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Living Free From Fear

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Posts Tagged ‘LiveFearless’

339. No mo’ FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)

Posted by John Smith on June 16, 2017

John 14:16 NKJV  And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever—

One might think that nomophobia is being free from fear and having No-Mo-phobia… but it is actually the fear of being without your mobile device.  It is one of the fastest growing fears and anxieties in our culture.  Studies have shown that about 66 percent of adults feel extreme anxiety if they lose connection with their mobile device.  Before we start spending too much time on discussing this phenomenon let’s just jump to the root of the fear. People are afraid of being out contact… perhaps FOMO (fear of missing out) is partly to blame too.  But people increasingly become anxious the longer they are out of contact or the ability to be out of contact with others.

This phenomenon leads us to isolate and be alone even when together because we feel we must keep up on what is going on so we don’t miss out.  In reality we end up missing out on present opportunities to connect, laugh, and live life with others.  Don’t let FOMO steal from you and what you can have right now.  In John 14:16, Jesus said the Holy Spirit is with the Believer all the time.  Hebrews 13:5 tells us that He will never leave us.  You are never alone.  With the Holy Spirit with you, you are never alone and you are never missing out.  It’s ok to check your social media from time to time, but don’t let FOMO keep you from experiencing all that God has for you through a living and vital relationship with the ONE friend who you can always utterly depend on.  You don’t have to miss out on anything in life when you pull in close to the Holy Spirit, who desires to make sure you walk in and possess everything that Christ died for you to have.  Through your relationship with Him you can have no mo’ FOMO.

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338. Rejoice and Fear Not; Fear Not and Rejoice

Posted by John Smith on June 9, 2017

John 12:15 NKJV  “FEAR NOT, DAUGHTER OF ZION; BEHOLD, YOUR KING IS COMING, SITTING ON A DONKEY’S COLT.”

This verse quoted by John from Zechariah 9:9 indicating a prophecy regarding the Messiah was fulfilled as Jesus entered Jerusalem the last time prior to His crucifixion at what many refer to as the triumphant entry.  This verse is interesting because in Zechariah 9:9 God’s people are told to “Rejoice greatly” but John quotes it as FEAR NOT.  You see you can’t be in fear when your rejoicing greatly in victory.

The Hebrew word rejoice used in Zechariah 9:9 means to spin around violently under the influence of a powerful emotion (Strong’s) either great excitement or fear.  Context from the previous verses in Zechariah 9 talks about great deliverance from their oppressors who will no longer pass through.  This is a glorious freedom that was prophesied would come and did come in Christ Jesus.  No longer would sin oppress God’s people for it would be dealt with in Christ.  No longer would the law exact judgement upon His people, because it would be fulfilled in Him.  No longer would the fear of death oppress them for Jesus would deliver them from that bondage (Hebrews 2:15).  They would rejoice greatly because they would be delivered from all reason to fear.  This is why John quotes Zechariah 9:9 as Fear Not.

We are to rejoice greatly because Jesus has come and delivered us from anything that would try to terrorize us.  Our King has come and set up His throne in the midst of our hearts by His Spirit.  Meanwhile, He is physically sitting on the Throne in Heaven at the right hand of the Father, where we are reigning and ruling with Him as joint heirs with Christ (Ephesians 2:6; Romans 8:17).  So rejoice and fear not.  Fear not and rejoice.  Either way you look at it they go hand and hand because the King has come and has set us free.

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329. I Fear Therefore I am Fearless

Posted by John Smith on April 7, 2017

Luke 5:26 NKJV  And they were all amazed, and they glorified God and were filled with fear, saying, “We have seen strange things today!”

Luke 7:16 NKJV  Then fear came upon all, and they glorified God, saying, “A great prophet has risen up among us”; and, “God has visited His people.”

Luke 8:25 NKJV  But He said to them, “Where is your faith?” And they were afraid, and marveled, saying to one another, “Who can this be? For He commands even the winds and water, and they obey Him!”

