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March 5, 2006
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Tools For Everyday Life

“Overcoming Fear and Anxiety”

March 5, 2006.  Pastor Matt

 

 

INTRO

In America,

 

Fear,

20% of all fatal accidents happen when riding in a car. 

17% of all accidents occur at home. 

14% of all accidents happen when walking on streets or sidewalks.

16% of all accidents happen when traveling by air, rail, or water.

Only .001% of all deaths occur in worship services in church.

 

There are healthy fears

Such as…

…one that keeps your finger out of the electrical socket. 

…fear of a deadly snake

 

An unhealthy fear is the idea that the electricity is going to jump out of the wall and get you

 

Anxiety is a type of fear. 

 

In its simplest sense, anxiety is a fear of the unknown.  It is a fear of what might happen, especially when you are not in control of a situation.

 

Anxiety or worry is one of the most counterproductive things we can do

 

Anxiety has been described in the following ways:

 

It is like a rocking chair it will give you something to do, but it won't get you anywhere

It is like a fast getaway on a wooden horse

 

In 1 Timothy 1:7, When Paul was encouraging Timothy to put to use the gifts God had given him, he told him not to be fearful because…

 

God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.

 

Fear can keep you from doing the things God has planned for you to do.

 

We see from the parable of the sower, that worry/ anxiety will keep you from producing fruit in your Christian life

 

Mark 4:18-19.  Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word; but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful.

 

The more I studied and prepared for this sermon, the more I realized this is something I have not got figured out, not even close yet.

 

What do we do when fear begins to control us?

What do we do when we begin to see a pattern of worry in our life?

What do you do or not do because of fear or anxiety?

 

I can’t possibly give you a guaranteed solution for every situation that causes fear or anxiety, but I can give you some things that you can look within yourself and ask yourself if you are doing them or not.

 

There is no one size fits all.  There is one solution but several ways to accomplish/get to the solution

 

I can only give you today what God has put on my heart to help me with my struggles and hopefully it helps you too.

 

What can we do to overcome fear & anxiety?

 

Read Matthew 1:26-47.

 

She was afraid of being face to face with an angel and living to tell about it.

This was a natural, good kind of fear

 

Once she knew that the situation was from God, she was no longer afraid

A situation which at first caused fear and worry became a moment of trust

 

When we are faced with anxiety or fear, we need to take it as an opportunity to trust the Lord

 

Mary went from fear and worry to trust and obedience

 

Mary’s response:

Matthew 1:46-47.  And Mary said: "My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,

At first she was afraid of the angel, but once the Lord spoke, she rejoiced. 

 

She had all the reasons in the world to worry and be afraid and yet, she rejoiced!

 

What did Mary do to keep herself from being overcome with fear?

 

-         She recognized God at work

-         She put her trust in Him

 

1. We too need to trust God to be in control

 

He will do what is best for us,

He will guide our paths

He is the light that lights the way for our path. 

 

Often we try to regain control so things can calm down, but we really need to let go of the control.

We do this in many ways. 

We try to self medicate. 

We fill our bodies with pleasure to numb the inner turmoil. 

 

We: Sleep, drink, stay busy, ignore it, eat

 

Another example:

 

Luke 12:22-34 tells us not to worry because God will provide what we need

 

A great example:

 

Psalm 23

-         He tells us not to fear because God is with us

-         Green pastures and quiet waters are talking about what is going on inside us

 

Anxiety and fear are for nonbelievers. 

We need not worry when we have Jesus.

 

We need to let him be our shepherd,  When we do this, He is in control and He will do what is best for His sheep, His children.

 

 

Letting go of the control is unnatural, it is and old self way. 

 

However, if we trust the one we leave it to, it is easy.  Do we know the one in whom we are to trust?

 

Or

 

Do we feel like we are leaving our jewelry with someone we don’t trust or parking our car in a neighborhood we don’t feel safe in.

 

 

How do we trust Him?  How do we give him control?

 

The best way we can more easily give Him control is by get(ing) to know Him better.

 

When we get to know the one you are putting your trust in, you can more easily trust him and not worry.

 

Two ways to get to know Him better:

 

A. We must Build our life on the Rock

 

Luke 6:47-49. 

 

We have to build our life on the rock so that when the storms come, you can withstand the storm.  The storms will come, we will feel the effects of the storm but we will survive

 

We are building our life around one person…Jesus.  We are interconnected with Him, our life is found in Him.

 

We get to know Him by drenching every aspect of our life with Him

 

B. We can also stand on His promises.  He does not lie!

 

Read from the lists

 

The simplest and best way to do this is by reading some to you

 

What else can we do to overcome anxiety and fear?

 

2. Get rid of some stress in your life.

 

How can we remove stress in our life?

