We know from 2 Timothy 1:7 that fear is a spirit. The verse says, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” What is a sound mind? It is measured by peace which brings ordered thoughts. Fear brings disorder not only in our mind but in our bodies. We are created with a fight or flight reaction.
The Lord built that into our whole body’s system. When we face real danger, our fight or flight mechanism kicks into high gear. Our adrenals pump adrenaline into our muscles. Our heart rate and breathing increase. Other functions, such as digestion decrease or stop. Our body returns to normal function when the danger has passed.
What happens when we are anxious, yet there is no real danger? The same fight or flight mechanism is engaged. Chronic anxiety and fear deplete our immune system. Philippians 4:6 says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.”
What does the next verse say? Verse 7 says, “And the PEACE of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Fear and peace affect our hearts. There is such great instruction for us in Isaiah 26:3. It says, “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.”
When I think of the word ‘stayed’ I remember back to when I was called into the ER. A friend of mine was flown from her small town to a larger one via helicopter. Her heart had stopped while enroute. I got there as they were putting a port into her chest. There was a lot of commotion and noise from the machinery. Her eyes were open and fixed. The Lord spoke into my heart: this is what I mean to fix your eyes on Me.
Hebrews 12:1 was written about our walk with the Lord. It was illustrated as a race. Verse 2 says, “Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” The word ‘looking’ in the Strongs means: undivided attention, looking away from all distractions in order to fix one’s gaze on one object.”
Anxiety that is rooted in fear that divides our thoughts. We become disordered in our mind, because it is casting something in front of us that is not there. It is perceived through our thought patterns, but we are not facing real danger. Think of panic attacks. They come out of seemingly nowhere. In truth, they are a fiery dart lobbed by the enemy to distract us.
The cardiologist that I listened to said that the number one enhancement to our health is enlightenment. The second is peace. Peace is a gift that is irrevocable. We never lose peace, we just cover it over with stress, fear, anxiety, and worry. John 14:27 says, “Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” The key word is let. That is up to us. His peace abides forever. Let us remember the truth of the gift within and not allow anything to usurp its place for our health and well being.