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Dealing With Fear

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Dealing with Fear

I. Definitions
1. Fear n. - 1. In OE.: A sudden and terrible event; peril. 2. a. The emotion of pain or uneasiness caused by the sense of impending danger, or by the prospect of some possible evil.
2. Fear v. - II. To feel fear; to regard with fear. 3. refl. (cf. 1b) To be afraid. 5. trans. To regard with fear, be afraid of (a person or thing as a source of danger, an anticipated event or state of things as painful or evil).
3. Afraid adj. - 1. As pple. Alarmed, frightened; hence as adj., In a state of fear or apprehension, moved or actuated by fear.

II. Fear is caused by a lack of faith.
1. Jesus attributed the disciples' fear to a deficiency of faith (Mar 4:40).
2. Faith is the antidote to fear (Psa 56:3).
3. If we put our trust in the LORD, we will be safe (Pro 29:25).
4. If we love God we will believe that He will protect us, and that love of God exercised through faith will cast out fear (1Jo 4:18).
5. If we believe that God will protect us, we will not be afraid (Mar 5:36).
6. We must not be afraid of sudden fear, for the LORD shall be our confidence (Pro 3:25-26).

III. The devil is behind our fears (Heb 2:14-15).
1. When the devil tempts you to fear, answer him with the word of God (Mat 4:1-11).
2. Resist him steadfast in the faith (1Pe 5:8-9).
3. When you do that, he will flee from you (Jam 4:7).

IV. When dealing with fearful thoughts, talk to yourself, don't listen to yourself.
1. The thing that distinguishes human beings from all other creatures is our rational mind which is capable of self-reflection.
2. The spirit within man enables him to know himself and converse with himself (1Co 2:11).
A. We can think with ourselves (Act 26:9).
B. We can force ourselves to do something (1Sa 13:12).
C. We can keep ourselves from sinning (2Sa 22:24).
D. We can commune with ourselves (Psa 4:4; Psa 77:6; Ecc 1:16).
E. We can comfort ourselves (Psa 119:52).
F. We can consult with ourselves (Neh 5:7).
G. We can determine with ourselves (2Co 2:1).
H. We can judge ourselves (1Co 11:31).
I. We can hate ourselves (Job 42:6).
3. The psalmist repeatedly talked to himself and encouraged himself instead of listening to himself when he was depressed (Psa 42:5,11; Psa 43:5).
4. Commune with your own heart on your bed (Psa 4:4).
5. When you start having unrealistic fears, remind yourself of the works of the Lord and how that He is in control (Psa 77:1-20).
6. Remind yourself that most of the things that we worry about never come to pass.
7. Ask yourself:
A. What is the likelihood that what I fear will come to pass?
B. What is the worst thing that could happen if what I fear materializes?
C. If it happens, will I be able to go on?
D. Have other people lived through it?
E. If it kills me, won't I be better off in heaven?
F. Is what I am worried about now doing to matter in five years?
8. Tell yourself to believe the following things to alleviate your fears.
A. God is in control, and nothing happens without His permission (Isa 46:10).
B. God has not given me the spirit of fear, but of power and love and a sound mind (2Ti 1:7).
C. At what time I am afraid, I will trust in God (Psa 56:3).
D. In God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me (Psa 56:4).
E. Fear not; God is with me (Isa 41:10).
F. Fear not men (Mat 10:28).
G. Be not afraid (Jos 1:9; Isa 40:9; Jer 42:11; Mat 14:27; Mat 17:7; Act 18:9).
H. Be still and know that the LORD is God (Psa 46:10).
I. God has saved me from many things in the past and He will continue to do so (2Co 1:8-10).
J. God will deliver me from my fears (Psa 34:4).
K. Let not my heart be troubled (Joh 14:27; Mat 24:6).
L. Though a host should encamp against me, I will not fear (Psa 27:3).
M. God hears my prayers and will protect me; and even if He does allow me to suffer, I will not be afraid (1Pe 3:12-14).

V. Deal with your fears head-on.
1. If you have an unrealistic fear of something, do it rather than avoiding it. For instance:
2. If you have a fear of germs...
A. don't wash your hands after you use the bathroom.
B. don't wash your hands after you shake someone's hand.
C. pick up food off of the floor as soon as you drop it and eat it.
D. eat food a few days past the expiration date if it looks and smells okay.
3. If you have a fear of leaving your door unlocked....
A. don't check the lock when you are pretty sure you locked it.
B. leave the door unlocked for a night.
4. If you have a fear of talking with people, force yourself to introduce yourself to someone.
5. If you have a fear of driving on snowy roads, do it.
6. If you fear being rejected by women, ask one out on a date. If she turns you down, ask another one.

VI. Fearful thoughts often come in the night and prevent sleep (Dan 2:1; Dan 4:4-5).
1. This often happens because fears have not been dealt with during the day by keeping the mind busy (Luk 10:41).
A. When night comes and the mind has a chance to slow down and think, the fears reemerge.
B. Paul dealt with restlessness because of his fears within (2Co 7:5).
C. Nevertheless God comforted him (2Co 7:6).
2. Ways to combat fears in the night.
A. Get to bed early.
i. Sleep does a body good (Joh 11:12).
ii. God gives his beloved children sleep (Psa 127:1-2).
iii. To get to bed early, make yourself a schedule for bed time and get into a routine.
iv. Get the kids to bed a couple of hours before you go to bed.
v. Spend an hour before bed relaxing.
vi. Have a lamp and book on your nightstand and read as you lie in bed which will take your mind off of your fears and cause you to fall asleep (Est 6:1).
vii. When you start to doze off, set the book on the nightstand, turn off the lamp, and roll over and fall asleep.
B. Make time during the day to go to the word of God for wisdom which helps us not be afraid when we lie down and will yield us sweet sleep (Pro 3:21-24).
C. If you have fears when trying to fall asleep, recite some of the verses in this outline about fear and believe them.

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