Gaining Freedom from Fear
The Bible contains many comforting statements that reveal God's ever-presence and His ability to comfort, guide, and protect us. These statements, understood in the light of Christian Science, can help us to subdue fear and gain dominion over its suggestions.
Joshua said to the Israelites, "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest." josh. 1:9; And Isaiah heard the Word of God: "Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness....For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee." Isa. 41:10,13;
Fear deprives one of peace of mind. Fear is a negative quality which implies that good is not present and that evil has power to destroy. When fear occupies consciousness, it is manifested in illness, discord, lost opportunities, lack, and so forth. But Christian Science reveals fear for the nothingness that it really is. Mrs. Eddy says, "Fear is a belief of sensation in matter: this belief is neither maintained by Science nor supported by facts, and exists only as fable." Miscellaneous Writings, p. 93;
As we remove fear from consciousness, we gain our dominion over it and the situations it produces. It appears that the situations produce the fear. However, when we analyze our experience correctly and see that it is always the objectification of our own thinking, we shall see that fear in consciousness produces the situation, not vice versa. Therefore fear is a false quality of mortal mind that we must always stay alert to and refuse a place in consciousness.
The demonstration of freedom from fear comes gradually as one advances spiritually. Fear ties in closely with the belief in the reality of material existence. Proportionately as one succeeds in separating himself from the belief of life in matter, he succeeds in removing fear from consciousness.
We need to strive persistently to gain a clearer concept of life as wholly spiritual and good, with no element of fear. I took a great step forward in overcoming fear when I realized that instead of trying to get rid of fear as a reality I should see that there was in truth no fear to overcome. Man, made in the image of God, divine Love, reflects only good. Therefore he neither knows nor experiences fear in any form. As I persisted in thinking this way, the concept of fearless spiritual man became clearer in my thought, and I was no longer conscious of a nagging sense of fear.
What of sudden fear? How does one handle this? How does one free himself of the all-enveloping fear that might mesmerize him at the time of an accident or a sudden illness or an imminent danger?
Since the basis of fear is the belief that God is not present, obviously the way to silence fear is to know that God is present. Reasoning from the understanding of God that one gains in Christian Science, one can find the needed peace of mind. In Science and Health Mrs. Eddy writes, "It is our ignorance of God, the divine Principle, which produces apparent discord, and the right understanding of Him restores harmony." Science and Health, p. 390;
If one sees clearly that God is ever present, filling all space, that He is divine Love, all good, that God is right where the disaster or illness seems to be, one can remove the fear instantly and then see the situation change.
There are other times when fear seems to have impressed mortal mind more strongly and does not leave one's consciousness immediately. At these times one has to continue his declarations of God's allness and ever-presence and of His complete control of all He has created until one becomes solidly convinced that there is no evil present and therefore nothing to cause fear.
Sometimes it is helpful to ask oneself: Do I really know that God is right where I am? Do I understand that God is infinite good and that His goodness fills all space? Do I believe that there is something else besides God? Do I believe that evil is real, or do I know that God is All?
After satisfactorily and convincingly answering these or similar questions, one can end up by saying with assurance, "There is nothing to fear." Christ Jesus said, "Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom." Luke 12:32.
As we acknowledge God's loving presence and infinite care, we can gain freedom from fear and find that heaven and peace of mind are right at hand.