For God has not given us the spirit of fear,
but one of power, and of love and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)
Starting this blog is pretty daunting. If I am honest, I have no idea what I am doing. I spend hours trying to figure out how everything works, what to write, how to write it etc. The stress comes even before I get the opportunity to write my first post! I sit and stare at the screen hoping the words will somehow appear in my mind, I find myself scrutinising every comma out of fear that I am doing something wrong.
Fear has always been a determining factor for me, I shy away from opportunities that could be great because I’m scared it won’t succeed. It’s like the pain of putting so much effort into something, only for it to not work out, largely outweighs the sacrifice of not starting it at all.
But with this mentality, how would anyone succeed?
I realised that my biggest fear was starting something as it makes failure a possibility I did not want to face. The idea of throwing all you have at something only to have it tumble back down on you is an intimidating thought.
However, the Bible tells me that fear does not come from God. It is not something He wants for me. Thomas Edison once said, “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realise how close they were to success when they gave up”
The majority of the time, fear is what drives people into failure. As Michelle Obama stated, “Failure is a feeling long before it becomes an actual result” in other words, its a mindset. Once you start something with the fear of it not working out, then you are already setting yourself up.
When Edison was asked how it felt to fail 1,000 times, he replied by saying “I didn’t fail 1,000 times, the lightbulb was an invention with 1,000 steps”
The reporter who asked Edison the question had a different mindset. Hearing how many times he failed and tried again on the same project seems like something only the elite can do. Edison’s reply, however, shows that it is how you view your obstacles that ultimately determine the outcome. Edison was correct in his outlook, he saw each setback as a step closer to the finished product. Which ended up being spectacular.
This is a great example of a sound mind. One that knows the trick to success is simply not giving up. ‘Just keep swimming’. Right now it may seem like nothing, so insignificantly small that giving up makes more sense than continuing. Sometimes, though, letting go of what makes sense and following your God-given dream will be the thing that drives you into unexplainable success in what you do.
Dr Caroline Leaf defines mindsets as an attitude, or cluster of thoughts with attached information and emotions that generate a particular perception.
This is what shapes your view of the world, yourself, others and everything around you. We are gifted with exceptionally powerful and complex minds. Each individual reading this is so vastly unique and talented, but many are unable to see this due to toxic mindsets.
The way you view a situation has all the power to change the outcome. This is why God has not given us the spirit of fear. He knows that it would make us cower from doing things that make this life really worth living. Fear keeps us quiet and makes us small. It suppresses our power and our ability to show and fully express love.
Toxic mindsets keep you caged, they make you feel unworthy and unable but my Bible tells me that I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength. (Philippians 4:13)
God has given us the gift of a sound mind but we need to know how to access it. Heres how: Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:2)
We have the ability to renew our minds. Our brains are neuroplastic, it is ever changing. A pattern of thought is not concrete, no matter how ingrained you may believe it to be. Once we start truly believing the word and developing a genuinely positive attitude towards life, we develop the capacity to succeed. When we are able to set our minds on things above (see Colossians 3:2) you realise that our possibilities to live fruitfully are endless.
By changing your outlook and looking at your life through the eyes of God, you will be able to see that all things work out for your good and His glory (see Romans 8:28). By this, I mean once you begin to realise that, following Christ, you only move forward and never backwards it gives you divine confidence. You gain the ability to fearlessly pursue your dreams and develop the resilience to not give up then things get tough. After all, I serve the God of the impossible.
It is all a process though. It’s not possible to change a mindset in a day, there is no quick fix or a special positive affirmation that would change your whole life in a week. It comes down to not giving up and pure hard work.
Letting go of fear in a world that thrives on terror is no small feat. Getting rid of thoughts that tell you you’ll never measure up or that dream is too big to achieve is a huge deal. That doesn’t mean it’s not possible. It is! Its a fight, and it takes a while to see lasting progress.
God has given us the spirit of power, of love and of a sound mind. There is peace following Jesus, even in the struggle. Once you teach your mind to let go of fear, you have won.
So, to quote Nike “Just do it”. Start whatever it is you want to start, just because you can.
You don’t need people to root for you, a lot of times they won’t. But I’m cheering you on and above all, heaven will rejoice once you start taking the steps towards the abundant life Christ died for you to have.
It’s yours already! Go get it.
You are Fearfully and Wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). You are sculpted by the hands of God, before you were formed in your mother’s womb He knew you and set you apart to be unique (see Jeremiah 1:5). There is no dream that is too big for God. In fact, in Ephesians 3:20, He tells us that He is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all you can ask or imagine.
We do not have the spirit of fear, but one of power, and of love and of a sound mind.
Through Jesus, we are promised heaven. We are promised an eternity spent with the one who is love its self. To be face to face with the one who created you and I, the stars and the sea. The Holy Spirit, also known as the advocate comes to live within us providing us with an endless flow of love, peace and power from The Creator.
God is gracious, He has given us a sure way into the kingdom. Jesus died because the punishment for sin is death (We all sin, its a part of human nature). So, God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we can be made right with God through Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:21). He was sacrificed, bore the punishment we deserved, but He was raised to life again and is at the right hand of God interceding for us (see Romans 8:34) Now, because of Him, we get to live in joy, peace and love. However, this is a life you have to choose.
If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is LORD” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. (Romans 10:9-10)
So, if this is a choice you want to make, here’s a little prayer you can say out loud:
God, I know I have sinned,
But I also know that your love is bigger than it all.
Jesus, in you, I am forgiven
and today I want to receive all that you have for me.
So, Jesus, I confess with my mouth,
that you alone are LORD
No one above or before you.
I believe in my heart,
That you died for my sins
and on the third day,
God raised you from the dead.
For this, Jesus,
I am forever grateful.
If you have made this choice today I can honestly say, it is the best one you have ever made.
Now, where ever you are, drop me an email, I would love to say congratulations! Further, try finding a church or anyone who you can talk to, its always best to walk this journey with other people.