Face Your Fears
In God, whose word I praise.
Psalm 56:3-4a (NIV)
It is crucial that you face your fears. Fear is common in difficult relationships. When other people do things that hurt and harm themselves, others, and you, it is natural to fear what may happen as a result. Some Christians believe fear is a sin, but it is not. David talked often in the Psalms about being afraid but trusting God in spite of it (Psalm 56:3). Fear is a God-given emotion meant to warn you of danger. It is a God-given basic survival mechanism that protects you by warning you to pay attention to what could be life-threatening.
Fear instinctively causes you to freeze, fight, or flee. Even though these responses to fear are natural, they become problematic when you are stuck in them too long. The freezing keeps you from responding to the situation in ways that are necessary to take care of yourself. The fighting keeps you reacting to the situation in ways that tend to be unproductive and sustain and exacerbate the dysfunction. The fleeing keeps you from facing the problems head-on since you are running away from them.
You need to learn how to face your fear of the following:
- The other person’s reaction
- Change and the unknown
- Loss of financial and material things
- Loss of the relationship
- Being alone
- Being out of God’s will
- Regret that comes from making the wrong decisions
- Things staying the same indefinitely
- Having “it” happen again
- Physical harm to yourself and others
- Disapproval from other people
These fears can be exaggerated but are not unreasonable for most difficult relationships. But even though they may be realistic, the fears have to be faced; otherwise, they will keep you stuck in unhealthy patterns. Second Timothy 1:7 says, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” (NKJV). A spirit of fear keeps you in a perpetual state of being overwhelmed by the fear. It is the fear that drives you, rather than your wise decisions made with a sound mind and acted upon through the power of God.
Fear also manifests as anxiety. “Anxiety” is a sense of distress or unease. Difficult relationships are full of distress and unease. Because of this, both people respond to the anxiety by reacting rather than acting. Managing that reactivity is crucial if you want to be able to calm things down in the relationship and your own life.
This Christian relationship help presents a simple formula to deal with fear and anxiety by making them a positive life-changing force rather than a destructive force. Learn how to face your fears with this Relationship-Changing Principle.