“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity…” 2 Timothy 1:7 NLT
This scripture was written to Timothy, Paul’s protege in ministry. He was young and had the task of overseeing a network of churches established by Paul. I believe, Timothy was focusing on the magnitude of his assignment as the Bishop-elect and overseer. He started to size up the assignment with what he could be lacking- age; he was young, nationality; he wasn’t considered a real Jew because his father was a Gentile (non-Jew) yet his mum was. Israel identified your nationality by patrilineal lineage not matrilineal and a host of other things. Perhaps, he looked at his assignment and was cowering in fear. It took the pen of a mighty apostle to charge Timothy through this opus, “God has not given you the spirit of fear…”
Like Timothy, maybe you live in fear because you don’t see yourself to be cut out for the job, perhaps you are focusing too much on what you don’t have rather than what you have. Timothy had what it took despite his “loud weaknesses”. He knew the Bible- very adept at it because of his mother and grandmother. He had been mentored by Paul, one of the influential game changers of his day, he also had experience- wasn’t a novice yet he felt inadequate because of fear
May I encourage you reader, that you don’t have to live this way- always in fear. Like I promised, I want us to look at some few negative implications fear can impact on us:
- Fear will stop you from exercising your fullest potential
There is a story in the Bible in Matthew 25:14-30 about a man who gave his three servants talents of 5, 2 and 1 respectively. A talent was a sum of money in those days. It could be gold weighing about 200 pounds (91 kg) or silver weighing 100 pounds (45 kg). The two servants multiplied their money by investing whilst the last servant with the one talent didn’t. On the day of reckoning, when the master saw them again for review, check the last servant’s response in verse 25:
“I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look, here is your money back.”
Wow! Fear kept him from investing money in diverse financial portfolios for a handsome dividend. Although this was in the context of finances, this same story speaks why many haven’t maximized their fullest potential. Why haven’t you written that book? Why haven’t you taken that test? Is it because it will be your third time taking it after failing the previous two? Why have you skipped that interview for that job offer? Are you having flashbacks of the last one you “bombed”? Let me probe further by asking why is that huge sum of money sitting in your savings account accruing next to nothing interest whilst you can invest it? Are you afraid because of the “other side” of the investment stories?
Fear is torturous and will hinder your progress in maximizing yourself
2. Fear will make you see things in a negative light
Your perspective changes from positive to that of a negative one. You start having suspicions about everyone and everything. You will be experiencing borderline paranoia. One bad experience can make you label that thing bad for the rest of your life. One broken-hearted relationship can make you label relationships as bad in general, one bad business deal turning sour can make you label all businesses and businessmen as crooks. One bad experience with religion can make you term it as brainwashed and mind control freaks. When you see a person constantly talking about the negative out of every positive, he lives in fear and is afraid. Before the servant admitted he was afraid, look at his perspective of his master:
“Then the servant with the one bag of silver came and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a harsh man, harvesting crops you didn’t plant and gathering crops you didn’t cultivate”
Fear made him see his master as a tormentor instead of a mentor. The master wasn’t wicked because the first two never talked about him that way or saw him in that light. I know you might have had challenges in your work this past month. Maybe, just maybe, could you change the perspective of how you see your boss or supervisor? That might be the only necessary adjustment needed to enjoy your place of work. The negative perception of your boss is grounded and rooted in fear. So before you cast the stone of aspersion at him or her, please ask yourself this question after reading this post, “what am I afraid of?”. I am not saying every challenge in your workplace has to do with perspective. Sometimes, you do have a toxic work environment and a boss who stifles potential, the best option might be to look for another job and exit gracefully with honor. Howbeit, living in fear breeds negativity. Fearful people have negative energy and vibes surrounding them
3. Fear kills
“… Since fear is crippling, a fearful life—fear of death, fear of judgment…” 1 John 4:18 MSG
From the quote, living in fear cripples. You die before you really die! You can’t enjoy life. You are always at the mercy of your greatest fear. It is said there are 100 compiled list of phobias- from Acheivemephobia (fear of success) to Zoophobia (fear of animals).
- Fear affects you physically- difficulty in breathing, pounding heart…
- Fear affects you emotionally- fear of losing control and going crazy, anxiety attacks and panic
- Fear affects you spiritually- it opens the doors to demons and demonic activities
If something as dreadful as fear affects you physically, emotionally and spiritually; the implication is an early grave.
You don’t have to live this way. I end with this quote:
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity”
Till I come your way again
Peace & Love