Learning from those Who Have Learned to Face Fear

When I’m facing circumstances that challenge my faith and seek to pull me into doubt, fear and discouragement, I need some real examples to remind that other people have gone through similar or worse situations. Sadly, looking on social media offers more fabricated phoney stories of success that are social versions of fake news.

I don’t have time for that. I need some real stories of people who have gone through or are going through some real challenges. The people I can relate to are those who faced their fears, took steps to overcome, but things didn’t just fall into place right away. They had a journey and a process.

The “Fairy Tale” Christian Stories

I cannot relate to believers who talk about their lives in a fairy tale manner, as though everything just works out beautifully, each step of the way. They talk about their life as though they take one step away from one thing and the next thing opens up beautifully in front of them.  

“I left this job and suddenly, a new job opened up.”

“I sold my house and I found the next one immediately.”

“I prayed a prayer and the door opened.”

It basically goes like this, “I followed God’s leading and it all worked out beautifully.”

I don’t relate to that. I have followed God in many situations where it actually got harder. Choosing to face your fears and walk the road of the overcomer gets tough. I’ve had to walk through wilderness experiences that didn’t show the rainbow or light at the end of the tunnel right away.

Walking with God and Facing Fearful Challenges

It’s an error to think that if you are walking with God, everything is just going to work out perfectly right in front of you, right away. Most of the time, it’s way messier than that. You wait much longer than you are every used to and you face painful areas you thought you would never have to deal with.

I know many of you feel the same way.

This is one the great reasons I get a lot of encouragement from the Scriptures. Those men and women faced tremendous hardship and often waited for eons to see the breakthrough take place.

Many of them faced tremendous odds beyond the struggles I face, yet they continued to press forward. This increases my faith and empowers my own journey.

The Fear of Not Knowing

Those I read about didn’t know how it was going to end. I, as a reader, have the luxury of knowing how someone like Abraham’s story ended, but when I look at my own life, the future has so much mystery to it. Fear seeks to creep in at any place of uncertainty, to build an assault of doubt against my journey.

So to build up my faith, I need constant reminders of those who have gone before me and paved the path to overcome.

You need this too. You need to be reminded that you are not crazy, you are not alone and you are not the only one going through tremendous battles.

In fact, the book of Hebrews speaks about a cloud of witnesses, those who have gone before us and paved the way with miraculous faith. These people do not sit in the hall of faith because they were perfect people. In fact, most of them had more flaws than you do. God moved in spite of their weaknesses and flaws.

Just Don’t Quit

But the biggest factor was that they didn’t quit. Their lives are reminders that all we need to do is stay in the game.

No matter what fears you are facing that don’t seem to relent. . .

Keep growing.

Stay in learning.

And don’t ever quit.

Sometimes it is just that simple. Not quitting positions you for the learning and growing that is available. It sets your attention on what God can do and it grants another blow to fear’s strategies.

Sometimes you need to be reminded to just not give up. Those who have gone before us remind us of that.