Thursday, January 2, 2014

Untangling the Root Causes - Fear, Anger, Anxiety: Part 2

Jesus comforting us when we fear.
In part 1 we began our discussion. Fears are a legitimate issue, sometimes even escalating into phobias. Research suggests the top fears are:

  • Snakes
  • Spiders/Insects
  • Scary Spaces (such as elevators, bridges, etc)
  • Other People (Public speaking, eating, drinking in public, etc)
  • Heights
  • The Dark
  • Thunder and Lightning
  • Flying
  • Dogs
  • The Dentist
  • Being Alone (Dying alone as well)
  • Terminal Illness
  • Failure
  • Rejection
What do every one of those things on the list have in common?  They share root causes. Why is a person afraid of the dark? The root cause is a fear of torture, pain, and/or death. Perhaps it is even realizing that we cannot control the outcome of every situation, even though we desperately wish we could.

In the first part of this article, I mentioned my fear of snakes. I even had dreams of snakes attacking me. I'd wake up freaked out. Again, I chose to force myself to recall the dreams, then walk through them step by step and ask myself what I can do to kill the snake? Now when I have dreams of snakes, I kill them before it ends. I conquer my fear in my dream. That is huge. Do I still have the dreams? From time to time, but I always kill the snake(s).

Next is to deal with the deeper question. Why am I so afraid of snakes? Am I afraid the bite will hurt or is it a fear of death? So often our fears are actually rooted in fear of death. Whether death of our body, soul, spirit, rights, etc. Even anger is often a way a person expresses their fear of the death of their perceived rights, control over situations, etc. Maybe it is fear of what would happen to our children if we die, etc. Maybe we fear ridicule, being wrong, being unloved, etc.

See, we were created to choose life. Somehow, instead of choosing life, we spend more time trying to avoid the death of all the things that matter to us. We become like the servant who buried his talent in fear of something happening to it, instead of employing it with wisdom and increasing it. [1] If we were choosing life, we would have it more abundantly.

The thief lost power over our spiritual life the day we repented and believed in Christ Jesus as Lord. He cannot have that, but he still chooses to steal, kill and destroy us piece by piece in a battle for our minds. Sometimes the enemy is simply our own flesh. In any case, we have to recognize the roots of our fear, anxiety, and anger if we want to overcome it and choose life. Because once we know what we fear and why we fear it, we can learn how to choose life!

Reflect on this: "There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love." [2]  (Remember, only Christ is perfect, we have yet to attain perfection, so the only perfect love we know is Christ Jesus.)

We will discuss this verse more in depth in the articles to come. 

Until then, choose life! Giulianna xoxoxox

  1. Matthew 25:18
  2. 1 John 4:18

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