“Moving Fearlessly Forward”
Leaflet: “Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.”
Good evening & welcome to the very last sermon for 2019. I can’t think of any other way to end my year, amen?.
Psalm 27:1 (NIV) – The Lord is my light and my salvation- whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life- of whom shall I be afraid?
Tonight, I would like to share with you , from the Word of God, as we are about to say goodbye to the old year (2019) & welcome in a new year, a new year with new challenges, new goals, new commitments etc. etc.
But many here tonight & elsewhere, face the new year with many new uncertainties, a new grade at school, a career move to name a few!
And with this uncertainty of the new year, comes an uneasiness, a restlessness, and although it’s a feeling or emotion we’re all familiar with, we allow the “fear factor” to not only paralyse us, but also to control us!
God in all His wisdom knew that we will battle with this issue & I believe that’s why the word “fear” is mentioned over 500 times in the Bible!
You see church, fear has a way of rushing into our lives limiting us, holding us back, preventing us from so many promises that is available to us, even preventing us from growing & maturing spiritually!
Yes, even from reaching our full potential in Christ Jesus!
So tonight, I would like to discuss 2 types of “fear” with you,
Negative, depressing, destructive fear
Healthy, edifying fear
First negative fear: Fear of the unknown or future.
This is a very common unhealthy emotion or feeling present in the lives of many, yes even born-again Christians.
But I’m reminded of that chorus that says: Because He lives, I can face tomorrow, because He lives, all fears are gone!
Because of the uncertainty of the future, one tends to worry & fear the future, and in the process miss out on what we already have, the present with all God’s blessings & favour, amen?
Many Christians even have this fear of sickness & dying, that they don’t even enjoy living! (Don’t fear death, fear not living).
May I remind you of Psalm 46:1, “God is my refuge & strength, a tested help in times of trouble!
We cannot however be ignorant to the fact that tough times & trouble will come our way, and we don’t know what the future holds, but praise God that we know the One’s who’s been in the future, my tested help in times of need.
The 2ndnegative “fear’: Fear of man (people), this kind of fear will cause people to draw back, and not out & forward. It will also cause many to move deeper into the comfort zones preventing them from overcoming & beingconquerors.
We would rather believe the lies of the enemy or the words that people has spoken over us, that we cannot do this or that, or we’ll never achieve & accomplish, and we tend to believe them, instead of the Word of God for our lives!
We are being intimidated by what people may say & think of us, but I would rather be obedient to the calling on my life (Matt. 25:19) that being offended by what people may say about me.
Matthew 25:19 (NIV) – “After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them.”
(Song: “I don’t care what people may say about me, it’s alright, they’ll get it one day”)
Proverbs 26:25 (NIV) – Though their speech is charming, do not believe them, for seven abominations fill their hearts.
You see church, a trap or snare is not only something that will hold you back, but will kill you eventually, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe, amen!
Another negative fear in the lives of many, is the fear of what others can doto you!
Psalm 118:6 (NIV) – The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?
Psalm 56:4 (NIV) – In God, whose word I praise- in God I trust and am not afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?
Maybe you have legitimate reasons why you afraid of reaching out to others, maybe people treated you bad or even hurt you, but God’s word in Rom. 8:31 says clearly that “if God is for me……” What can mortal man do to me?
Luke 12:4, Why should I fear what man can do to me?
Luke 12:4 (NIV) – “I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more.”
The fourth, and most destructive, devastating fear that people can have is the fear of the past, with all its faults & mistakes.
We refuse to step out or be effective & victorious in life & God’s kingdom because we allow the fear of past mistakes & failures, not only to control us, but rule over us! We have this fear that whatever happened in the past, might come back to haunt us!
We live with the “what if” mentality, what if I make the same mistake again, what if I fail again, what if people hurt me again, that failed marriage, business deal, relationship ….. What if.
Can I encourage you tonight church, not to allow you’re past to dictate or dominate your life, cut your ties with whatever happened in the past, in 2019 and move on, fearlessly forward ……. Amen?
Isaiah 43:18-19(NIV) – 18”Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. 19See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”
I would now like to share with you, on the only “healthy” fear we should have.
Prov. 10:27 (NIV) – The fear of the Lord adds length to life, but the years of the wicked are cut short.
Prov. 1:29 (NIV) – Since they hated knowledge and did not choose to fear the Lord.
The fear of God is the beginning of all wisdom – not fear as in “bang” but to revere God (God vresend).
How sad is it in our modern day & age, that we see a complete lack of the fear of God. We see evidence of this daily on TV, newspapers etc.! People have no or little respect or fear of God, and even his name is used to express bitterness & anger.
May I remind you church, that the “fear” of God should be an important part of your life! Reverence for God should be part of your DNA.
But this can only happen when you put your complete hope, trust & faith in God, amen.
You see church, fear is “false evidence appearing real”, its perverted faith, so instead of having the “fear factor” we should be confident that God is able to:
Eph. 3:20 (NIV) – Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.
And He never gave you a spirit of fear (2 Tim. 1:7 (NIV) – For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.)
Ps. 27:3(NIV) – Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war breaks out against me, even then I will be confident.
Isaiah 41:10 (NIV) – “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
In closing, as we’re about to go into a new year, a new season realise, that God’s Word is so very clear about one thing, we don’t have to fear anything!
Isaiah 43:1 (NIV)- But now, this is what the Lord says- he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.”
No fear of man, fear of the past or future, the unknown, sickness or death should affect my life in any way as I believe & apply God’s Word in my life, amen!
We can go into 2020, fearlessly forward, for with Christ in the vessel, we can smile at the storms, amen!
May God bless His word to every heart tonight, Amen.