The Fear Fight
To be free from fear is a fight, but the peace that is available once there is room for the presence
of God is worth the fight. The key to winning the battle with fear is to fight it at the spiritual level. As human beings, the deepest part of us is our spiritual part. Even as male and female are designed to connect, so the spirit of a man is designed to connect with the Spirit of God. God has created our spirits to be a home for His presence. In John 2:19, Jesus refers to His own body as a temple, and Paul picks up on that same idea in his first letter to the church in Corinth (1 Corinthians 3:16-17 and 6:19). Temples, especially to those in the first century, were believed to house the very presence of God.
When we truly connect with God, we become that home for His presence. It overflows into our mind, will, emotions, and body, giving us the power to do what He has called us to do. Without connecting to God first, we fall short of His will for our lives and there is a continual sense of inadequacy. This inadequacy is the root of so many fears that end up overtaking so many.
We are most aware of fear as a feeling, but it is far more than just an emotion. Fear is a spiritual presence that overtakes the spirit of a man. It infects the thought life and multiplies stress on the physical body. When there is a sickness at the spirit level, it flows to every part of a person’s being the same way that an infection affects the whole body.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (2 Tim. 1:7). Notice the language. A spirit of fear. When fear is in control of our spirit, we can be assured that it did not come from connecting with God. The same design that gives us the ability to connect with the Spirit of God means that demonic beings have the ability to invade and then impact our spiritual space as well. When a demonic spirit that specializes in fear is able to get some kind of access to us, it brings a darkness to our spirit. Once we allow influence at the spirit level, it overflows to every part of us.
To overcome fear, we often try various things to bring a sense of calm to our emotions. We try to take deep breaths, or talk ourselves through what is happening. In doing so we are treating only the emotional effects of fear, without actually addressing the root of the problem, the spirit of fear. When there is fear at the spirit level, attempts to “calm down” will have, at best, a temporary effect.
Freedom from fear only comes when that demonic access is forcefully removed and replaced by a connection to God. In the last blog, I shared that a simple way to get started toward overcoming fear is to “do something.” Ultimately, all spiritual power is exercised at the physical level. Words and actions have the power to give the demonic a greater level of influence, or to weaken and eliminate their influence.
Recognizing a spirit of fear (not just the emotion of fear) is a good first step. Once fear is identified, the next step is repentance toward God for entertaining a spirit of fear. Remember, we are designed and called to be a temple for God. The spirit of fear crowds out any significant connectedness we can have with God.
When we allow fear to reside in our spirit, we are choosing demonic connection rather than a godly connection. Even as a husband and wife should keep themselves only for one another, so we are called to keep our spirit pure for the presence of God. We have to guard our thoughts, our emotions, and our actions to make room for God and to stay connected to Him. When a spirit of fear is present, we haven’t been diligent in guarding our spirit.
Genuine repentance makes room for God’s presence. After repenting, the person should trust that God’s presence is already there to help, but the work is not yet done. Fear only leaves by force which ultimately has to be acted out at the physical level. To maintain freedom from fear, the person will need to speak directly to the spirit of fear and command it to leave in the name of Jesus.
There are many other solutions that will help on a temporary basis, and I will cover some of those in the next blog. But, ultimately, fear only leaves and stays gone when it is absolutely defeated by words and actions that have been energized by the presence of the Spirit of God.
“Do something!” is a good start. But if you want to win the fight over fear, instead of temporarily weakening it, there has to be a show down. You have to know that in Christ you have the power to win. And then you have to choose to win by guarding your spirit, being a home for the very presence of God and only the presence of God.