• ak

The Reality About Fear

“Think of talking to your fear like a scared kid,” the speaker said. “Say, ‘hey, I know you’re not going anywhere, but why don’t you just sit here and be quiet, because I have work to do.”



AS. IF. THAT. REALLY. WORKS.


I burst out laughing.


I couldn’t help it.


I felt bad for laughing at the speaker, but seriously?! How did he get all these accreditations and awards with THAT advice?!? My psychiatrist deserves the Nobel prize if this guy's advice is the standard for excellence.


Fear.

I haven't thought about this word in awhile. Maybe you haven't either, or maybe it's attached to you like your own personal shadow. Whatever the case is, I've come to realize a bitter truth about it: fear and anxiety must co-exist.


This was a huge pill for me to swallow. I praise myself for my solitude, confidence, lack of #FOMO, and courageous spirit. My entire life has required that I be courageous, steadfast, determined, and strong. So when I've heard the word "fear" in conversation with my peers, I've always said under my breath, "Thank goodness I don't deal with fear. Anxiety is enough for me. I'm so glad I'm not afraid."


As much as I disliked the speaker, he did make me realize that anxiety and fear are synonymous. And if I'm being honest, I wasn't too thrilled about that realization. It definitely contributed to my dislike just as much as his ridiculous metaphors did.


There is one verse in the Bible that sticks out to me when I think of anxiety and fear as one.


"all who hate me whisper about me, imagining the worst." - Psalm 41:7


Anxiety has always thrived where I feel most surrounded and most alone: the first day of classes. There is nothing that triggers my anxiety more than walking into lecture hall full of students. I'm somehow convinced that they are judging me, and I hate it. I look at the floor, keep to myself, and ride out the class. My most important rule is that I do not speak unless spoken to. It's a dangerous game... I really hope David feels some relief in knowing he wasn't the only person who thought everyone hated him, whispered about him, and imagined the worst for him. There's a young girl who thinks that everyday. Her script name is AK.


Getting real

The hypothesis that anxiety and fear are synonymous made my heart rate escalate to racehorse speed. Yet after reading Psalm 41:7, I realized that this was not uncharted territory. Despite what I've been telling myself for years, Fear is a close adversary of mine. This rattled me at first, but if there's anything I've learned in my journey towards mental health, it's that God conquers all of my anxiety. Whenever I feel anxious, I cast my anxieties onto Him (1 Peter 5:7). There is a method to how I erase anxiety with my faith, and I daresay this will work with fear too.


I pray, I affirm, and I affirm again.


It sounds too simple to be true, I know. Yet it's the ONLY thing aside from anti-depressants and SSRIs that reduce my heart rate and clear my mental fog. I pray and proclaim 1 Peter 5:7. I tell God I'm giving my anxiety to Him, because I can't handle it alone. Then I affirm. If it is His will, I want it. If it is His plan, I want it. If this is all somehow a part of His big plan for me, I'll endure it- with His help. God and anxiety cannot coexist. So God cannot exist in the presence of fear either.


It really comes down to this: Would you rather pray to the One who can eradicate fear to silence it once and for all, or keep on associating, bargaining, personifying, and telling fear to fall back?

This is where that speaker's advice becomes false testimony (1 John 4:5-6). Telling fear to simply be quiet will never, ever work. If it has for you, I'm unashamedly jealous. In order to conquer internal problems, we need an internal, all-powerful, all-loving, and all-knowing force.


This force is the Holy Spirit, which we can call upon through prayer.


The reality of fear is that it cannot be overcome through the advice of speakers. It can only be overcome through the tedious, internal, spiritual process of self-improvement. God is more than willing to help. I can attest to that, because I've seen Him ease my anxiety and fear ever-so-gently and gradually after my utterance of a humble prayer.


I hope this helps you, and eases your mind. It certainly eased mine.


All the peace,



AK.





"You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them {the bearers of false testimony}, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood." 1 John 4:5-6












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