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We are living in fearful times. The world is unpredictable. Strange legislative bills are getting passed, and the government is making decisions like greedy kids picking and choosing from the candy aisle. We feel yanked around and lied to on all sides. 

 

Then there are our own private assaults. Fears are like birds flying over our heads all day, trying to grab our attention. “You should worry about your health—that pain in your side has not gone away… worry about money…worry about your son’s new girlfriend…” 

 

Worry and fear can sometimes feel like an important task. We think, “I just need to think this through…” Yet our thoughts drift, anxious and chaotic. Sometimes, it feels like we just need God to help out a little bit, to carry some of the burden. Perhaps that is why Paul needed to clarify that God “has not given us a spirit of fear…” 

 

Fear-inducing shadows always stand nearby, throwing out lures. The temptation is for us to peer out into the darkness. We feel like if we can just see what’s out there, if we can know for sure, we might feel safer. Is it bad news? Is it cancer?

What is True? What is Real?

 

“What if” questions fall in line, ready to pounce. But Philippians 4:8 says, “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true… meditate on these things.” 

 

Here’s the deal—the *possibility* of all those things that might happen is *not true.* They are not real. To even think of them is to disobey God—all the “what ifs” are, quite simply, not our business. We must not meddle in what is only God’s business. 

 

We must keep our minds on today’s troubles. Jesus says, “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” (Mathew 6:43) 

 

In a way, tomorrow isn’t real – only today, only this moment is truly happening. It’s always just the present. That’s why it’s called the “Eternal Now.” Carry your burden for today, and trust God with everything else.

 

Fear thrives in the unknown. It loves to remain half-concealed, shadowy, and vague. Why? Because most of the time, as soon as we see it fully and clearly it loses the force of its power.

 

You might think, “But scary things really DO happen… what then?”

 

Except in extreme cases, when frightening situations arise, they are often less terrifying than we imagined. In that present moment, vague anxieties usually lose their power, allowing us to see the situation for what it truly is.

 

That’s not to say that hard or scary things won’t happen. Hard things will undoubtedly occur in our lifetimes. But there is always grace for those times when they come if we ask for it. God is ready and waiting to supply our needs, but we often never even think to ask! 

 

As Corrie Ten Boom’s father answered her when she asked him about this, “You do not need the train ticket until you board the train.” God supplies what we need at the right time to get through it. God says, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)

 

Fearful thoughts and feelings undermine your peace and take your eyes off Christ. We can fight this battle, however. As Martin Luther said, “You cannot keep birds from flying over your head, but you can keep them from building a nest in your hair.” The future is unknown, but God is known. Remember how he saved you in the past? How He saved countless others? That is why he is called our rock of refuge. 

Practical Tips: 

 

  • Make a daily habit of prayer and scripture. Your heart is like a garden that must be tended. The most important way to not live in a state of anxiety and fear is by regularly fixing your eyes on Christ. Open your heart to the grace that he has to give you. His grace will strengthen you daily so that as you face trials and “laugh at the days to come.” (Proverbs 31)

  • Write down your anxieties. As previously stated, anxious thoughts wield greater influence when they remain vague. Jotting them down aids in clarifying your thoughts and enables you to realize that these thoughts might not be as potent as initially perceived, allowing you to “take every thought captive.” A prayer Journal can also be a helpful way of “casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” (1 Peter 5) 


If you’re interested in deepening your connection with God, cultivating a Christ-like character, experiencing more joy, and reducing anxiety, we invite you to join us for Sunday morning worship at Dream City Church, plug into a ministry opportunity, or explore our website to learn more.

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