Fear is Not My Future!

Jeremiah 29:11 (KJV) says, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”

Jeremiah 29:10-14 (NASB) says, “10“For thus says the LORD, ‘When seventy years have been completed for Babylon, I will visit you and fulfill My good word to you, to bring you back to this place. 11‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. 12‘Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13‘You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. 14‘I will be found by you,’ declares the LORD, ‘and I will restore your fortunes and will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you,’ declares the LORD, ‘and I will bring you back to the place from where I sent you into exile.’”

1 John 4:15-19 (NASB) says, “15Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world. 18There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. 19We love, because He first loved us.”

Too many people are living their lives in fear. Their decisions aren’t based on faith and living out their purpose in life, but it is simply fear-motivated. From being afraid of what other people think of them to taking a risk and failing, it is much easier to live life comfortably and without skepticism. Needless to say, it doesn’t have to be this way. We do not have to allow our spirit of fear to dominate our minds or heart. God is greater than any fear, and His perfect love will drive it out! But we have to be willing to receive and abide in His precious love!
In Jeremiah, God’s people were told that they would be in exile in Babylon for 70 years, and they were not to wait until the 70 years were completed to start “living their life.” The prophet Jeremiah encouraged them to “build houses, live in them, plant gardens, eat produce, get married, have families, seek the welfare of the city and pray to the LORD on its behalf” (Jeremiah 29:5-7). If we are not careful, we can fall prey to the same trap. We do not have to wait until we are older to start living the best life we can for God! We can start right now!
They were also to not be influenced by prophets or diviners in the land who went against the true Word God gave to Jeremiah. What people dream or speak should confirm what God has already said to your heart! If it goes against what God has already shown you, then do not accept it! God’s Word to you in secret will always triumph over someone else’s opinions or feelings! 
If you want to know what God’s plans are for you, just know they are peace and prosperity, a future and a hope. Any destiny outside of that is not the nature or will of the LORD! It is more than praying to God for what you want, but it is delighting yourself in Him to the place He gives you what you want (Psalm 37:4). He knows what you have need of before you even ask (Matthew 6:8)! Therefore, we should have the courage to trust in God and not allow fear to dictate our future. This is how it is accomplished:
  1. You mark your own way successful by meditating on the LORD! Joshua 1:8 (NASB) says, “This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success. “
  2. When making a decision concerning the future, here is what to keep in mind:  seek what the will of the LORD is, go with your greatest passion, and don’t pursue a career where student loans will be paid off until you retire!  There is a difference between a hobby and a career! Colossians 3:17 (NASB) says, “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.” Proverbs 22:7 (KJV) says, “The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.”
  3. It is ok to not have everything set in place. For example, if you are preparing for college, it is perfectly fine to change your majors. If you had everything in place, faith would not be required! Goals can be the same, but the plans may change to get there! Acts 16:6-10 (NASB) says, “6They passed through the Phrygian and Galatian region, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia; 7and after they came to Mysia, they were trying to go into Bithynia, and the Spirit of Jesus did not permit them; 8and passing by Mysia, they came down to Troas. 9A vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing and appealing to him, and saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.” 10When he had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.” For the early church, the goal was still to fulfill the Great Commission, but the way that was mapped out had to change due to preaching to the most fertile ground at the time, which in this case wasn’t in Asia. 
  4. Dreams > Fears.  Acts 7:9-16 (NASB) says, “9“The patriarchs became jealous of Joseph and sold him into Egypt. Yet God was with him, 10and rescued him from all his afflictions, and granted him favor and wisdom in the sight of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and he made him governor over Egypt and all his household. 11“Now a famine came over all Egypt and Canaan, and great affliction with it, and our fathers could find no food. 12“But when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent our fathers there the first time. 13“On the second visit Joseph made himself known to his brothers, and Joseph’s family was disclosed to Pharaoh. 14“Then Joseph sent word and invited Jacob his father and all his relatives to come to him, seventy-five persons in all. 15“And Jacob went down to Egypt and there he and our fathers died. 16“From there they were removed to Shechem and laid in the tomb which Abraham had purchased for a sum of money from the sons of Hamor in Shechem.” Joseph’s dream he thought initially was to be the greatest in his family, that his brothers and parents would bow down to him. The dream of God over him was that he would use his position to give God glory, to bring salvation to his people in a time of famine. Joseph did not originally realize that his dream would lead him to a pit and sold into slavery because of the jealousy of his brothers. He did not realize that his dream would lead to false accusations that would imprison him for 2 years. A dream will present jealousy and betrayal from others, but just know that as long as you stay humble, God will be with you the entire time. Dream big because your God is that much bigger.
  5. Don’t make a decision based on fear or rebellion, resulting from trying to please or displease a certain group of people! Proverbs 29:25 (NASB) says, “The fear of man brings a snare. But he who trusts in the LORD will be exalted.”