Face My Fears – Given enough information, we find every character in the Bible experienced fears and I am including Jesus in my statement. Noah experienced fear building the ark (Heb 11:7). Abraham had many fears. Jacob was afraid of Esau and Laban. Moses feared failure. The Lord was constantly telling Joshua to control his fear. Elijah feared Jezebel. King Saul feared David. David feared Saul. The thing you fear actually fears you because once faced, it has no more power. On and on it goes. However, to leave something here, I must face my fears!
I Want To Leave Something Here
By Pastor Delbert Young
Face My Fears
Face My Fears
Scriptures: Matthew 26: 38-39, 44, Luke 22:44, 1 Samuel 21:10-13, Mark 4: 38, 40, 2 Timothy 1:7, Matthew 10:28, 1 Samuel 17:11, 1 Samuel 17:24, 1 Samuel 17:28 – 33, 1 Samuel 17:37, 1 Samuel 17:38-39, 1 Samuel 17:40, 2 Corinthians 10:4, 1 Samuel 17:46, 1 Samuel 17:51
We are in our series titled I WANT TO LEAVE SOMETHING HERE! As we journey through life, we all end up somewhere. Where will you end up? When you get there, what will you have left that is meaningful? Are you truly living, or just existing? Will your life have accomplished anything? When life writes your final chapter, what will it say?
Katherine Ann Porter wrote in an article of Christianity Today titled Ship of Fools, “I’m appalled at the aimlessness of most people’s lives today; 50% don’t pay any attention to where they are going; 40% are undecided and will go in any direction; only 10% know what they want, and even then all of them don’t go toward it.” How about you? Do you know what you want? Do you have direction?
If I am going to leave something here, I need to know where I am going and I must do some things to cause it to happen. I want to talk today about FACE MY FEARS!
“THE TRUMAN SHOW” is a movie about the life of Truman Burbank (Jim Carrey) who was born in a literal “dome” world and kept there all his life. Truman is deceived into believing his dome world is the real world. Truman eventually figures out his world is artificial, but to escape, he must face his fear – water! He finally does just that. He exits his “life in a dome” and enters the life he was created to live. How many Christ followers live life in a dome when they could be living the life they were created to live? However, to do it, I must FACE MY FEARS.
FEAR(S) IS A UNIVERSAL EMOTION. We all have fears. I was amazed to find in my research there are over 500 phobias. There are phobias from A (Ablutophobian – Fear of washing or bathing) to Z (Zoophobia – Fear of animals).
Given enough information, we find every character in the Bible experienced fear(s) and I am including Jesus in this statement. Noah experienced fear building the ark (Heb 11:7). Abraham had many fears. Jacob was afraid of Esau and Laban. Moses feared failure. The Lord was constantly telling Joshua to control his fear. Elijah could call down fire from heaven, but feared Jezebel. King Saul feared David. David feared Saul. (The thing you fear actually fears you because once faced, it has no more power.) Daniel feared a vision. Nebuchadnezzar feared a dream. Jonah feared going to Nineveh. Joseph feared taking Mary as a wife. Peter feared the Pharisees so badly he denied Christ. The apostle Paul feared (Act 18:9; 27:24). Fear is a major topic of the Bible. We find the word afraid about 200 times in the Bible. We could say it this way. People are afraid to live the life God has for them. However, to LEAVE SOMETHING HERE, I MUST FACE MY FEARS!
FEAR(S) WILL STOP YOUR PURPOSE.
Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane. He was facing the original fear factor. It was the greatest struggle of his life. Jesus knew what was coming would be so horrific he begged Father God three times to find a different way.
(Matthew 26: 38-39, 44) Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt… And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words.
Fear attacks our souls – thinking, emotions, and will. The soul is the center of man and is the link between the body and spirit (1Th 5:23). Fear is relentless until faced. Even Jesus prayed about it three times. Had fear won, Jesus would not have gone to the cross and finished his purpose and destiny. We can and do miss God’s plan because of the potential of fear. It is probably true fear is the #1 thing with the ability to stop us from accomplishing our dreams and purpose.
III. FEAR AFFECTS US SPIRITUALLY, MENTALLY, AND PHYSICALLY.
(Luke 22:44) And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.
Fear attacked the soul of Jesus and then affected him physically. His sweat became blood. He was exceeding sorrowful. He was in an agony. Fear affected Jesus mentally. Fear affected Jesus spiritually. Jesus questioned Father God.
