Fear is a reality in all of our lives. If you say you don’t have any fear at all, either you’re a liar or a psychopath—neither of these is a good option! Some of us can’t admit our fears because they’re so terrifying we can’t face them. Denial, though, never leads to growth, peace, joy, love, and strength.
Fear is a barrier between us and the things God is calling us to do. It keeps us still when God wants us to move, keeps us quiet when God wants us to speak, and causes us to shrink back when God wants us to reach out. Strong, creative spiritual leadership isn’t satisfied with the status quo. Leaders don’t focus on excuses for inaction; they look at possibilities for God to do amazing things. But leaders often have to overcome their fears.
Abraham left everything he had known to follow God into a distant land. Moses had been tending sheep so long that he lost confidence in his leadership abilities, but God still had a mission for him. After his initial hesitations, he marched boldly into Pharaoh’s presence and demanded, “Let my people go!” Joshua and Caleb believed God to lead the people into the Promised Land and conquer giants even when others cowered in terror. David put down Saul’s armor and faced the colossal giant Goliath with a sling and five stones.
Courage isn’t the absence of fear, but the willingness to take action in the face of fear. Every leader has to face very real fears. The key is facing your fears with the RIGHT ammunition and in the right SPIRIT! Never forget:
“God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” – 2 Timothy 1:7
What is Paul saying? Crippling fear doesn’t come from God. Instead, God pours out the solution to fear: power, love, and a sound mind. So, face your fears in prayer – and let God give you the power, love, and sound mind that He has promised!
(for more on this subject, check out my book, “I Blew It!” chapter 10)