When Fear and Worry Possess You
In part one of this series, you were introduced to the first master of the mind – the Whiner. While the Whiner keeps you looking over your shoulder, wallowing in lifelong laments from your past, this second master has you focusing forward into the face of fear in order to scare you right out of your own future. Meet the Worrier.
The Worrier lives in the land of “what if….” It fuels uncertainly with images of failure, danger, disaster, and doom. It carries a quiver of possibilities for all that could go wrong and desires to pierce a person’s hope, confidence, and trust in the goodness of GOD.
The Worrier often masquerades as “wisdom” or “common sense.” But its weapon is negative goal setting. Instead of dreaming about what you want or what can be, the Worrier promotes potential problems. While the Whiner complains, “life’s not fair,” the Worrier bewails, “life’s not safe.” Its obsession is to feel in control, where “risk” is considered a dirty word.
Like the Whiner, the Worrier can become the master of your mind if you constantly yield to its invasive voice. It reigns by building a subconscious habit of entertaining fear, stress, and anxiety that become your first response in thought, action, or emotion. The Worrier wants you to underestimate your God-given potential and underlive Jesus’ promise of abundant life. It destroys your dreams and derails GOD’s destiny calling for you.
A mentor of mine was known to say, “It’s okay to get afraid; it’s just not okay to stay afraid.” In other words, the emotion of fear is not the sin; partnering with the fear is. When you follow in the council of the Worrier, the constant diet of potential problems consumes your perspective, and faith is diminished.
Peace, on the other hand, is the product of an abiding posture toward God. It’s the outward manifestation of trusting in the truth of the Word rather than the lies of the Worrier. The Worrier wins when it can infect your heart and inflict your thinking.
But the Worrier can’t withstand the person who continually washes in the refreshing Word of God because fear is inferior to faith. The Worrier is wounded when we declare the life-sustaining promises of the one who came to demolish death and crush the head of the enemy. The amazing grace of God infuses us, not with a spirit of fear and timidity but, with a Spirit of power, love, and a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7).
1 John 4:18 – “There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears had not been perfected in love.”
Philippians 4:6-7– “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
Joshua 1:9 – “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.”
John 14:27 – “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
Isaiah 41:10 – “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
Hebrews 13:6 – “So we can confidently say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?’”
The more you trust in God, the more you weaken the Worrier. The more you meditate on God’s promises, the more you develop a hope-filled future. The more you declare, “all things are possible to those who believe” (Mark 9:23), the more you agree you were made for victory in Christ Jesus.
The Worrier will rob you of your God-given inheritance if you let it. But through the renewing of your mind, you can retrain your brain to look with hope, peace, confidence and trust that your future is safe and secure in the hands of the one who made you, adores you, protects you, and designed you for good works which he prepared in advance for you to do (Ephesians 2:10).