Luke 8:35-37 NKJV  Then they went out to see what had happened, and came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid.  (36)  They also who had seen it told them by what means he who had been demon-possessed was healed.  (37)  Then the whole multitude of the surrounding region of the Gadarenes asked Him to depart from them, for they were seized with great fear. And He got into the boat and returned.

In each of these Scriptures people became overwhelmed with the only good kind of fear… a holy one.  In Luke 5:26 they saw a paralyzed man walk carrying the stretcher he was lowered through the roof on.  In Luke 7:16 Holy fear fell upon all present when Jesus raised a widow’s only son from the dead.  In Luke 8:25 the disciples were overcome with fear after Jesus calmed the wind and the waves.  Then in Luke 8:35-37 we see town overcome with fear after Jesus delivered a demonized man.

These of these examples that left people in Holy awe and fear of the awesomeness of our Lord.  They show His power, compassion, mercy, and authority.  Each of them provide us with examples why we needn’t live in any fear other than one produced from getting a revelation of just how marvelous and mighty our Lord is.  It is that revelation of just who He is and how deep His love for you and me is that causes us to sense that Holy Fear.  It is also how we know He has freed us from fear and we no longer have to be afraid.  It is our Holy Fear that leads us to live fearless.  I fear therefore I am fearless.

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326. You Don’t Have to Respond in Fear

Posted by John Smith on March 17, 2017

53035-cheer-up-its-fridayLuke 2:48 NLT  His parents didn’t know what to think. “Son,” His mother said to Him, “why have You done this to us? Your father and I have been frantic, searching for You everywhere.”

Now I want you do go back and read that verse again keeping in mind that Jesus’ mom and step-dad have been looking for him for 3 days now.  I can imagine what their voices would have sounded like.  I’m sure they were filled with relief, excitement, as well as a bit of confusion, frustration, anger, and probably a bit gravelly from having searching the streets calling out for him day and night.  They had to have been terrified.

As a son in this situation… I too would have been terrified.  I would have been terrified that my daddy was gonna ream me out good and that I’d be getting some kind of punishment.  Some kids would have copped an attitude and said, “Chill mom, I’m good. I don’t need you looking out for me, I can take care of myself.”  Some kids like me would have been horrified of either punishment or in my case that my parents would be gravely disappointed in me and respond either profusely apologetic or like I imagine I would have been solemn, sincere and offer a horrified apology.  Yet Jesus wasn’t either of those.  Jesus didn’t respond in fear.

Jesus was confident and calm when He responded, “Why did you need to search? Didn’t you know that I must be in my Father’s House?”  He wasn’t afraid of losing His mother or step-dad’s approval of Him.  He neither pushed back with arrogance nor shuddered in fear.  He didn’t have to… He was confident in who He was and in His relationship with the Father.  It is our confidence in who we are in Him and in our relationship with the Father that secure us so we can always respond calmly and with confidence in any situation and never have to react or respond from fear.

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313. Who Can This Be?

Posted by John Smith on December 16, 2016

who_is_itMark 4:39-41 NKJV  Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.  (40)  But He said to them, “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?”  (41)  And they feared exceedingly, and said to one another, “Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?!”

When I talk with people about overcoming fear, I often stress a few “Fear Not” Scriptures where Father God revealed some very important reasons not to fear. “I am with you.” “I am for you.” “I am in you.” “I am faithful.” But none of those are very powerful unless you have a revelation of just who He is.  In Mark 4, the disciples were in a terrible storm and all natural evidence said that they were going to die until Jesus came to their rescue, rebuked the storm and brought peace to their situation.  Then the disciples were overcome with awe as they tried to process what just happened to them and get a grasp on the revelation of the reality of who Jesus is and the amazing power within Him.

One reason that they were afraid and why so many Christians today live in fear is because although we know about Jesus and believe He has given new life to us when we believed on Him, we still fail to see Him in the reality of His awesome nature.  Jesus IS God. (Psalm 45:6, Hebrews 1:8, John 1:1, Philippians 2:6, John 5:18, etc…)  “Amen!” we shout in our churches, while we cry “oh me” in our homes.  Because as much as we profess this as truth we struggle we often lose sight of His Nature in the midst of the storms of life.

