I have lived with fear most of my life. Even as a young girl, I nursed fears and illogical outcomes on a daily basis.
Overcoming the spirit of fear always seemed like a good idea but living free from fear felt unattainable.
Fear was my constant companion.
-Going to sleep meant overcoming the spirit of fear
-Waking up meant overcoming the spirit of fear
-Daily activities (especially with my children) meant overcoming the spirit of fear
People that know me would not guess the stronghold fear had on me because my spirit of fear was internalized; swimming around in my head with nowhere to go.
I knew that as a believer in Jesus my spirit should not be dominated by fear, but I lived this way for a long time. Fear was fighting to distract and monopolize my thoughts and therefore my actions; overcoming the spirit of fear was a daily struggle.
But slowly God nudged me with His amazing love and helped me learn how to climb out of the pit of fear.
I have not conquered a spirit of fear but have learned ways to overcome fear with faith in God. A God who cares so much that His presence is always available to comfort and soothe us even when we wrestle with the most illogical of fears.
“Let him have all your worries and cares, for he is always thinking about you and watching everything that concerns you.”
1 Peter 5:7 TLB
What Does the Spirit of Fear Mean?
What does the spirit of fear mean? Our spirit is the part of us that connects with God. Fear is an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous and likely to cause pain or a threat. When our spirit is clogged or dominated by fear, our connection to God is affected.
Most of us at some point wrestle with overcoming a spirit of fear and replacing it with a spirit of faith. Although some fear is necessary, our spirit is what gives us life and should be full of hope and joy, not fear.
When we walk around with a spirit of fear we take space away from the victorious joy-filled life God intends for us.
A spirit of fear robs us of life; fear is a distraction and an all-consuming force. But with Christ, overcoming the spirit of fear is possible!
Notice the words unpleasant emotion in the definition of fear. Realizing fear is an emotion means we can do something about it. We can decide overcoming the spirit of fear is an option.
“We’re not born with a little voice named “Fear” in our brains that turns on and off in response to certain things or at certain times of the year. Emotions are much more complicated than that.
Our bodies are constantly responding to changes in the environment and then we have to think about and interpret that response based on what’s happening in the world around us, and what’s happened in our past.”
Vanessa LoBue Ph.D.
Research shows that all of us fear something and some people fear more than others. Fear can become a subconscious, unwanted friend. If overcoming the spirit of fear is our goal, we will have to reprogram our thoughts. Fear is so powerful it can dominate our thoughts and our focus.
Since science confirms fear is an emotion, it can help us embrace the fact that we have some control over fear—we can choose how we respond to things that cause fear.
Overcoming the Spirit of Fear
Learning to scuba dive in Mexico sounded like a fabulous idea. My Friends and I were trained and hopped on a boat headed out to our first diving adventure. Overcoming the spirit of fear was not on our radar.
But as we waited to jump into the Gulf of Mexico, staring at the enormous waves, my knees began to quiver. A sensation of fear began to creep up and overwhelm me to the point of feeling smothered and unable to breathe.
The scuba equipment felt like it weighed hundreds of pounds and was crushing my body. I suddenly knew that fear had won and scuba diving would have to wait for another day. (Well maybe not, because I have never attempted diving again!)
Have you been in this type of situation where the meaning of fear is demonstrated and affects all of your senses? Where overcoming the spirit of fear seems impossible? Fear is real and can overtake us if we don’t have the tools to help us overcome fear with faith.
Fear doesn’t always plague us as dramatically as scuba diving did, but it is an unwanted nemesis that alters our thoughts, behavior, and relationships.
“Fear kills expression of love, plugs lines of communication, imprisons victims of abuse, taunts with phobias, and erodes confidence and security.
Fear is not the private domain of the weak. It strikes at the best of us. Its most dangerous aspect is its ability to slap handcuffs and shackles on life, to keep the believer who wears them bound up in the prison of frustration and hopelessness.”
Carol Kent, Tame your Fears
Since fear can snatch any one of us, how is overcoming the spirit of fear possible? Through our growing faith and trust in God.
Can God Help Me With Overcoming a Spirit of Fear with Faith?
Have you wondered, can God help me overcome a spirit of fear with faith? I have wrestled with this question so many times it is quite embarrassing to admit.
One of the reasons I have repeatedly questioned can God help me overcome fear with faith is because I was not investing enough of myself into my faith to trust God.
In my own strength, I can not overcome fear with faith. In my life, fear was often winning.
At times we struggle spiritually and doubt who we are in Christ. We also question His promises. Regardless of what you are facing if you truly believe how much God loves you, you’ve discovered the first line of attack for overcoming the spirit of fear with faith.
“The key is to learn to trust God, no matter what our fears are. And we can trust Him because He loves us, and He is greater than anything we’ll ever face.”
God can help you learn to choose a posture of hope and optimism so that you can become better at overcoming the spirit of fear with faith.
