear and anxiety are not necessarily signs of unbelief, as some in the
Christian community would contend. The myth that becoming a Christian exempts
you from emotional problems has caused many wonderful, faithful people to
live their lives trapped in a prison of fear. Take a chance and share your
struggle with a Christian friend, pastor or therapist. You may find the direction
and encouragement you need to start down the path of emotional freedom.
10. The oft-quoted statement "We have nothing to fear but fear itself"
is usually true. Think back to fearful situations and examine the outcome.
Things weren't as bad as you feared, were they? Examine how God protected
you and used difficult times to mold and shape you. His track record for faithfulness
Used by permission of New Life Ministries. Take advantage of the many books,
tapes and helpful guides that deal with this common issue. New Life Ministries
has a toll-free resource line available to you -- 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
You can contact us at 1-800-NEW-LIFE and we'll be pleased to help in any way
we can. Or visit www.newlife.com.