The disciples wondered, “Who can this be?”  We must get a revelation of who Jesus is?  It will light a fire in our belly.  Then we must continue to grow in the revelation of who He is.  The faithful God of all creation is for you, with you, and in you by the New Birth.  You and I can live even more fearless than the disciples.  Their fearlessness was dependent upon their physical proximity to Jesus.  But now by the Holy Spirit of God, He is ever present with every Believer.  Furthermore, by the New Birth we share in His divine nature (2 Peter 1:4) and can use our faith to speak to the mountains (Mark 11:24) and storms of life that rock our boats and those of our loved ones causing fear.

Only when we see Jesus as He is can we begin to see ourselves as we are.  We grow in this revelation by time in His presence and through the Word of God.  It is a continual process, but it is one that will cause you to #LiveFearless because you’ll never again ask, “Who can this be?”

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312. FEAR it Believes & Receives

Posted by John Smith on December 9, 2016

Mark 4:40 NKJV  But He said to them, “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?”

FEAR is very similar to faith in at least one point and that is they both expect something.  Both faith and fear believe something and they both receive what they believe.

Jesus and the disciples were taking a boat across the Sea of Galilee when an incredibly violent storm arose.  The storm was so bad that even Peter, James, & John, who were all experienced sailors/fishermen believed that they were going to die (Mark 4:38).  They weren’t in faith at the moment; Jesus even told them that here in verse 40.  He said, “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?”

You see fear has an expectation.  It expects a negative or a bad outcome.  Bible faith on the other hand always expects a positive or a good outcome based on a promise from God.

Fear expects things based on circumstance, experience, and just for the sake of fear itself.  It expects something to be stolen.  Fear expects things to be taken away or to be prevented from having something or joined with someone.  Fear expects things to fall apart (relationships, finances, cars, etc.) and to be destroyed.  It expects sickness, disease, death and even more fear.  And the worst part is fear eventually receives exactly what it is expecting because, like faith, fear believes and receives.

God doesn’t want you to fear, because He knows the power of your expectation and the words that follow that belief which then shape and change our circumstances.  Instead of having fear based on circumstances, experiences, or imaginations we can have faith in God.  In fact, Jesus told us to, “Have faith in God” in Mark 11:22.

What is it that you are afraid of?  Why is it that your faith is deficient in light of your fears?  Don’t ever forget for a moment WHO is with you in the boat.  When we allow the reality of God’s present nature with us to slip fear will creep in.  And when we take for granted the awesome truth of His immense power and ability we also become subject to fear seeing our circumstance in larger light then Him.

Fear expects the worst.  Faith expects God to perform His Word.  Fear believes and receives just like faith.  If you still don’t believe me, just ask Job (Job 3:25).  So don’t let the reality of God’s presence with you diminish, remind yourself constantly.  I used to have a post-it-note on my steering column that said God is here to remind me.  And not only is He with you in the boat of life, but He has already released the power to save you, heal you, and deliver you from every circumstance toward you when He raised Christ from the Dead.  Fear believes and receives.  So stop fearing and only believe

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311. Joy is Greater than Fear

Posted by John Smith on December 2, 2016

Matthew 28:8 NKJV  So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word.

Mary Magdalene, Mary mother of James, & Salmone had just visited the tomb of Jesus where they encountered an angel who told them that Jesus was no longer in the tomb, but that He was alive and they’d see Him back in Galilee.  This verses says, “So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word.”  Doesn’t that sound funny?  It says they had both fear and joy.  How do you have fear and are happy about it?

It’s because their joy FAR outweighed any fear they were experiencing.  At that moment there were any number of anxiety inducing, fearful thoughts going through their heads.  Jesus is alive from the dead… what’s going to happen now?  What does this mean for us?  What do you suppose He looks like now?  Does He look the same?  How is this even possible?  What are the chief priests going to do next?  What about Pilate and Rome?  How will they respond?  Beyond that the shock of boulder moving angel had to still be in their minds.  Still, they knew that the words this angel had told them were true and the joy of knowing that JESUS is alive outweighed their fear.

