Comedian Chris Rock made the comment, “I’m not afraid of dying, I just don’t want to be there when it happens.”
I’m with him all the way. I would have to say that death has always been one of my greatest fears. Not so much death itself, but the way in which I will die. Will it hurt? Will I feel myself slip away? Will I be afraid? What will I be thinking when it happens? These are the questions that plague my mind not only in regards to my own death, but when I hear about the death of others as well.
Something that has taken me a long time to come to grips with is how death is no big deal to God. It merely is the final step that leads us to Him. I was taught that the first person I’ll see when I die will be Jesus and that has always encouraged me growing up. I’ve pictured myself opening my eyes for the first time in Heaven and seeing Jesus kneeling over me as if waking me up from a nap.
The point is death is not something to fear. Jesus conquered the grave so that death would not be the end of life, but the beginning of life with Him. If we are God’s children, no matter what kind of death the enemy has in store for us, in the end, we will be with the Lord.
Now that that is taken care of, what do we really have to fear in this life? This is coming from the child who was deemed a worrywart. I myself have many fears to overcome, but knowing that God is in control of everything that comes at me is the first step towards a life with no fear. The Bible reminds us constantly that we should not be afraid for God is with us. That is an amazing promise and one that had to be repeated over and over again in order to us to fully grasp it.
It is no secret that fear is a prison. It is one of the strongest tools used by the enemy and I have seen firsthand in my life at how it manipulates people. Fear keeps us from taking risks, and I’m not talking risks like bungee jumping or sky-diving. I am talking about stepping out of your comfort zone in order to do what God has asked us to do—live for Him.
It includes risking what others think of you. It risks relationships, friendships, and being misunderstood. These things are significant in my life and I often struggle with taking the risks. I realize though that if I don’t, I lose out on an opportunity to shine my light to others, especially the ones closest to me. Am I willing to risk being useful to God so I can be liked by the world? The new testament is very clear about the idea of showing preference to the world.
Through my struggle I am learning that in the end the risk is worth the result. So my friends, I encourage you to know what you fear most in this life and strive to overcome it. In the end, you will become a strong force that God can use for His glory.
1 John 2:15, Romans 12:2, 1 John 4:18, Isaiah 41:10