Discover Gospel-Shaped Life, Growth, and Leadership

Show Notes – Episode 13

The Gospel and Fear

What are the fears that hold us back? Cary and Andrew unpack a biblical view of success, the topic of fear, and how the gospel shapes our success and fear.

There is an unhealthy fear of fright and terror; and faithlessness will cause me to not just be cautious, it will paralyze me.

We need to differentiate between a healthy fear and an unhealthy fear. 

    • Awe and reverence, the natural response to a big God
    • Terror and panic, this is not what Scripture calls us to if we are believers

Question: Is it wrong for us to want to see our ministries go forward and grow?

It is not biblically wrong to want a bigger audience unless my identity and my need for validation demands it. If my identity needs that, I need to go back to the gospel.

Paul is a good example of this motive to reach more people. He was not trying to be someone; he was obeying a call.

The constant tension managed in ministry is restfulness and the passion to go forward. When we are healthy leaders, the gospel will not let you rest yourself into lethargy, but it will also not let you drive yourself into calamity.

Identify Your Fears

What are you afraid of right now? What is that next step that you are procrastinating on? Identify those nagging things that you know God is leading you to do, but you are procrastinating on doing.

Article: Fear of Success: Do You Have One of These 6 Symptoms?

1. What if I don’t actually want the spotlight on me?

There is a surrender and sacrifice involved in leading, speaking to, and pastoring more people. If we love the gospel, God’s people, and Jesus’ mission, it is impossible to not care about getting the gospel to more people. The downside is, we are afraid of the spotlight. There are men in the ministry who are comfortable speaking to a smaller segment of friends and family. Unintentionally, it has become a cozy comfort zone. The idea of expanding the gospel to more people definitely makes you more vulnerable to those people, so there is fear that will often hold us back.

2. What if a gathering audience brings out detractors, trolls, and assorted “meanies”?

In the article, this secular psychologist unintentionally describes Christianity.

3. What if, when the time comes, I won’t deliver?

The fear of my accountability to Jesus should outweigh the fear of not being able to deliver.

We often are fearful that we will break what has been fixed.

As a spiritual leader, you are only an imposter if you pretend you’re not struggling. We put on the cloak of an imposter when we think we have to pretend to be living up to all that we teach. 

Personal Questions:

  1. What things are you fearful of that God has been leading you to act upon?
    2. Am I identifying and admitting my fears in a healthy way?
    3. Is my identity as a believer and leader being shaped by unhealthy fears?
    4. Is my awe of God greater than my fear of failing?

Team Questions:

  1. What are some steps of faith that God is calling us to that are being paralyzed by our fears?
    2. How can we better encourage our leaders to go forward even when we are fearful?