Recently, I read The Crossroads by Beverly Lewis. The main character, who was in the midst of trials, tells herself that fear is not faith in order to bolster her courage. It becomes her motto of sorts. I have encountered a seeming multitude of stressful situations in the last year or so, and I am trying to adopt the motto myself. When faced with trials, our first response is often fear. We worry about the future and wonder what we will do, but this is not the life of faith.
In Mark chapter 4, the disciples are with Jesus in a boat away from shore when a storm arises. Jesus is asleep, and they wake Him up in fear. In verse 40, “Then he said to them, ‘Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” Jesus then calms the storm. Despite the fact that Jesus was on the ship with them, the disciples were still afraid. How often is this true of our own behavior? As Christians, Christ is always with us, along with the Holy Spirit, yet we often cry out in fear.
When I feel fear and anxiety trying to overcome me, I repeat the phrase fear is not faith to remind myself that Jesus is present and that God is in control of the situation. I have nothing to fear. Faith is trusting that God will take care of us and our situations in His own way and that we only have to rest in His strength. It is a lot easier said than done because we live in a fallen world that is prone to fear and turmoil, but if we keep our eyes on Him, then we can overcome.
Already today, even before writing this post, I have had to repeat the phrase several times. Each time I think of it I am reminded of God’s love and presence, and it changes my focus from my circumstances to where it ought to be…on God. It is a daily struggle, sometimes even minute by minute, but with God’s help it can be done. So, whenever you feel overwhelmed and afraid, remember that fear is not faith and look to God for help. He will never fail to give it.