What if every time fear began to attack your mind, you allowed the reality of Jesus’ resurrection to consume you with all the joy that revelation brings?  Jesus being alive means that we no longer need to fear death (Heb 2:15).  Jesus being alive means we no longer need to fear lack.  Jesus being alive means we no longer need to fear sickness, disease, depression, people, public speaking, or even being without the ability to use our cell phones (nomophobia).

The joy that comes with knowing JESUS and knowing He is alive allows you to have GREAT JOY in the midst of any trial or terror.  In John 15:11 Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.”  His desire is that we would stay ever filled to overflowing with His Joy.  And when we are… fear has no hold on us.  The joy you have in you is greater than any fear.  Joy is greater than fear.

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275. Embrace your God given vision and Fear Not!

Posted by John Smith on March 25, 2016

Daniel 8:16-19 AMP  And I heard a man’s voice between the banks of the [river] Ulai which called and said, Gabriel, make this man [Daniel] understand the vision. [Dan. 9:21; Luke 1:19, 26.]  (17)  So he came near where I stood, and when he came, I was frightened and fell on my face. But he said to me, Understand, O son of man, for the [fulfillment of the] vision belongs to [events that shall occur in] the time of the end.  (18)  Now as he [Gabriel] was speaking with me, I fell stunned and in deep unconsciousness with my face to the ground; but he touched me and set me upright [where I had stood].  (19)  And he said, Behold, I will make you know what will be in the latter time of the indignation [of God upon the ungodly], for it has to do with the time of the end.

Daniel had seen a vision that left him stupefied, confused, and afraid (Dan 8:15). Then he hears a voice telling the angel Gabriel to make him understand the vision and is doubly afraid. Partly because Gabriel is apparently an intimidating sight to behold (Zacharias also fell experienced fear when he saw him in Luke 1:12), but more so because he feared understanding the horror he saw in his vision and what this would mean for him and his people.

Daniel knew that God wouldn’t just show him this vision nor send Gabriel to interpret it for him without having a specific purpose. Besides just the fear of the vision and the situation, Daniel feared what it meant for him. He was now responsible to write and share this with others to inform them and educate them of things he wasn’t even sure he understood. I don’t personally know anyone that has had this graphic of visions from God in their calling or service (certainly the apostle Paul would be one (Acts 8)), but I know many who have been afraid of the visions for life and ministry that they have received. Geez, I’m one of them. It is a humbling and terrifying thing to be asked, invited, or told by God to do something. For me… I know how bad I can mess up breakfast, let alone projects, churches, and people that He’s asking me to minister to or accomplish. One might be overwhelmed by the task and certainly have a Holy Fear for it, but you don’t have to be afraid of the actual doing.

Don’t fear what God has called you to do or the vision that He’s given you. Embrace it! There is excitement that comes when you accept/embrace the vision God gives. That doesn’t mean it isn’t overwhelming. I regularly have to stop and take a deep breathe sometimes if I start thinking too far ahead of the present phase of what He’s given me to do, but the moment you decide to step into what God is showing you and calling you to do or proclaim is a liberating moment that you begin a new and exciting journey with Him. Embrace your God given vision and Fear Not!

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274. Awesome God

Posted by John Smith on March 18, 2016

11002003207Daniel 6:26-28 AMP  I make a decree that in all my royal dominion men must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel, for He is the living God, enduring and steadfast forever, and His kingdom shall not be destroyed and His dominion shall be even to the end [of the world].  (27)  He is a Savior and Deliverer, and He works signs and wonders in the heavens and on the earth–He Who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.  (28)  So this [man] Daniel prospered in the reign of Darius and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian.

Wow! Look at the respect that King Darius held for the God of Israel. More than just respect you can see the genuine awe and amazement that he had for God, who had just delivered Daniel without harm from the Lion’s den. I often think of how in an attempt to emphasize the approachability of God by focusing on Him as a dear friend and loving Father (which He certainly is), that we’ve lost some of the gravitas and AWESOME Wonder of exactly who our Loving Father and Friend is.

