Everyone faces some level of fear and anxiety in life. Some fear is natural and keeps us safe. This can be understood by thinking of the biological response that we receive from standing on a ledge or balcony, hearing a sudden loud noise, or seeing someone else in danger. When we are in situations that appear dangerous, even when they are not, our body responds naturally to try and keep us safe. This same thing could be said for anxiety. It is normal to be concerned about what you are going to do in a difficult financial situation, or when someone you love is facing a devastating illness. These are natural responses that even healthy people experience when they are exposed to incidents that are not common every day. Some fear or some anxiety in life is normal. What is not normal is when fear and anxiety wreck someone’s daily life and common experiences. When fear and anxiety are controlling normal social interactions and our daily responsibilities and cause us to feel disturbed, distracted, and discouraged, then our level of anxiety and fear is too much.
Luke 4:18 states that Jesus Christ was sent into this world so that we would experience release. In most translations, this Scripture speaks of being set at liberty. Jesus is quoting the prophet Isaiah to say that the person that Jesus releases is the one who is oppressed. (See article on “Understanding and Healing from Trauma, Part 2” for more information on this idea of oppression.) This liberty from Jesus is a release from something that binds. If a person was in a prison cell or handcuffed and they were set free, they would no longer be bound and locked into that captivity. The free person no longer has limitations on their movement and mobility.
This liberating includes not just fear and anxiety, but the deeper issue of sin. In the gospel, Jesus Christ is our liberator from sin itself. Sin is the power that is within each human that drives them into rebellion against God. We all have it, and the Son of God, Jesus Christ, is the only solution. The New Testament speaks of Jesus as our liberator from sin in: Matthew 26:28, Luke 1:77 and 24:47, Acts 2:38 and 5:31. These Scriptures use the same word for liberty and release as in Luke 4:18 though it is translated into the English word “forgiveness” in these mentioned verses. This is what forgiveness is, it is a release. This is another reason why the act of forgiveness is so powerful in our own healing. Forgiveness releases off from us the effects of how others have sinned against us.
Fear goes too far when it binds us in our daily living. Reoccurring and nagging anxiety is often an underlying fear that has become a belief. What starts as fear has developed into an actual belief system that shapes our reality and how we interact with the world around us. This belief rises up in a person when that fear is being experienced in real-time. That anxiety can come to the surface even by just expecting to be in a situation that irritates that belief system. Many times these anxieties float up within us with associated bodily sensations like pressure on our chests or shortness of breath.
Fear is related to anxiety, but it is also commonly associated with anger. I have heard it described this way, that “anger is what hides fear.” The anger, when it is actually based in a specific fear or a set of fear beliefs, prevents others from actually knowing what is going on within the individual. All they see is the anger, and this strong emotion with powerful outward displays signals to the others present that they need to back away and give the person space. These many times unconscious actions are how a person with dominating fear in their life prevents the real issue from being known. This can be how a person behaves to prevent them from having to acknowledge that they are hurt as a sign of weakness. The act of anger also keeps others at a safe distance because the angry person has most likely been hurt before and is dealing with an additional fear of vulnerability. They do not want to repeat and experience being let down or hurt again because the original pain has not been healed.
If you need help with fears, and anxiety gets in touch with our counselor today to receive more information about our Christian counseling services in Clermont, FL.