Authored by Steve Hearts
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Who in this world can say they are completely exempt from fear? Most definitely not me. Fear, imaginary or legitimate, has knocked on my door countless of times throughout my life. When I was a child, my mother often read me the following quote: “When fear knocks at your door, send faith to answer it.” I’ve had a couple of incidents where faith not only answered the door, but also helped me conquer my fear.
When I was little, I thought being in a swimming pool was the most awesome thing on earth. But I always stuck to the shallow end. The idea of “launching out into the deep” simply terrified me. Thanks to the encouragement and motivation of a handful of people who encouraged me that I could do it, the paralyzing fear left me when I realized I could float simply by holding my breath. I’ve learned to “dog paddle”—and have since developed a love for the deep end of the pool.
Another thing I feared as a kid was solitude. This fear was partially brought on by nightmares I had in which I was alone in absolute, total silence—and was ambushed by imaginary villains. This fear was conquered through learning to hear from the Lord when in silent or solitary places. I now love and favor moments of solitude—and that fear is a thing of the past.
In spite of the fact that I’m blind, dreams are very real to me. It’s as if I live the same way I do in reality, with all my working senses, except of course, sight. This is why dreams have had such an impact on my imagination. When I was very small, I dreamed that I was taking a shower and the water began to speak in a low, thunderous voice. It also started blowing out air that blew me far away. For a long time after that, I was terrified of taking showers. But after I overcame this ridiculous terror, I relished showers—and still do to this day.
More recently, I have been made to face, and thus have the opportunity to overcome, my fear of failure. Since I always like to put my best foot forward and have my act together, I naturally dread failure or mistakes of any kind. But I have recently discovered that some of the greatest lessons learned in my life were brought on by failure. This realization is teaching me to be open to failure and see it as the learning opportunity which it is. Although of course I never deliberately go looking for it, it is now much easier to accept it and move on.
One of the things that helped me to overcome my fear of failure was sharing songs I had written with other people. I started composing songs when I was about 12. I loved singing them to myself, but sharing them with other people always scared me. As time went by, though, the Lord kept strengthening this gift He’d given me; I began to take more initiative to share my songs with other people—deciding not to care what others thought or said. Many of those who heard my songs were moved and encouraged by them, which in turn encouraged me. Now the fear I previously had in regard to this is totally absent.
Are there still fears in my life to be overcome? Of course! As a matter of fact, it was while asking the Lord for His help with this very thing that I was reminded of all the past fears I have already overcome, and was inspired to write this article.
David Berg1 had much to say on this topic. Here are two of my favorite quotes of his: “When fear displaces faith, then you’ve got problems. But if you cling to God and the Lord and His Word, and replace fear with faith, then you have solutions.” The other quote is, “Face your fears in the power of His Spirit, on the promises of His Word—and you cannot fail.”
The apostle Peter did just that when he stepped out of the boat on a stormy sea. As long as he kept his eyes on Jesus, he stayed above the water. It was only when he paid more attention to the wind and waves than to Jesus that he began to sink. Being willing to face our fears and keeping our eyes on Jesus is an unbeatable combination that will give you the power to overcome anything you might face. You too will walk on water.
1 David B. Berg (1919–1994), founder of The Family International
Read by Amber Larriva. Music by sindustry(CC). Copyright© 2013 by The Family International