by Angela Martin

“Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.” – 1 John 4:18 (NLT)

Fear happens to every woman at some time in her life. You may wake up late because your alarm didn’t go off. Instantaneous panic as you wonder if you will be late to work and what will the boss say. Or you get every mom’s worst nightmare in the form of a phone call from someone close to you who says, “I’ve got some bad news”. Worry comes flooding in. Or a medical prognosis seems to take away your dreams and future at the same time. Or your kids are starting to go in the wrong direction and you can’t seem to reach them. These can be times that sap our influence and our walk with God.

Being afraid can become standard operating procedure if we let it. But I don’t want my life to be controlled by fear. When faced with critical moments fueled by fear I look at biblical examples of people dealing with their own fears. Like Joshua who was given the opportunity to lead the entire nation of Israel after Moses passed away. He already had a history of seeing past the present obstacles and fears that could have blinded him to something greater beyond. In these few sentences we find the flip side of fear: “Be strong and very courageous. …Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:7-9

When fear fills our hearts and minds, there’s essentially no room for anything else. If we let it rule us, it can become a way of life. It’s like standing within reach of a light switch, but choosing to leave the room dark. Fear is the opposite of trust. And we have a God who is completely trustworthy. His record is clear. He keeps every promise. Faith can conquer your fears.

Think of the things that cause you fear and stress. Is there anything you’ve come up with that’s too big for God to handle? Anything that’s too tough for Him? A health issue? He created your body. Financial stresses? He owns everything. A schedule out of control? He holds time in His hands. Family members or friends in trouble? He knows them inside out. Whatever the challenge, the Father loves you and He desires to shoulder the burden for you. 1 Peter 5:7 tells us: “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”

There are times where fear grips us and as a result we feel like we are stumbling through life. We try to do our best for God, but still often feeling like there is a long way to go before we are a godly woman. Living focused on Jesus is something I always want to be better at. To become a more godly woman with Him at the center of everything I do.

Discussion Questions:

  1. As a child, what was one of your greatest fears? What helped you to cope?
  2. How do you deal with fear in your life?
  3. In what ways does your fear imprison you? Describe what your life could be like without your fear.
  4. How can we help those who are struggling with fear?
  5. Pray and meditate on facing the fears that God is asking you to face.