We must fear God, and when we do that, He will help us remove the things that make us afraid in this life. But we do have to be all-in with Him.
We need to understand that fearing God doesn't mean to cower in fear because of His voice. It means to have a reverential fear of displeasing the God who loves us and whom we love in return.
Proverbs 15:33 (TPT) says, "The source of revelation-knowledge is found as you fall down in surrender before the Lord. Don't expect to see Shekinah glory until the Lord sees your sincere humility." I love this wording because it tells us what we need to do each day to receive revelation-knowledge or wisdom. We must revere God and not challenge Him. We fall down before Him in surrender.
This won't happen until we recognize who we are and who God is. We honor Him by humbling ourselves before Him and recognizing His power and ability to set us on the right path.
There is a category of fear we have as humans that I refer to as core fears. These are internal fears that are harder to recognize than things like fear of spiders or mice. One prevalent fear in this category is the fear of feeling abandoned and rejected. When we feel like don't have a voice and we aren't being heard, loved or valued, we will feel alone, separated and disconnected. We are afraid this will result in not being loved, losing love or being alone.
Another big one is the fear of being controlled, stepped on or manipulated by others. It is the fear of losing whatever power we think we have. Along with this usually comes the fear of failure and being cast aside, not seen, abused or mistreated.
Both of these can result in a feeling a loss of meaning, purpose and identity. We are struggling through life without really knowing why we are here in the first place.
Identifying our core fear may explain a lot of things to us and help us begin to move past any childhood moments which might have been the start of that fear.
My Core Fear
My core fear, at once, was not being in control. When I was a child, I was molested by a family friend in my grandma's house, which was my safe haven. I told no one because I thought they would take the older man's side and wouldn't believe me. I don't know if that would have been true or not. Then, I made the decision as an 11-year-old that I couldn't count on anyone else to protect me, so I had to protect myself.
That resulted in me spending the majority of my life being in control, in charge, so I would know what was going on. I didn't want any surprises. I didn't want to be blindsided again. I didn't know I was allowing a core fear to drive my life.
Then, one day, I heard Joyce Meyer tell her story of being abused over and over again by her father and how forgiving him finally set her free. That day, I accepted her invitation to forgive my abuser. That helped me move past the fear of seeing that man in my dreams looming as a monster. I could finally see him in his weakness.
Moving Past Fear
It took many more years until I understood that because that man was like a father figure, I didn't trust any men who were in control or appeared to be manipulative. Unfortunately, I put Father God in that category too because I saw Him as one who would control me, and I didn't trust anyone in control.
Not trusting Father God fully meant I was still trying to self-protect. I didn't really see God as my protector. My core fear was that I was alone and had to navigate life by myself. When I understood that my mistrust of certain types of men also carried over to Father God, I was able to renounce the lie that God won't protect me, won't cover me, won't be there when I need Him, won't be my refuge and stronghold.
When I asked Him His truth, He told me I was His precious child, and He would always protect me. Then, I was able to begin to release having to micromanage every single detail of my life. It freed me to allow others to do things, while I honed in on what I did best and what my purpose really is.
Healthy Living Issues
It was also my core fear that had been driving me to self-protect by allowing myself to keep eating. The evil one was whispering in my ear things like, "If you eat these things, then bad men won't come on to you. It doesn't matter if you eat all that food and gain weight; at least you are making yourself unattractive to men who might want to do bad things to you."
Identifying the place where this fear started, forgiving the person involved, renouncing the lie that God will treat me the same way and hearing God whisper His truth to me set me free from my core fear in a profound way and has allowed me to lose over 250 pounds and keep it off since 2013.
Core fears can be anything like not feeling safe being yourself, not feeling good enough, feeling like you are bad or a failure, feeling worthless, feeling you don't fit in anywhere and like you are crazy, feeling ashamed, feeling unseen, feeling unvalued, feeling you have nothing worthwhile in you.
Surrender to God
There is one thing that will help us eradicate our fears. However, to get there, we first have to fear and reverence God by fully surrendering to Him.
This is not just lip service. It's action. For many years, every time I was unsatisfied with myself and wanted to lose weight, I'd tell God, "OK, I'm giving up sugar." It was what I knew He wanted me to do and had told me to do many times, but I hadn't done it because I didn't want to give it up. I had good intentions, but I hadn't totally surrendered my addiction to God.
I hadn't fallen on my face in surrender. I hadn't humbled myself before God and admitted my weakness and my inability to handle processed sugar. I had made a nod toward surrender, hoping that would work. A nod or one step in never works because God knows the difference between a fall-on-your face, total surrender to Him in abject humility and poverty of mind, heart and soul and a nod toward it.
All-In With God
God will lead us past our fears when we are ready to humble ourselves and ask for His help. Today, there is one thing that absolutely scares me and that is being disobedient to what God is telling me and calling me to do. I choose obedience.
When we go all-in with God, we start in motion an unstoppable season of blessings that He just keeps on pouring out on us. Without total submission to God, without trusting Him with everything, without releasing everything we think we have to have to the one who has the abundance of the universe, His blessings won't flow into our lives.
Being all-in with God means to fear and reverence Him instead of being afraid of the fears of this life that seek to control us. Surrender that thing you've been holding back just for yourself and watch fears begin to crumble and blessings begin to flow.
This article first appeared on teresashieldsparker.com.
Teresa Shields Parker is the author of six books and two study guides, including her No. 1 bestseller, Sweet Grace: How I Lost 250 Pounds. Her sixth book, Sweet Surrender: Breaking Strongholds, is live on Amazon. She blogs at teresashieldsparker.com. She is also a Christian weight loss coach (check out her coaching group at Overcomers Academy) and speaker. Don't miss her podcast, Sweet Grace for Your Journey, available on CPN.
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