Well, Independence Day is just about here in the United States. Just over two months ago there was a significant Independence celebration in Guyana—50 years. Independence is about freedom. As a country, you’re now free to determine your course. This is also true of the young adult, or the person who had been incarcerated but is now free, or even freedom from an oppressive/depressing job or other situation. It’s a great time. It’s time to celebrate. Yet, with freedom comes fear, often unacknowledged.
Why are you so afraid? Let’s look at three reasons why freedom brings fear and how to move past that fear.
You’re Now Free but You’re Facing Unknown Terrain
This freedom that you have gained has put you in a new, unknown place. You have to learn how to behave differently. The security you enjoyed before, however dubious, is gone. You’re dealing with new people, new circumstances, and new rules. You have to interact and behave differently, learning new skills and attitudes as you go along. While you need to be aware of this and exercise some caution, you do not need to be afraid of this new arena. God is with you. Go boldly, seeking God’s wisdom and strength.
You’re Now Free but What If You Mess Up?
When you’re on your own, there is always the possibility that you will mess up. You know what? You will. A toddler learning to walk falls down. However, that toddler gets back up and sooner or later is able to walk without falling. When navigating a new terrain you’re sure to have some missteps. Anticipate that you will. Don’t allow the fear of doing so to hold you back from going forward boldly. What’s the good of being free if you remain paralyzed by fear that you may do something incorrectly? God is with you. Go boldly, relying on God’s grace.
You’re Now Free but You Might Lose It
You’re now free but, does it seem too good to be true? Are you afraid that someone will come and snatch it away from you? Well, it could happen, I guess. However, what about if instead of shrinking in fear you remain vigilant? Instead of shrinking in fear take ownership of your actions. Use critical thinking to sift through whatever information you receive. Don’t go back to being dependent on others for everything. Of course we live interdependently, but that’s different from allowing others to think for you, etc. You’re now free and you have a big say in whether or not you keep your freedom. God is with you. Go boldly asking God for discernment and agency to remain free.
Yes. It’s great that you’re now free. Freedom is wonderful. Celebrate. Cast aside fear and face the world boldly with God.
I will bless the Lord at all times;
his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
I sought the Lord, and he answered me,
and delivered me from all my fears (Psalm 34:1, 4 NRSV).
Get closer to God and gain a deeper understanding of who God is.
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