For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline
(2 Timothy 1:7).
What’s your biggest fear? Snakes? Planes? Snakes on a plane? Regardless of what it is, every one of us is afraid of something.
According to a quick Google search, the top ten fears of people are:
- Speaking before a group
- Insects and bugs
- Financial problems
- Deep water
Chances are, you can relate to at least one of these.
But, remember, God has not given me a spirit of fear, which means I no longer had anything to truly be fearful about. Nonetheless, this fear of singleness remained a part of my life. So what gives?
In order to understand this dichotomy, we need to recognize that there are two types of fear:
- Legitimate fear (fear of a very real and present danger).
- Illegitimate fear (fear of an imagined or assumed danger).
When fear sneaks back into our lives as believers, it’s always illegitimate fear. It’s fear that is not based on the truth. Ultimately, it’s a sign that we don’t believe God will keep His word.
Let’s look at that top-10 list again. How many of those fears are still legitimate once we hold them up to the truth of Scripture?
Do we still need to fear financial ruin if we recognize that God has promised to meet all our needs? (see Matthew 6:26)
Do we need to be afraid of death (which is ultimately what the fear of heights, deep water, and many other fears are about), if we understand that death doesn’t separate us from God but releases you into glorious eternity with Him? (see John 11:23-26)
Once we recognize how Jesus has set us free from any legitimate reason to be afraid, our fears are all exposed as illegitimate.
As I placed my focus back on the truth of God’s love for me, I recognized that I wasn’t actually lonely, even in my singleness. The love I receive from my friends, my family, and from God Himself was more than enough to satisfy my heart’s desire for companionship. And the same can be true for you as well.
So the next time you’re afraid, look to the Scriptures and see what God says about whatever is frightening you. Perhaps you will discover that, thanks to the Spirit of Christ within you, you no longer have anything to truly be afraid of.