Have you ever heard of someone having a panic attack? Jeffrey P. Thomas said it comes from intense fear and includes palpitations and pounding of the heart, sweating, trembling, shortness of breath, choking, chest pain, nausea, dizziness, numbness, and chills or hot flashes.
Medical specialists are now saying 90% of the chronic patients they have treated did not begin with a cough or cold, but began with fear. Some of these fears are the fear of losing a job, of old age, money problems, of exposure, of rejection, etc. Did you know many people begin a life of being overweight because of fear of rejection? Eventually fears manifest themselves as “a clinical symptom.” Studies show the patient will begin a series of rounds going from doctor to doctor, taking injections, hormones, tranquilizers, and tonics in search of relief.
Fear has the potential to shorten a life or incapacitate a life.
FEAR WILL CA– USE YOU TO DO VERY STRANGE AND IRRATIONAL THINGS. Fear caused David to act irrationally.
(1 Samuel 21:10-13) And David arose, and fled that day FOR FEAR OF Saul, and went to Achish the king of Gath… And David laid up these words in his heart, and was SORE AFRAIDof Achish the king of Gath. AND HE CHANGED HIS BEHAVIOUR before them, and feigned himself mad in their hands, and scrabbled on the doors of the gate, and let his spittle fall down upon his beard.
(NIV) So he pretended to be insane in their presence; and while he was in their hands he acted like a madman, making marks on the doors of the gate and letting saliva run down his beard.
Fear caused David the giant killer to do insane things. Fear will literally drive you out of your mind.
FEAR CAN CA– USE US TO QUESTION GOD AND LOSE OUR FAITH. Jesus and the disciples were crossing the Sea of Galilee when they encountered a violent storm. Fear overcame the disciples.
(Mark 4: 38, 40) Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” …He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
It seems Jesus felt the disciples should know what to do and how to handle the storm, but fear changed all of this. Fear will cause us to not do what we know we should do in times of life’s storms.
Later, we find it was fear causing Peter to deny Jesus three times. Fear has the potential to make us deny our faith and question God.
YOUR CHILDREN AND GRANDCHILDREN ARE FACING FEARS.
The Foundation for Child’s Development interviewed 2,200 seven to eleven year olds Two-thirds of them had serious fear issues varying from bullies or bad people hurting them to mom and dad fighting and divorcing. Fear is real and we need to help our children learn to face fears no matter their age.
What is your fear? Could it be your health, finances, children, employment, or marriage? It is something and if you are going to LEAVE SOMETHING HERE, you must identify it andFACE YOUR FEAR! If you do not, it will rob you of your abundant life.
VII. FACING AND OVERCOMING FEAR. The Bible tells us God did not give us a spirit of fear.
[2 Timothy 1:7] For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
When we deal with fear, we are dealing with a spiritual thing counteracting our power(natural and spiritual), our love (how we treat people), and our sound minds (thought process).
Interestingly, though God did not give us a spirit of fear, we are told to fear God.
[Matthew 10:28] And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
The first and probably most important point about facing and overcoming any fear is not to fear the fear. Instead, fear God. There have been several times when people threatened this ministry and me. One time Judy was very concerned and fear was trying to control us. It was affecting our power, love, and minds. I knew I had done nothing wrong and finally one day said to Judy, “I don’t have time for this. If this person can take this ministry down then so be it. I am going to do what I believe the Lord has told me to do.” From that day forward the threats lost their power. There will be times in life when you must decide if you will fear God and do what he has said, or fear people, situations, circumstances.
An American Indian once said, “It seems, my brothers, I have two dogs fighting in my heart: one is a very good dog, a beautiful dog and is always watching out for my best interests. The other is a very bad dog and is always trying to destroy the things I want to build up. These dogs give me a lot of trouble because they are always quarreling and fighting each other.” One of his friends looked up and asked, “Which one wins?” His reply was, “Whichever one I give in to.” Isn’t this the way it is? We give into – cave into – fear.
I wanted a good biblical example of how to face our fears and decided on David and the story about the giant Goliath. Fear grows and can become a giant unless decapitated. For forty days, a champion giant of a man named Goliath intimidated and taunted the people of God. Fear intimidates us and taunts us. Goliath had destroyed many. Fear destroys many. Goliath challenged someone to come fight him one-on-one until death. This is how we must see fear. It will challenge us until death.
[1 Samuel 17:11] On hearing the Philistine’s words, Saul and all the Israelites WERE DISMAYED AND TERRIFIED.
