We can cower to fear or stand firm on God’s truth.
I met today’s guest about a month ago at a writing conference, and we connected relatively quickly. Working on final edits for Dancing in the Rain, a novel with a blind main character attempting to navigate her way to independence (and being a woman, as grown as I am, who’s afraid of the dark, uncertainty, and change), I had recently begun to see my world differently, as the sight-impaired might. And I marveled at the strength one like Loni and Jena Fellers must have to not only survive in this busy, chaotic, rapid-paced world, but thrive and fully live for Jesus, no matter the challenges.
So, I asked Jena, a woman who’s done just that, if she’d share her thoughts on fear. I know you’ll be as encouraged as I was.
But first, I need to share a new law or requirement bloggers have encountered–one I’m still attempting to figure out. I imagine this is to counter spamming and intended to protect all of you. You can read more HERE, but if I understand correctly, I need to send all my subscribers a message re-inviting them to subscribe and letting them know precisely how their information will be used. (In other words, that by subscribing to my blog, you will receive blog posts–and your info will not be used for anything else.) My brain is still trying to process it all, but apparently, I must be in full compliance within 3 days. Prayers appreciated!
Now for today’s inspirational message:
How Truth Expels Fear
by Jena Fellers
“Mommy, there’s a monster in my closet!”
Fear seizes us at a young age. It first invaded mankind in the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve disobeyed God’s command by eating fruit from the Tree of Knowledge. Their eyes were opened to good and, evil. . .raising a new awareness. Afraid of God, they hid. (Genesis 3)
Ever since, the devil has put many fears in man’s mind:
* loneliness and abandonment
* spiders, snakes, and mice
* accidents, and natural disasters
* failure, or success
* death, or losses
Fears will come, but God gave us a tool to defeat it–His Word. With Scripture, fear can flee as fast as lightening bolts strike.
God’s Word worked for me back in college. I suffered from night blindness and tunnel vision, courtesy of Retinitis Pigmentosa. Knowing His protective power from reading the Bible comforted me. I could stroll alone after night classes without fearing muggers, sexual predators, or stray animals.
The funny thing is, nothing scared me, but it’s close relative, worry, consumed me. I felt anxious about:
* passing tests
* hiring assistants
* accessibility to courses
I learned worry is the opposite of faith and didn’t want to disappoint my Heavenly Father by not trusting Him. Proverbs 3 :5 tells us to trust in the Lord and lean not on our own understanding.
Phil. 4:6 boldly states “Do not be anxious in anything…” In other words, we shouldn’t worry or be afraid. Those emotions steal God’s peace.
Years later, after losing all sight, I put this concept of trusting deeply in God and His Word into practice. On a Sunday evening, a storm blew in from nowhere.
The sunlight peered through our country home windows as the television announced a severe thunderstorm warning. My pastor husband chose to hold evening services since it should miss us.
Hail soon pounded our van. On the ride (over the phone), I attempted to calm family members who were afraid it was a tornado; not a thunderstorm. I was oblivious a rope-like tornado had started playing chicken with our van.
Realization dawned as Steve whipped in our church parking lot, told our daughter to run inside, grabbed me, and promptly laid me down next to the external wall. We prayed as his body covered mine, and the tornado struck the opposite side, spraying debris all around us.
I was amazed at the overwhelming peace I felt, especially learning the reason we stayed outside was because the wind had hurled a board directly at my head.
When praying, I focused on asking God for help, and peace. I concentrated on placing my complete trust in Him, regardless of the outcome. Trust is faith. It also helped knowing fear doesn’t come from God, but from satan. “For God gave us a spirit not of fear, but of power and love and self-control” (2 Timothy 1:7, ESV).
We don’t have to live enslaved to fearful thinking. According to Romans 12:2, we can renew our mind, and Phil. 4:8 tells us how.
Next time fear’s symptoms arise (nausea, shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, sweating, anger, or light-headedness), choose to stand on the truth of God’s Word. If you’re stubborn like me, then ask yourself whose report will you believe? You’re either believing a lie or God’s truth. Will you believe the lie trapped in your mind, or God’s Word?
We have the power to take every fearful thought captive, lock it up, and throw away the key. The choice is ours.
Let’s talk about this! What fears haunt you, and how do you fight it? What other verses are helpful
Get to Know Jena!
Jena Fellers walks by faith; not by sight. . . physically, and spiritually. Three adult children and four grandchildren fill her with joy. Serving alongside her husband, they have pastored Trinity Worship
Center in Baxter Springs, Kansas for twenty years. Having little to no vision hasn’t stopped her. They founded Word in Action Ministries in 2009. It rebuilds lives through feeding and more.. This year marks their millionth meal served – all without knowing where money, or help, would come. God truly provides.
Jena plays her flute on the praise and worship team, and teaches Children’s Church and Sunday school. Thanks to an affordable screen reader, Jena now pursues writing. She loves to excite, educate, and encourage others to follow Christ a little closer through speaking and blogging. Her first book, “Faith Footprints” is underway.
Visit her website HERE, follow her on Facebook HERE, and check out her ministry (cofounded) HERE.
For those who are local, make sure to join us for Wholly Loved’s next Bold and Brave Conference on June 23rd in Lincoln, Nebraska. You can find out more and register HERE.
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Speaking of freedom, I also invite you to read my latest Crosswalk article on 10 prayers that can help transform your finances. You can read it HERE.
I also invite you to visit Wholly Loved’s website to read about those fears that creep up on us and how we can fight them. You can do that HERE.
What a great post, Jena! The story of the tornado had me sitting on the edge of my seat, especially when I learned a piece of wood was hurtling for your head! Thank you both, ladies, for an excellent message!