“For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7).
This verse is often quoted when we talk to others about fear. It’s prayed over us when we humbly confess our anxieties. Yes, there’s hope when God talks about love, power and a sound mind. But I must confess, I did not like this scripture.
When I did eventually let my guard down and share my “condition” with other Christians, their canned response would inevitably be: “But God hasn’t given you a spirit of fear.” Their eyes would squint and their head would tilt as they stared at me with confused looks on their faces.
Even though they didn’t say it, here’s what I heard, “You’re a Christian, but apparently you’re not walking with God. What have you done wrong?”
I know they meant well, but most people just don’t understand this condition. How could they? They have never experienced the terror and torment.
So, for a long time, whenever I heard that scripture quoted, my skin would crawl. I would play back those piercing, painful words and looks from people. Even with God, I would cry out, “Well if you haven’t given me a spirit of fear, then why do I feel so afraid?”
It wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I began to understand this verse. A pastor said to me, “Russ, God hasn’t given you this spirit of fear. Yes, the enemy may have, but God hasn’t. God wants you to have love and power and a sound mind. That’s his desire for you.”
It’s true. God has good plans for you (Jeremiah 29:11). Those plans do not include fear, torment or bondage. Your Father’s plans are peace, power and purpose.
He has not given you a spirit of fear–a spirit that binds you and holds you back. He has given you his Holy Spirit–the Spirit of comfort and counsel. The Spirit of peace, power and purpose.
Prayer: Father, thank you that you understand me even when others don’t. I believe that you want what is best for me–power and love and a sound mind. I claim these gifts and resist every “spirit of fear” by the power of your Holy Spirit.