April 18, 2015

Phantom Fear

Written by Wisdom Hunters

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – April 18, 2015

At dusk they got up and went to the camp of the Arameans. When they reached the edge of the camp, not a man was there. 2 Kings 7:5

It is easy to build a case in our minds regarding why we need to be afraid of a situation or a person. But God is bigger than our fears. He does not want us to be fear driven. This is not healthy for us or those around us. We can replace fear with faith and recognize that He is at work. Sometimes what we create in our minds are just caricatures of fear.

Is the object of your fear real? Perhaps what was a legitimate fear in the past is no longer something to be feared. Yes, it was very real before, but today it is gone. There is no need to fret or lose sleep over the matter. It is a dead issue. It may have related to finances. Fear gripped your heart as you worried about having enough. But God has provided in ways you never dreamed. You are more than taken care of by Him.

Do not let money dupe you into embracing the false fear of needing just a little bit more. You can rest in God and trust Him with your finances. Or your struggle may be related to a harmful relationship from the past. You fear reprisal toward you and your children. He has threatened you in the past, and you know his capabilities.

However, time has passed, and he has really changed. There is no need to fear. God has sincerely changed his heart. A bold move on your part would be to reach out to him. His health may be failing, and he is more teachable than you have ever seen him. Forgive him and show him the love of Christ. Turn your fear into forgiveness.

What you see are remnants of fear, but they are not real. Do not be deceived. The phantom fears that haunt you can be exposed. Shed the light of God’s Word and Christ’s confidence on them, and they quickly evaporate. Pull back the curtain of fear, and it is gone.

We tend to fill in the unknown with fear and negativity. But you can choose by faith to fill in the unknown with peace and trust in God. Most circumstances are out of your control, but nothing sneaks up on God. He has it under control. The storm may be raging around you; however, focus on the captain of the ship—Jesus—rather than the hostile waves slapping against the sides of the boat. Dismiss fear and embrace Christ’s comfort.

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me” (Psalm 23:4).

Prayer: How can I recognize and dismiss false fears? Whom do I need to forgive and not fear?

Related Readings: Exodus 20:20; Job 39:22; John 12:42; Romans 8:15

Additional Resource: 4 minute video- Chris Tomlin: Whom Shall I Fear

Taken from the April 18th reading in Seeking Daily the Heart of God v.2

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© 2015 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.
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Comments

  1. linda rice says:

    Thank you for the great devotionals each morning. I really appreciate them and you
    On the one this morning, on fear
    I was surprised you used the scripture in Job 39:22–which is about the Horse.
    A better one would have been Isaiah 41:10 -Fear thou not for I am with thee, be not dismayed, for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee, yea I will help thee; yea I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.

    1. Gwynne says:

      Dear Linda,
      Thank you so much for taking the time to reach out to us after you read “Phantom Fear”. Thank you, too, for the encouraging words about the devotionals. We are thankful that you are enjoying them.
      Isaiah 41:10 is absolutely one of my favorites as I am sure it is for many in our Wisdom Hunter’s family. I find some more comfort in this verse, especially in times of fear (anxiousness or confusion). The very fact that God is there to “uphold us with the right hand of His righteousness” is such a gift of strength and sweet encouragement. Thank you, God!
      We are always blessed to hear from one of our fellow wisdom hunters. Thank you, Linda. We look forward to hearing from you again in the future.
      Blessings to you and yours.
      Gwynne

  2. Annie says:

    I am asking God to put the right words in my message. I found this devotional so inspiring until I reached the phrase “and now time has passed and he has really changed”. As someone working with abused women in Central America, I feel that a woman should pray and stay away from the abuser. YOUR words are dangerous for women and children trying to protect themselves. Forgive, but do not be fooled. I have a hard time believing that you are a woman.

    1. Gwynne says:

      Dear Annie,
      Thank you so very much for your heartfelt and sincere words in response to “Phantom Fear”. We really appreciate you taking the time to let us know your thoughts.
      I read “Phantom Fear” a few times before I responded, as well as reading your comments and I can see where you may be coming from (especially given the line of work you do). Please know that the author, Boyd Bailey, in no way is suggesting that a woman or child enter into an unsafe situation with an abuser. You are right, he is not a woman, but a married man (with a wife he adores) and four daughters. So, you can understand with 5 women in his immediate family who he loves, protects and adores, he would in no way suggest that a woman or child enter or return to a dangerous relationship.
      The fears that I believe Boyd are speaking of are the phantom fears that are gripping our minds because they are fears we never surrendered to our Heavenly Father to take care of for us, in His Way, in His perfect timing.
      “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest in your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11: 28-30
      As Boyd reminds us in the devotional, “But God is bigger than our fears. He does not want us to be fear driven.” “We can replace fear with faith and recognize that He is at work.”
      Fears such as financial worries, health issues and emotional challenged relationships are fears that God wants us to give to Him (because He loves us that much!)
      Annie, if you would like to continue this discussion, please feel free to contact me: gwynne@wisdomhunters.com. I look forward to talking with you more.
      And Annie, before I close, please let me say that we thank God for the work you have done and are doing with the women of Central America. Your servant’s heart is a testimony of your love of the Lord. The light you shine in the lives of these women and children is such an example of Jesus. If you have time, could you email me at my Wisdom Hunter’s email address and tell me more about the work you are doing there. Thank you.
      Blessings to you and yours.
      Gwynne
      “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies- in order that in everything God may be glorified through Christ Jesus. To Him belong the glory and dominion forever and ever.” 1 Peter 4:10-11


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