Overcome Fear with Faith
As long as we choose a path of personal growth, we will face fearful situations. Life is full of negative situations that happen or might happen, but we don’t have to focus on possible outcomes.
God’s ultimate goal is intimacy with us and our total dependence on Him to sustain us. When we focus on Jesus we learn to do the best we can, grow from our mistakes, and release fixation on outcomes.
If we continue to operate by fear, it becomes our compass instead of Christ.
Although we shouldn’t be consumed by fear, It would be difficult to understand what it means to trust God if we never had a fearful emotion. Overcoming the spirit of fear with faith helps our spirit grow stronger and we become more confident and authentic.
“Fear is a friend because it is only when we are afraid that we plumb the depths of trust. We cannot know what trust mans unless we live through experience in which the Lord is all we have to hold on to.” Larry Richards.
A trustful reliance on God’s character and God’s word is vital to overcoming the spirit of fear with faith.
4 Keys for Overcoming the Spirit of Fear with Faith
For a long time, I struggled with the fear of flying. Every time an airplane took off, I felt fear. I started incorporating these four tools to help me with overcoming a spirit of fear when flying and in many other scenarios. I actually enjoy flying now after many years of tackling fear.
There are many helpful keys for overcoming the spirit of fear with faith. Here are four habits that have served me well when I face fearful situations.
- Acknowledge and try to understand your fear. Is it logical, is it possible, and/or is it probable? Life is full of negative things that might happen; don’t focus on them.
- Learn your fear triggers and be prepared to rein in emotions. It is also helpful to have techniques to calm down when fear hits.
- Study the Bible. Learning scripture has helped me renew my mind in preparation for battle. Bible study has also helped me live more in the moment.
- Develop a habit of prayer. When fear begins to creep in, ask God to surround you with peace and comfort.
God created us to live with spiritual abundance so we can enjoy a relationship with Jesus, share our gifts with others, and persevere in our God-given purpose. Fear doesn’t have to take these promises away from us. When you embrace the keys to overcoming the spirit of fear, fear no longer dominates your life!
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” Romans 12:2 NLT
Scriptures to Overcome Fear with Faith
Overcoming the spirit of fear with faith takes practice. It took me a long time to allow faith to overpower the strong pull of fear. Understanding and learning scripture is a helpful tool to overcome fear with faith and let God become our anchor instead of our fears.
When you feel the pull of fear overtaking your spirit, turn to the word of God for guidance, strength, and peace. Reading and even memorizing scriptures helps with overcoming the spirit of fear.
8 Scriptures for Overcoming the Spirit of Fear with Faith
Here are eight scriptures for overcoming the spirit of fear. These scriptures continue to help me cling to my faith and trust in God instead of my fear.
- “So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord, your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 NLT
- “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth, you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 NLT
- “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity or cowardice or fear, but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of sound judgment and personal discipline [abilities that result in a calm, well-balanced mind and self-control].” 2 Timothy 1:7 AMP
- “Though a mighty army surrounds me, my heart will not be afraid. Even if I am attacked, I will remain confident.” Psalm 27:3 NLT
- “For I cried to him and he answered me! He freed me from all my fears.” Psalm 34:4 TLB
- “When I get really afraid, I come to you in trust. I’m proud to praise God; fearless now, I trust in God.” Psalm 56:3 MSG
- “Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life”. Philippians 4:6-7 MSG
- “Don’t panic. I’m with you. There’s no need to fear for I’m your God. I’ll give you strength. I’ll help you. I’ll hold you steady, keep a firm grip on you.” Isaiah 41:10 MSG
Overcoming the spirit of fear will probably continue to be part of my story. Finding other verses to help in the battle will help me continue to grow and find more treasures in God’s word. What are your favorite scriptures for overcoming the spirit of fear?
Prayer Against Fear
When we take our focus off of God, fear can cloud our vision. We can lose sight of ourselves, our relationships, and our faith. Prayer against fear is the best way to stay connected to God and win the battle against fear.
I have learned to consistently pray against fear. There is no best prayer against fear because every fearful situation strikes differently.
Overcoming the spirit of fear is possible when we realize God is available to help us with whatever burden we are carrying. Prayer against fear is a personal conversation with God to help you overcome fear with faith.
Matching relaxation techniques with prayer has helped me with overcoming the spirit of fear. As you pray against fear, breathe slowly, meditate on scripture and play or sing a soothing worship song.
Prayer against fear also helps you live in the moment and realign your thoughts with those of God.
Fear will never disappear completely, but we can grow in our faith and in our trust in God providing a pathway for overcoming the spirit of fear with faith day by day.
Once we acknowledge on a deep level that we are unable in our own strength to solve all of our problems and overcome all of our fear, we can grow in our reliance on Christ. This is the best key to overcome a spirit of fear with faith.
Before you go…Have you struggled overcoming the spirit of fear as I have? How did you learn to overcome fear with faith? I would love to hear from you in the comments.