Overcoming Fear, Anxiety & Stress
The Bible says in I John 4:18, "perfect love (trust), cast out fear." Much of the fear, anxiety and stress that works in our lives is the fruit of not being loved, protected and nurtured as children by parents.
When our parents are not a safe refuge for us, we are opened up to a deep fear and mistrust of God and all authority that we carry into adulthood and to our grave if we do not find deliverance. Because parents model for us a picture of what God is like and because we think He is like our parents, we fail to seek refuge in Him and find refuge in other things, substances, people and ourselves, etc. Finding refuge in anything else other than God is idolatry. Being outside of His refuge in any given area is at the root of all fear, anxiety and stress in our lives.
Failure to come into God's refuge which produces "rest" and is "the perfect love that casts out fear" is at the root of all autoimmune diseases and the majority of our physical problems.
God told the children of Israel that they must possess the promised land which meant "rest". In Hebrews 4, God tells us believers we are to enter His rest through possessing our spiritual land (I Cor. 3:9; I Cor. 10:1-10). HEB 4:2 For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they (the Children of Israel) also; but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard.
HEB 4:3 For we who have believed enter that rest, just as He has said, "As I swore in My wrath, They shall not enter My rest," although His works were finished from the foundation of the world.
HEB 4:6 Since, therefore, it remains for some to enter it, and those who formerly had good news preached to them failed to enter because of disobedience,
HEB 4:7 He again fixes a certain day, "Today," saying through David after so long a time just as has been said before, "Today if you hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts."
HEB 4:9 There remains therefore a Sabbath rest for the people of God.
HEB 4:10 For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His.
HEB 4:11 Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall through following the same example of disobedience.
Of course, the way we enter His rest today is through "taking upon ourselves the yoke of Jesus". To do that, we must be willing to crucify our flesh to make Him our refuge and trust. In MAT 11:28-30 Jesus says, "Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My load is light."
His load is easy and His load is light. Any other yoke is grueling, annoying, vexing, chafing and causes us to live in a state of unrest. You know you have His yoke on when you are at peace and rest. It is a curse to live in a state of unrest. DEU 28:65 "And among those nations you shall find no rest, and there shall be no resting place for the sole of your foot; but there the Lord will give you a trembling heart, failing of eyes, and despair of soul.
Approximately 344 times in the Word of God it says to "fear not" or words related to "fearing not". Many times we overlook the fact that fear is a sin and excuse it by saying, "Oh, that is just the way I am". "Be anxious for nothing" is not an option but a command (Phil. 4:6).
Some things we need to understand about fear:
- it is faith in what the devil says rather than what God says.
- it is unbelief and like faith demands a response.
- it keeps us from possessing our land and entering His rest (Num. 13;Heb. 4:1-3; 5-11).
- it comes out of a defiled conscience (failures of parents to nurture and protect) (I Jn. 3:21).
- it subjects us to slavery all our lives (Heb. 2:15).
- it comes out of rebellion (spirit of slavery Rom. 8:15).
- it involves punishment (I Jn. 4:18).
- it is idolatry (Rom. 6:16).
- it causes us to bury our talent (Mt. 25:25).
- it is a curse (Lev. 6:15,17,36, 37; Deut. 28:15,66; Gal. 3:10).
- it opens us up to receive what we fear (Jb. 3:25).
- it must be conquered to be an overcomer in Christ Jesus (Num. 13, 14; Rev. 3:5; 1JO 5:4) and to have our prayers answered (JOH 15:7 "If you abide (obey/rest) in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you).
It is possible and is God's will that we live free of fear. Fear is just like any other sin we can be delivered from. God never tells us to do anything that He has not made provision for at the cross of Calvary. If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (I Jn. 1:9)
Deliverance will come as we:
- Repent of our own idolatry in each area of fear.
- Forgive our parents for their poor stewardship of us.
- Break the judgments we made against them for childhood traumas and their failures,
- Renounce the lie we received that God is like our parents.
- Take accountability for our wrong responses
- Ask the Spirit of God to come into those areas of defilement and heal the pain and sadness which opened us up to fear and
- Ask Him to cleanse our consciences from all defilement that came in through our substituting a false god/gods for the TRUE AND LIVING GOD.
- Break negative soul ties with parents and whoever or whatever we trusted in the place of Jesus.
When you can do as Abraham did with his son, Isaac, and take your fears (idols) up the mountain and lay them on God's altar, you are saying, "God, I trust you so much with my life that I know you know what I need; you know what it takes or doesn't take in my life to bring about Your greatest glory and my highest good. Total surrender is the perfect love (trust) that casts out all fear. HALLELUJAH!
Used with Permission, copyright © 2002 by Geri McGhee, Abiding Life Ministries