This is what fear does. It intimidates, dismays (saddens), and terrifies. It is a giant challenging you to a fight. Every morning the people of God would go out with a “war cry” only to coward down and fear Goliath (1Sa 17:20). How many Christ followers do this? David’s father sent David to take supplies to his older brothers who were in the army. Upon arriving, David found his brothers and at this time, Goliath walked out and belched his threats.
[1 Samuel 17:24] When the Israelites saw the man, THEY ALL RAN FROM HIM IN GREAT FEAR.
King Saul had offered a reward of great wealth, his daughter in marriage, and exemption from taxes to the man who would face Goliath, but none would. There are always great rewards from facing and defeating fear. As you know, David took the challenge and faced fear. Let’s draw a few applicable principles from this story.
DO NOT ALLOW PEOPLE TO DISCOURAGE YOU.
[1 Samuel 17:28 – 33] When Eliab, David’s oldest brother, heard him speaking with the men, he burned with anger at him… Saul replied, “You are not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a boy…”
There will always be those who naysay and try to keep you from facing your fears. Relatives (Eliab) and people we admire (King Saul) have the greatest influence. They tried to stop David, but they could not. They point out you are too young or too old, not educated enough, to short or too tall, etc. Those who discourage you from facing your fears have never faced their fears just as Eliab and Saul refused to face Goliath.
[1 Samuel 17:37] The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” Saul said to David, “Go, and the LORD be with you.”
David was prepared spiritually and mentally. Years ago a farmer owned land along the Atlantic seacoast and was looking for someone to work for him. Finally, a short, thin man, well past middle age, came and asked for the job. The owner asked, “Are you a good farmhand?” “Well, I can sleep when the wind blows,” answered the little man. Although puzzled by this answer, the farmer, desperate for help, hired him. The little man worked well and the farmer was satisfied with the man’s work. One night a storm began blowing in. The wind howled loudly. The farmer grabbed a lantern and rushed next door to the hired hand’s sleeping quarters. He shook the little man and yelled, “Get up! A storm is coming! Tie things down before they blow away!” The little man rolled over in bed and said firmly, “No sir. I told you, I can sleep when the wind blows.” Enraged by the response, the farmer was tempted to fire him on the spot. Instead, he hurried outside to prepare for the storm. To his amazement, he discovered all of the haystacks were covered with tarpaulins. The cows were in the barn, the chickens were in the coops, and the doors barred. Everything was tied down. Nothing could blow away. The farmer then understood what his hired hand meant, so he returned to his bed and slept while the wind blew. The moral is when you are prepared, spiritually, mentally, and physically, you have nothing to fear. The wind will blow and Goliath will belch, but you know you are tied down and secure.
FACE FEAR ON YOUR TERMS.
[1 Samuel 17:38-39] Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on him… “I cannot go in these,” he said to Saul, “because I am not used to them.” So he took them off.
You are the one who decides how you will face your fear. Do it your way. God has given you the ability. Facing your fear will never be comfortable, but find the way most comfortable for you.
[1 Samuel 17:40] Then he took his staff in his hand, chose five smooth stones from the stream, put them in the pouch of his shepherd’s bag and, with his sling in his hand, approached the Philistine.
I was thinking about this. You know, really, a sword and a spear is no match for a sling. David never intended to go hand-to-hand with Goliath. He had superior weapons.
[2 Corinthians 10:4] (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)
We have superior weapons if we will but trust them (prayer, gifts of the Spirit, forgiveness, positive confession, giving, etc.). It may only take one, but pick up five.
SPEAK TO YOUR GOLIATH.
[1 Samuel 17:46] This day the LORD will hand you over to me, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head…
David did exactly what Jesus told us to do in Mark 11:23. We are to speak to our mountains. You need to speak to your fear. Tell it what you are going to do to it. There is power in your words. Words set the course of life.
[Proverbs 18:21] Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.
TOTALLY DESTROY YOUR FEAR.
[1 Samuel 17:51] David ran and stood over him. He took hold of the Philistine’s sword and drew it from the scabbard. AFTER HE KILLED HIM, HE CUT OFF HIS HEAD with the sword…
David killed his giant fear with the sling, but made certain the fear would never bother him again. David never had to face Goliath again. Do not miss the fact of how defeating his fear made David wealthy, he never paid taxes, and he married “up.” A shepherd boy married the daughter of a king. Facing his fear forever changed David’s life and gave him direction to his destiny. The once shepherd boy became the king of Israel. We never know how facing and totally destroying one fear will forever change our lives.
Other Related Sermons:
Katherine Ann Porter, Ship of Fools. Christianity Today, Vol. 31, no. 2.
Christian Cheong, How to Starve Your Fears to Death