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pursuing the upward call with fear and trembling

just a 44 year old man seeking to share my meanderings with the world at large or the blogosphere at small

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Twists and Turns

Sometimes a subject will not let you go. I guess fear is that subject for me. Maybe i will exhaust almost all possible angles of looking at it and finally be done. i can hope can't I??? Lol. I wanted to follow-up on some of what i wrote in my last post. There are so many differing ways fear is dealt with no wonder it seems endless.

I have thought of the origins of fear affecting me, both genetic,environmental and cultural. All of these areas played a part as i believe they do to some extent for all of us, some greater than others. My twist and turn is a kind of paradox. Fear basically stems from the unknown or from some kind of hurt which could happen, be that punishment, pain or abandonment. Death is the great unknown since none of us have come back to tell what happens. Death is an enemy which Gods Word declares itself and hell is the worst and unescapable of all punishments so it would naturally engender fear as a logical extension of what it involves. God is love and Jesus is the only One to resurrect as well as give the gift of eternal life and total freedom from punishment for always. This is perfect antidote for fear right??? Trouble is,for me, my mind finds ways to doubt and worry I am definitely within Jesus arms for certain, especially when the calvinist doctrine creeps in my thinking of there being only a chosen *elect* whom Jesus came to save.

I have a book called *The Thomas Factor* by gary habermas which is an excellent exposition on the whole notion of doubt and faith. He details in his years of counseling and pastoring how many believers struggled over feeling like they had lost their salvation or committed the unpardonable sin or somehow just were outside Gods grasp of them. The fact that so many who are genuine believers in Christ who suffer these doubts serves as a strange comfort to me, because it shows me i am not alone in it. Another comfort and help is to realize that my own feelings, whatever they may be, are not the determiner of my acceptance by Jesus and God. This is HUGE because faith and feeling are inextricably tied together, whether some say they are not. Just how we are designed.

This leads to another twist in facing fear. Who Jesus is, who God is, plays a large factor in handling fear. If They are lacking at all in any way, shape or form, and if They can decide on amy basis that whoever They consider to be unacceptable to Them, then fear has no bounds really. This is why the Bible and its trustworthiness as Gods Word is so very crucial. If the Bible cannot be relied upon, and the Bible purports to be Gods revelation of Himself and Jesus, well then how can They be trusted??? Hope my thought and logical conclusions are clear there.

So, in running all that through my mind, i am helped to see fear as more manageble and to find ways which may be helpful to deal with on a strictly physiological level, which will impact my emotions as well. Love to hear all thoughts on this as always!!!

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