How do we overcome the fear of losing control? Part 1

March 26, 2013

fear of losing control

Many people fear the “what if’s” of life.  It is very easy for us to write a script and fill in the blanks when nothing has happened.  When we go down the “what if” path it causes us to be anxious and fearful.

The “What if” lane is all about the fear of losing control.

How do we overcome the fear of losing control?

We overcome the fear of losing control by taking our minds off the “what if’s” of fear.  What we desire and try to control is really out of our control. The result is fear and an anxious heart that weighs us down.

Here’s a truth that we need to remind ourselves of often:

fear of losing control

The Bible tells us in Philippians 4:8 to think about “whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable …”

We can choose to think about things that will bring us life or we can choose to think about things that we will drain us and wear us down.

An illustration

Extreme skiing is a crazy sport. You have guys on top of a mountain that off dropped off by helicopter skiing straight down at insane speeds. The goal is to miss the trees and not die.  The goal is to get down the mountain as fast as possible.

A past World Champion (Kim Rikkelman) was asked, “How is it you don’t run into the trees?”

He said: “I don’t look at the trees. I look at the spaces in between the trees.”

Life is like this.  We’re traveling fast and instead of looking at the spaces in between we’re focused on the “what if’s” of life … the trees. We have to choose to not look at the ‘what if’s’ but look at the spaces in between.

The “what if’s” can and will drive us nuts.  They will give us an anxious and heavy heart if we let them!

Worry never changes anything for good.

“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” Matthew 6:27 (NIV)

Worry does change things but not for good. It messes up our health, our relationship with God and others.  It messes with our ability to move forward in life. It’s useless stewing without doing – it never changes anything for good.

Ultimately worry keeps us from the goodness of God.  It keeps us from fully experiencing God’s love, peace, joy and contentment, etc.  Worry causes us to fear the “what if’s” but fear is simply False Evidence Appearing Real.

Think about this: Why does a farmer put a scarecrow in his field? So birds don’t eat the crop. Does the scarecrow have any power to harm the birds? No! The only power/weapon the scarecrow has is fear.

Scarecrows are actually advertisements for the best crop.

Here’s the point: Whenever worry throws up a scarecrow (i.e a “what if”) in our life it’s keep us out of God’s field where we can enjoy peace, love, contentment, joy, fulfillment, victory, etc.

God's peace quote

What are you choosing to focus your thoughts on: things that will bring you life or things that will drain you and wear you down?

**** This is part 2 of 3 in a series on “Overcoming the fear of losing control.”

Part 1: The fear of losing control
Part 2: We must take our mind off the “what if’s” of fear.
Part 3: We must put our mind on the “what are’s.”

Kevin Martineau

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I am the Pastor at Port Hardy Baptist Church on Northern Vancouver Island, British Columbia. I am married to my best friend and I have three beautiful daughters.

6 responses to How do we overcome the fear of losing control? Part 1

  1. Love that illustration, Kevin. It’s so true. What we focus and fixate on is what we’ll “hit.” There’s a level of training and preparation and then you just have to go for it. Fear and trusting God can’t go together.

  2. This is truly inspirational, Kevin…specially that illustration..The time we spend worrying about things can well be utilized in doing them away…Where we choose to focus makes the difference.

  3. Yes we can’t control what others do or what happens but what we can control is our thoughts and actions. Let us think about the positive and live life to the fullest.