I will not be afraid because the Lord is with me.Psalm 118:6 (EXB)
I don’t know when the love you were born with was replaced by fear. Maybe your innocence was taken at a very young age. Or you learned the harsh reality of life and death before you were old enough to understand what you were going through. Or, maybe you grew up in a violent home and experienced trauma as a child. It’s possible the circumstances of your life taught you to feed your fear instead of defeat it. But, it’s time to choose courage over your fear.
“Love is what you were born with, fear is what you learned.” ~Unknown
For much of my life I wore the label fear like it was my identity.
I made the choice to grow bitter and fearful because of the storms I had walked through. The broken pieces of my life made me full of fear. I was terrified of the unknown and eventually this led to: mediocrity, unfulfilled dreams, toxic relationships, missed opportunities, anxiety, panic attacks, shallow faith, depression, paralyzing doubt, feeling stuck, being unable to make decisions, and excuses. Oh the excuses.
Over the last few years I have found that the best way to defeat fear is with courage and action.
You can take action in the midst of being afraid. Because, the truth is, fear is not the same thing as being afraid. Fear will make you self-sabotage relationships when vulnerability is required for growth. Fear makes you say (or think!) things like, “I can’t,” “I don’t know how,” or “It’s never going to work out.” It keeps you stuck in excuses for years. Which will make you spin your wheels and miss out on once-in-a-life-time opportunities.
Walking forward even though we are afraid is courageous and motivating. Doing something afraid can propel you into new seasons and healing you never imagined possible.
Courage: Noun. Mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty.Merriam-Webster.com, 2011
It takes great courage to take a step of faith when you have no idea where your foot may land.
A person who embraces the cracks in her life defeats fear and walks forward…even when they are afraid. As you continue with today’s study you will learn the difference between the words “fear” and “afraid.” You will examine the different ways these words are used in the Bible and how understanding the meanings can help you better overcome the storms in your life. By the end of this study, you will be ready to muster up your courage and walk forward – even when you are afraid.
Fear: Noun. A distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid. Synonyms: foreboding, apprehension, consternation, dismay, dread, terror, fright, panic, horror, trepidation.
Afraid: Adjective. Feeling fear; filled with apprehension: afraid to go. Feeling regret, unhappiness, or the like. Feeling reluctance, unwillingness, distaste. Synonyms: scared, fearful, disquieted, apprehensive, timid, timorous.
In many English versions of the Bible, the words fear and afraid are often used interchangeably.
But in the original languages they often have different meanings and should not be interchangeable. For example, a commonly used Hebrew word for fear in the Old Testament is yārā which has a few different meanings. Sometimes it means the kind of fear that is akin to honor, respect, and awe (ie: “the fear of the Lord.”) Other times it means to frighten, terrify or intimidate. Those are two very different meanings of the word fear that should create two very different responses in the believer’s life.
Look up these following verses. Record the differences you notice in how the word fear is used. What do you discover about fear as it relates to the storms, and the broken pieces in your life?
- Joshua 24:14
- Psalm 56:3
- Psalm 112:7
- John 14:27
- Romans 8:15
UNBROKEN Journal Questions:
- In your own words, what is the difference between the words fear and afraid?
- How can this difference help you better handle the broken pieces of your life and get a better perspective of your future?
- What worries you about releasing fear and embracing trust, patience, or forgiveness?
My God is faithful and trustworthy. I have no reason to doubt or fear.Truth Statement®
The truth is fear never really leaves. We have to learn to step forward into the unknown, full of courage, even if we are afraid. Believing there will be hope and healing on the other side.
With Grace & Grit,
P.S Don’t forget to leave a comment and tell me what you think before you leave, thanks!
Raychel Perman is a Certified Life & Business Coach, Speaker, Author, and Co-Founder of RAYMA Team, LLC. She is the Co-host of the She Who Overcomes™ Podcast and is funny, wise, and tells it like it is. Raychel shares her story of overcoming trauma and living with mental health challenges to inspire others to believe that the broken pieces of their past can lead to beauty, strength, and new beginnings.
Editors Note: At the writing of this blog post we are in the processing of formatting and editing the 2nd edition of my 30 day Bible study for women, Unbroken. In honor of the occasion I will be releasing blog posts for Summer Series that come directly from the book. If you want to be the first to know when the release happens- join our VIP email list by CLICKING HERE (and get 7 free audios to help you create a stronger mindset as our gift!)