What Do We Say to the Spirit of Fear? – At the Movies 2022

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I will be playing basketball for the first time since the pandemic this Christmas break. I’m not worried. My previous hiatus lasted five years, and my shot was still good. My daughter thinks I’ll embarrass myself, but I’ll be okay if it doesn’t work out.

When we have our family game nights, no matter what part of the country, a handful of people love seeing me lose. Maybe it’s because I talk a lot of trash (I am literally talking trash in a group text with my CedarCreek Game Night Group as I write this), but beating me isn’t all that satisfying. I get over it quickly because the competition matters more than the win. Besides, I’m on a losing streak until I figure out the newest player.

I went through my bachelor’s and master’s programs without checking my grades. I figured the university would let me know if I failed a class. It sounds arrogant, but I was confident that my hard work and attention to detail would pay off. My goal was to hone the skills that would help me live in my purpose.

This may all come off as braggadocious, but I have learned to accept failure with all of those things when I’m confident about my effort. It wasn’t always this way. Fear kept me from playing in front of a crowd as a kid. Timidity stopped me from meeting new people to play games with. Other people’s perceptions stopped me from sharing my writing, especially in school when I had to read it in front of the class. The first two were easier to overcome, but the last one left me paralyzed at presenting myself to others.

2 Timothy 1:7
For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.

Like Timothy, we need a reminder that our fear is not from God. I could’ve used that nugget in high school. I was so scared to get in front of the class. Much like Ruby from the movie CODA, I ran away. My running included skipping British Literature so that I wouldn’t have to share my completed work. I wasn’t close enough to becoming the man who never bothered to check his grades in college. Imagine the future writer failing British Literature.

We face our fears by showing up again. Years ago, I wrote a thank you letter to my British Literature teacher because he tried to stop me from failing his class. Unfortunately, he passed away, so I found his wife on Facebook and wrote to her. She appreciated hearing how much her husband meant to me.

Jesus helps us face our fear, so do not be afraid or discouraged. What do we say to the spirit of fear? Not today.

What are you running from in your life? How do you lean on God when you’re fearful? Do you know fear keeps you from using your gifts from God?

Next Steps:
Take GrowthTrack to humbly receive God’s gifts and learn how to use them. Take time to encourage someone struggling with fear.

God, help me understand that your gifts are full of love and invite me to live a purposeful life. Let me be confident and humble when I use these gifts. I know that fear is present, but I don’t have to receive it and live in it because it’s not from you, God. Amen.

This post was written by Jaron Camp. Jaron is a storyteller and a professional ghostwriter who enjoys using his gifts to write for the LivingItOut. When he’s not developing fictional worlds, researching, and writing, Jaron enjoys watching sports, participating in family game night, and spending time with his wife and four kids.

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