From Paralyzing Fear to FEARLESS
Beautiful Younger Soul,
Fear. It’s such a small word that weighs on your life like a ton of bricks. I know how the fear you’ve experienced has crippled and paralyzed you. I have seen how you’ve lived most of your life afraid of everything. You’ve heard all of your life, “fear is false evidence appearing real”, which to you has felt real. I understand and believe you. Fear to you is not just false evidence, to you fear is real. There were times that fear paralyzed you in your tracks and didn’t allow you to move forward. Fear stopped you from doing activities and even enjoying yourself.
Some of your first memories as a child are of you being scared and afraid of the dark and what was luring outside. As a child, you had a very vivid imagination. You soaked up everything that you heard and you believed everything you saw on television. After all, if it’s on television, it must mean it’s true, right? In 1993, the movie “Jurassic Park” came out in theatres and people loved it. While your family enjoyed the movie, you were crying in your seat and scared to the core. You believed that the dinosaurs would come out of the television and eat you right there and then. Since you were so scared, your parents sent you to your room to sleep. You did not sleep. You were wide awake thinking that if you fell asleep, the dinosaur would come find you and eat you during your sleep. So, you stayed awake all night long. The problem wasn’t that you were fully awake all night, but that you wet the bed. It’s shameful to say it, but fear stopped you from going to the bathroom because you believed that as soon as you stepped out of the room, the dinosaur would eat you like he did to the man in the bathroom scene in the movie. I know it might sound funny to a lot of people and your family was disgusted by it, but the truth was you were so scared that you’d rather wet yourself than go to the bathroom. After that night, any time you watched news reports on UFOs, folktales, or any movie that scared you, you stayed awake throughout the night and wet the bed.
Fear began to affect you in school and during the day. You were afraid of the teacher. They couldn’t call your name because you’d begin to shake and tremble, and sometimes even cry. It was so bad that you couldn’t concentrate because you kept thinking, “what if the teacher calls my name?” At the end of first grade, your report card said you were a bright young girl with huge potential, but your “nerves” and “fears” stopped you from reaching that full potential. Your mother tried to talk to you and began teaching you to be brave and sure of yourself. Instead of believing your mother and moving past your fear, you began to wet yourself during the day. Everything scared you. Asking for permission to do something scared you. Your parents calling your name scared you. Animals scared you. Stairs and heights scared you. Loud noises scared you. Everything, and I mean everything, scared you. There wasn’t a thing on earth that didn’t scare you.
Wetting yourself added a layer of shame to your fearful heart. Kids made fun of you. Your parents and siblings were upset with you. Adults called you names so you tried your best to hide away your fear because you were ashamed of yourself. You were able to control your bladder movements and you stopped wetting yourself so everyone thought that you had overcome fear. The truth was that you hid it away because you were ashamed of yourself.
As a teenager and even an adult, fear has stopped you from living and reaching your full potential. Everyone thought you were a “nervous” and “shy” person, but the truth was that you were a fearful person. Being deemed as “nervous” and “shy” rather than fearful was a better option for you. You slapped on that label and lived there. However, there were nights where you couldn’t sleep, not because you were afraid of the dark, but because you were afraid that something terrible could happen in the middle of the night, and if you were sleeping, you wouldn’t be able to react on time. There were other times where you would have nightmares that would scare you to your core. Instead of sleeping, you stayed awake studying. It was a great alibi for your tiredness the next day. You found multiple ways to make excuses for your fear. Actually, you became an expert at hiding away your fear.
Eventually, you had to come to terms with that fear my dear Young Soul. For me, it came one day after someone described me as “brave”. I laughed at the thought of someone thinking of me as “brave” when I was afraid of many, many things. How could I be brave? If they only truly knew me, they would know that I was faking it until I made it. However, the following year, it seemed that everywhere I turned, I kept hearing the words “fear not”, “brave” or “fearless”. Someone sent me “May He grant you out of the rich treasury of His glory to be strengthened and reinforced with mighty power in the inner man by the [Holy] Spirit [Himself indwelling your innermost being and personality]” Ephesians 3:16 (AMPC) and the song “Be Still” by Hillsong. Part of the lyrics say, “I won't be afraid if You are here, You silence all my fear. I won't be afraid, You don't let go, be still my heart and know. I won't be afraid”. When I heard the song, I knew God was telling me to turn over my fears to Him because He will silence them all. At first, I didn’t understand what the verse meant, but then, I realized that God wanted to empower me with inner strength that would come from Him. My inner self lived in constant fear. My inner self needed to be strengthened by God because as His Word says in 2 Timothy 1:7 (ESV), “for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” I was given “fearless” as my word for the year. God showed me that being “fearless” didn’t mean not being afraid, being “fearless” was truly dependent on Him. He will make me “brave” because it’s not in my strength, but in His strength and power.
One day, I asked my mother and sister why I was so afraid when all of them were so brave. Both of them said that it wasn’t that I was fearful, but that I had believed the lie that I was fearful, and because I believed it, I had carried it with me all my life. At that moment, I knew I had to ask for prayer. Overcoming fear included breaking the shame and lies of the enemy. Finally, after 28 years of living in fear, I went through a deliverance prayer and my life began to change. The truth is, there are days that fear wants to creep in and paralyze me, but I’m reminded that God is with me “fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” Isaiah 41:10 (ESV). He is with me, and as the song “No Longer Slaves” by Bethel says, “I’m no longer slave to fear, I am a child of God”. I am a child of God and He has me in the palm of His hands.
My dear Younger Soul, I know your fear is real and it feels big and overwhelming, but God is bigger and He wants to free you from your fears that have enslaved you for years. He wants to strengthen your inner self and make you “brave” and “fearless” through His Spirit. Trust Him. He will give you the strength and power you need to face your fears and tell them, “I’m no longer slave to fear, I’m more than a conqueror.”
Older & Much Wiser You
“May He grant you out of the rich treasury of His glory to be strengthened and reinforced with mighty power in the inner man by the [Holy] Spirit [Himself indwelling your innermost being and personality]”
Ephesians 3:16 (AMPC)