Facing my fears

Fear was a very powerful part of my reality when my husband was being unfaithful and even in the months afterward as we worked to restore our marriage. I worried about how I would take care of myself and my daughter. Where would we live? How long would I have to look for a job? How could we make it? I had great difficulty sleeping at night. I worried about what people thought of me. I wondered if I could survive the affair and its aftermath. I feared that I would never be able to trust my husband again. I feared that I would always hurt and be in pain. All of these fears were normal, but they were often paralyzing. The scripture passage in Isaiah 43:1-2 became such a comfort to me: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” Isaiah 43:1b-2 (NIV). It offered me hope. It reminded me that God would be with me despite all the fear and uncertainty I faced. I began to seek out more verses in the Bible that really spoke to me, and I clung to them for dear life. When fear reared its ugly head, I battled against it by meditating on the verses God gave me. I conquered it by speaking God’s word over my mind and emotions. The battle was one I faced daily. I do not think there was one day that passed without me experiencing some type of fear. What became crucial, though, was that I began to walk in faith and not in fear. I began to act out of faith and not out of fear. I gave my fears to God, brought my thoughts captive to His truth and word (2 Corinthians 10:2-6), and the fears began to lose their power.

Satan loves for us to be in fear because he knows that fear keeps us from walking in faith, which is how God calls us to walk (Romans 1:17; Galatians 3:11; Hebrews 10:38). Hebrews 11 recounts the names of numerous people in the Bible who all lived BY FAITH. These men and women were human, just as we are, and many of them faced extreme conditions and severe trials. Because they were human, we know that they wrestled with their flesh just as we do. They had fears; they did not understand; they questioned. But the key common characteristic of all of them was that they chose to act in opposition to the thoughts, feelings and understanding of their natural man and stepped out on faith. When we read chapter 11 of Hebrews, we realize that faith  makes the impossible possible. It is faith that makes miracles possible.

We cannot see, feel, or hear God with our physical eyes, ears and hands, but we can see God through the eyes of faith. It is in the realm of faith that we experience God. So, I want to encourage you. No matter where you are in the battle you are facing, make the decision today, right where you are, to live by faith. God is not asking  you to jump off a cliff, figuratively speaking. He simply is asking you to take one small step of faith. Take that one small step of faith that God is asking of you, and then keep taking small steps of faith. God will honor your faith. By faith, you can experience the power of God. You can see what you think is impossible become possible. You can experience healing and restoration for yourself and your marriage. Do not let your fear hold you back from experiencing what God can do. Start where you are. Have an honest talk with God. Share your fears and questions with Him. There is nothing wrong with being honest with God. He desires our honesty. Once you share your heart with God, make this statement of affirmation: “But I choose to walk by faith; I choose to trust you.”  Then, daily commit yourself to live according to your statement of affirmation.

I never would have thought I had it in me to trust God so desperately, to walk by faith in the darkest of circumstances. All it takes, though, is a small amount of faith to move the mountains in front of you (Matthew 17:20; Luke 17:6). Speak to those mountains through faith. Where you lack faith, ask God to help you believe (Mark 9:24). God wants to help you; he wants to do something awesome in you and through you, but you must walk BY FAITH.

I am a living testimony that God can do the impossible. He can and does heal and restore people and marriages. He can and does use our trials for our good and for His glory. He can do anything! Nothing is too hard or impossible for God, but we must live by faith.

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