It is our in our losing fear (not terror of Him) of God and the reverential honor of the reality that HE is GOD that has allowed fear into the lives of so many Believers today. It is in that reality of who HE is, that our paradigm of how we see our problems, concerns and fears shifts. He is the God of creation. He is the God of incredible signs and wonders like turning water into wine, setting bushes on fire without burning them up, raising the dead, opening blind eyes & deaf ears, and rescuing you from a horrible eternal fate to name a few. How can we fear anyone or anything in this world if He is our God?

Darius had a small glimpse of the magnitude of God and knew, His (the Lord’s) kingdom would never be destroyed and His dominion would be everlasting. He understood a Holy Fear in dealing with God. He also recognized that it was this Holy Fear for God that empowered Daniel to fearlessly submit to being thrown into the lion’s den. Daniel’s AWE and confidence in the Lord provided an opportunity for the Lord to reach Darius. Our God is an awesome God. Is your AWE of God leading people to Him?

PS Daniel’s Holy Fear of God also led to his prosperity (Verse 28).

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273. Don’t Fear the Lion’s Den

Posted by John Smith on March 11, 2016

Daniel 6:9-28 NLT thHJCPY6WN

Daniel 6:14 NLT Hearing this, the king was deeply troubled, and he tried to think of a way to save Daniel. He spent the rest of the day looking for a way to get Daniel out of this predicament.

Daniel 6:18 NLT Then the king returned to his palace and spent the night fasting. He refused his usual entertainment and couldn’t sleep at all that night.

If you go and read Daniel chapter 6 you’ll see that because of Daniel’s excellence of attitude, service, and knowledge, he is quickly promoted under the new ruler Darius after the defeat of the Babylonians. This caused some interpersonal issues with those in the Persian government that wanted Daniel’s position, so they appealed to Darius’s pride who signs a ridiculous law that anyone caught worshiping any god or man other than Darius would be thrown in the Lion’s den.

This kind of law that prevents or prohibits somebody from worshiping God under penalty of certain death could be pretty intimidating to say the least, but Daniel doesn’t even flinch. He wouldn’t bow to any God other than the God of Israel and he certainly wouldn’t obey any law that told him not to. So Daniel went on a normal and had his regularly scheduled 3 times of prayer throughout the day. Of course this was a trap and he was hauled off in front of King Darius, who now was in extreme pressure to hold to his own “stupid” law at risk of defaming himself and losing all respect from his followers, has Daniel thrown in the lion’s den.

There are many notable points through this section of Scripture about submitting to a law and authority while not obeying them, but I want you to see that throughout this entire situation Daniel never once appears to be moved by fear or concern. The plotting governors and satraps were moved by fear and a thirst for more power. Darius was moved by fear and then was thrown into fear now fearing for Daniel’s life because of his decree. Darius was so afraid that he spent all day trying to figure a way out of the situation and then all night horrified in his bedroom. All the while, Daniel just stayed in peace knowing the power of His God and the righteousness of His actions. In Daniel 6:22, Daniel tells us that an angel came and shut the mouths of the lions, but more than that the angel really pacified the lions, because even if they didn’t eat Daniel they would still have had some pretty sharp claws to use him as a human scratching post.

Daniel wasn’t afraid. He didn’t have to be. He knew he was righteous in his heart and in his actions. It was this confidence that allowed him not to fear no matter what laws his local government passed or threats they handed down.

Under the New Covenant our righteousness far exceeds that of Daniels, because our righteousness has been established in the Righteous ONE Christ Jesus (Rom 5:17, 1 Cor 1:30). That’s some good news. God’s righteousness enables us to walk in peace in every situation and never fearing the outcome. We can walk in faith and experience the peace of God in every situation just like Daniel or we can be moved by fear and experience the torment of Darius. Trust God, know your righteousness through Christ, and walk confidently in God’s peace. You don’t have to fear the lion’s den.

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