 

A. Learn to say no

 

We all have our limits to how much stress we can handle.  If you are in over your head, you will be anxious, depressed. 

 

When you have too much to handle, you will feel like you have too much to handle.

 

Do what God tells you to do and let Him handle the rest

 

B. Learn to rest

 

Exodus 31:15.  For six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day is a Sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD.

 

Another great way of dealing with stress is by resting.  Resting is recharging.  God knew what He was doing when He told us to take one entire day every week and rest!

 

There is a very real need for a day of rest.  Not a moment of rest, but an entire day.  Our bodies were meant to rest.  When we don’t rest, we will suffer negative consequences.

 

C. Learn to take care of your body

 

When we eat unhealthy and are out of shape we are more prone to the fear an anxiety.

 

Who we are cannot be separated from our physical bodies. 

 

The body is a physical thing that is affected by what we do to it.

 

Things such as caffeine, cigarettes, and alcohol can increase your tendency to be anxious

 

Eat healthy, Exercise regularly.

 

Get enough sleep

 

3. We can pray

 

This is the most important thing we can do

 

Philippians 4:6-7.  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 

4. We can stop doing the things that cause fear or anxiety.

 

Philippians 4:8-9.  Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

 

If you put garbage in, you will get garbage out. 

 

Feed your mind with things that will result in what you are looking for. 

 

Stay away from what makes you fearful or anxious.

 

Practice doing things that bring joy and peace.

 

Conclusion:

 

The cure for those who fear death is belief in Jesus:

 

Hebrews 2: 14-15.  Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil— and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.

 

The ultimate fear to overcome is fear of death

 

 

Fear is removed when we stand on His Word.  When we believe in what He has said in His Word, we do not have anything to fear.  God’s promises are true.  He does not lie.  What He says will come true.  Some of His promises are as follows:

 

(Matt. 11:28) “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”

 

(Ps. 55:22). “Cast your burden on the Lord,

And He shall sustain you;

He shall never permit

The righteous to be moved”

 

(Ps. 86:7)“In the day of my trouble I will call upon You, for You will answer me”

 

(Prov. 3:5, 6) “Trust in the Lord with all your heart,

And lean not on your own understanding;

In all your ways acknowledge Him,

And He shall direct your paths”

 

(2 Chronicles 30:9) ...the Lord your God is gracious and compassionate, and will not turn His face away from you if you return to Him.

(
Psalm 37:4) Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart.  

(
2 Thessalonians 3:3)
The Lord is faithful, and He will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.              

(Romans 8:28)  We know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.  


(
1 John 1:9)  If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

(Romans 10:9)  If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved.  

 

For all the negative things we think or hear, God has positive responses and promises.

 




 

"It's impossible"
All things are possible (Luke 18:27)

 "I'm too tired"
I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28-30)

 "Nobody really loves me"
I love you (John 3:16 & John 13:34)

 "I can't go on"
My grace is sufficient (II Corinthians 12:9 & Psalm 91:15)

 "I can't figure things out"
I will direct your steps (Proverbs 3:5-6)

 "I can't do it"
You can do all things (Philippians 4:13)

 "I'm not able"
I am able (II Corinthians 9:8)

 "It's not worth it"
It will be worth it (Romans 8:28)

 "I can't forgive myself"
I forgive you (I John 1:9 & Romans 8:1)

 

 

 

 

 

 


 "I can't manage"
I will supply all your needs (Philippians 4:19)

 "I'm afraid"
I have not given you a spirit of fear (II Timothy 1:7)

 "I'm always worried and frustrated"
Cast all your cares on Me (I Peter 5:7)

 "I don't have enough faith"
I've given everyone a measure of faith (Romans 12:3)

 "I'm not smart enough"
I give you wisdom (I Corinthians 1:30)

 "I feel all alone"
I will never leave you or forsake you (Hebrews 13:5)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Some promises we should all know and guide our lives by:

Christ accepts us : Revelation 3:20; John 6:37

God gives eternal life : John 5:24; John 10:28

God forgives us : 1 John 1:7-9; Isaiah 1:18

God is faithful to us : Joshua 1:9; Isaiah 41:10

God comforts us : Psalm 23

Christ is always with us : Matthew 28:20; Hebrews 13:5,6

God protects us from harm : Psalm 91; Psalm 121

God gives us courage : Hebrews 13:5,6; Ephesians 6:10-18

God gives us wisdom : James 1:5

God gives us the strength to refuse temptation : 1 Corinthians 10:6-13; James 1:12-16

God answers prayer : John 15:7

God gives peace of mind : Philippians 4:6,7

God guides us : Psalm 32:8,9

God relieves us from suffering : 2 Corinthians 12:8-10

God gives us rest : Matthew 11:28,29