The late advice columnist Ann Landers use to receive something like 10,000 letters a month. When asked what seems to be the most common topic, she answered that most people seem to be afraid of something. They are afraid of losing their health, their job, or their family. They are afraid of upsetting their neighbor, alienating a friend, or committing a social faux pas. Many are even afraid when there is no reason to be afraid. Ours is a world of fearful people. (Lee Griess, Sermons For Lent/Easter)


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Probably the greatest book on fear ever written in this country was by Basil King and the title was The Conquest of Fear. Here is the quotation: “Go at it boldly, and you’ll find unexpected forces closing round you and coming to your aid.” Isn’t that terrific? “Go at it boldly, and you’ll find unexpected forces closing round you and coming to your aid.”

Long before Basil King, Emerson said, “Do the thing you fear, and the death of fear is certain,” You defeat worry and fear by filling your mind with the certain faith that you can do it. That is the best way to get rid of the worry and fear about those many things that are bothering you. Get out of yourself and do something about it, realizing that your Heavenly Father says to you, “For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.'”


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In a recent sermon, John Huffman noted, “There are all kinds of fears that we confront in our everyday living. I remember an article featured in Time magazine titled “Flying Scared.” It was an exposé of the phobias that many prominent people have when it comes to flying in airplanes. Conductor Andre Previn, actress Joanne Woodward, comedians Bob Newhart and Jackie Gleason and President Ronald Reagan were among some of the prominent personalities listed. Each of them were described as scared of flying.
“On one occasion, while in flight, Ronald Reagan was congratulated because he seemed to have overcome his fear. He immediately snapped back, “Overcome it! I’m holding this plane up in the air by sheer will power.” Some, like Jackie Gleason, would not even step on an airplane. The Biography Channel from time to time shows pictures of him and his entourage making their way across country by train because he refused to step on an airplane.”


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Recent newspaper accounts of the ruler of Iraq are truly fascinating. Though a
man of great power and wealth, Saddam Hussein lives in constant fear. He seldom
sleeps in the same bed two nights in a row. Sometimes he sleeps in a van on a
remote roadside. He has three “doubles.” They look like him and they
are used to divert possible attacks on him. Everyone who comes to meet with him
is strip searched. This includes friends and even relatives! He knows there
are literally hundreds of people who want to kill him. What a horrible way to
live! Contrast that with the peaceful and secure way that you and I live
because Christ lives in us. Because of Christ’s presence, we need have no fear,
because He holds our lives in His hands.


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John Leo, writing in U.S. News and World Report, noted that twins are now more
frequent. Someone said, “I guess it’s because little children are afraid
to come into this world alone!”

Those who think this present age the worst of all possible worlds have not read
very much history! And those who make themselves sick thinking about it need to
read more of His Story, a.k.a. Scripture. Far better is the motto someone
printed up and sold: “If God can Handle Eternity, Surely I Can Handle
Today.”

A believer read in the Bible that “He who keeps Israel neither slumbers
nor sleeps” and said to himself, “There’s no point in both of us
staying awake.” Having said that, he went to sleep and slept soundly.


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