Is Fear Your Ruler?

As I skim across news highlights, I see headlines such as “Post-election Grief is Real: Here’s What You Can Do About It,” “Trump, To Advance Controversial Pipelines,” “How Do You Preserve Your Mental Health Despite the 2016 Election.” This isn’t just a reality on the news, but it is also present as I walk through the halls at work and at the grocery store in the muffled conversations of political uncertainty.

So what is at the base of each of these conversations? FEAR. Fear of what the future holds and fear of the unknown. Admittedly, politics is often a topic that I like to avoid in my own life. When conversations turn toward politics, my muscles become tense, and I nervously wait for an argument to break out. In this moment, I can literally feel the fear.

As soon as I realized the hold fear had on me, I knew I needed to address it in my own life. 2 Timothy 1:7 states, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” This is just one of the many verses that tells us not to fear. What does that mean in my own life? It means I no longer have to avoid the conversation of politics out of fear. No matter what happens, I can confidently face the future whether good or bad knowing that God is our ultimate ruler. Viewing God as our ultimate ruler puts a whole new perspective on politics…one of “power and of love and of a sound mind.”

Unfortunately, conversations around money are not much different than the conversations around politics. Article titles such as, “Money Is Not About Finances, It’s About Emotions,” “10 Ways to Curb Financial Anxiety When You’re Stressed About Finances,” and “Feeling Blue: 5 Emotions That Can Wreck Your Finances,” are endless. Fear is an overwhelming feeling that causes us to become anxious when financial conversations are brought up and, ultimately, causes us to ignore responsibility surrounding our finances.

As a young child, I saw firsthand how the fear of finances led to destructive results in a family. These are some of my most vivid memories. But thankfully, in the midst of that fear I can hold on to the memories of my mom giving me an allowance at a young age and walking beside me as I learned to be a steward of those resources.

While my mom taught me several wise financial principles early on, I have had to work to overcome my fear within finances just as I have had to work to overcome the fear accompanying political conversations. In both cases, reflecting on 2 Timothy 1:7 to relinquish my fears has brought me tremendous comfort. As you take this verse to heart in your own life, trust that God will give you the ability to overcome your fears and then take note of the change that occurs in your life. I know that if you do, you will enjoy a new found freedom in Christ!