The Barking Dog, Conquer Your Fears

I was running down the road and taking in all the familiar sights and sounds of my morning route.I ran pass the school, waved at the couple that walks every morning, stepped down off the curb where I know the sidewalk ends, contemplated if I wanted to go for the long or short route and headed forward on the shorter route. Then I smiled as I knew what would happen next... Yep, here came that overly zealous pit bull that still hasn't figured out what I know to be true, there is a fence that fully prevents him from ripping into my flesh.

Today as he came thrashing against the fence I had the realization, "he doesn't scare me at all", and there's several reasons for that. 1) I know where he is and I know when he comes running. I know that no matter what when I pass that house, the dog is coming for me. 2) I know that he is not a threat. I know that the fence provides a barrier and time and time again it has proven to protect me from him.

As soon as I passed him today the Holy Spirit began to speak to me. I remember the first time I ran past that dog, I jumped in the road completely caught off guard while fear shot through me as he ran barking and leaping toward the fence next to me. However, now he's just another part of the running routine, one I'm more than aware of and often hardly give a thought to.

This dog is just like many things we face in life. Fear often runs at us in the unknown. It comes barking and screaming at you to run, hoping that you don't know there is a fence. The enemy plants lies hoping you won't be vulnerable enough to put them in the open so that Truth can override them. Perhaps you've began to see the pattern, every time you're in "this" situation, fear rises up in you. Every time "that" happens you begin to have this pattern of thinking.

Locating our areas of fear and wrong thinking, uncovers the schemes of the enemy. Paul says in 2 Cor. 2:11, "for we are not ignorant of his (satan's) schemes". When you run hard after your fears and take an offensive position on the attack of the enemy you strip him of his power.

Take the time to run at your fears instead of from them. Make the decision to be open and vulnerable with trustworthy community about the areas the enemy is attacking you. Allow them to speak Truth to the lies. Just like that dog, once you've learned when he comes to jump at you, you're prepared for it, and you've already learned that you have a fence in the Holy Spirit, the Word, and community. The enemy has no right to have you living in fear, brokenness, hurt, anxiety, confusion, doubts, etc.

Be Blessed, J. Tate