Barrier Breakers – Fear

As a youth ministry we’re doing a series called, “Barrier Breakers.” It’s all about how Jesus has broken any and all barriers that would keep us from accomplishing what God has planned for us to do.

Here is a post my little brother Jeff wrote recently after he spoke to our youth ministry about fear:

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Conquering Fear

The “Good Bye Jeff Party” was over. My eyes were finally dry. I was about to board a plane taking me to somewhere I had never been before. Where I was going was not just new to me geographically, but was a completely new stage of life. For the last 24 & ½ years I have lived comfortably in my parents home where I enjoyed all of its comforts with none of the responsibilities. I was boarding a plane that was taking me to my new career and a new lifestyle. A lifestyle where I would cook for myself, clean up after myself, and in the end, be completely responsible for my own well-being.

As exciting as starting a career was the fears became real to me when people started saying their goodbyes. This fear was strong enough to cripple me. It was strong enough to keep me from reaching my goals. However, that fear I had while boarding the Frontier flight to Oklahoma City could not hold me back. When it comes down to it I was able to overcome this fear by drawing from a strength within me. This strength came from multiple sources.

First, of course, was Jesus. The strength I have in Christ is one that cannot be defeated. I know that the plans Jesus has for my life are good. I know that Jesus is with me every step of the way and I am never alone. Despite not particularly enjoying the style of church I am attending in Oklahoma, the words Jesus has spoken to me since being here are undeniable.

Second, was a strength instilled in me by my family. Although they are not here with me I can still draw from them. One of my greatest fears when it came to moving was not knowing anybody. My family was who I was going to miss the most. It still is kind of sad to me that the last time I saw any of them in person, no eye was dry. My family has given me great strength as I sit alone in Oklahoma City knowing that I can contact anyone of them when I feel weak. Whether it be calling mom or dad, trading hey-tell messages with Erica and the nieces, sharing inside jokes with Shaun on Facebook, or talking with Andy about anything and everything. My family has been instrumental in conquering my fears.

Lastly, is my friends back home. Just like my family they are not here with me. But, I have been able to draw from them to beat fears here in Oklahoma. The cards, the texts, and the tweets about me were tough to read at first. I have been able to use these words and think of what great people God has placed in my life.

To everybody back home:

Thank you from the bottom of my heart, you mean so much to me, I know one day I’ll get back home and we’ll do big things once again.

Drawing from these three sources has given me an ability to conquer the fears in my life. Fears that I now see as irrational. I honestly cannot believe that I was worried about feeding myself. The strange thing about fear is it always seems crazy that you were afraid after the fact. God said “do not be afraid, for I am with you.” It’s amazing how real those words are to me now.

In the end God always wins.

God is on my side.

Therefore I will always win.

All I do is win.

J. Jo

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