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Winning the Battle of Fear One Mind at a Time

 


Aloha Ladies! Welcome back!

 

If you were with me last week, you know that we talked about the power of fear- how it hinders and keeps us from God's best. We talked about steps to overcome fear and walk in boldness and courage.   

 

But I have a confession. I left out an essential component - one that is so crucial it can make the difference between success and failure.   Don't get upset- I did it on purpose because it deserves a dedicated episode. 

 

Now, before I tell you this essential truth- I want to take a walk down memory lane- taking you back to 1989.  

 

Let’s go..

 

It's in the wee morning hour – still, pitch dark outside. I'm violently awakened by yelling and bright lights. I jump from the bed, disoriented and disheveled, and frantically try to get dressed. 

 

“Move it, move it, move it!”  Voices shout in booming tones.

 

I quickly fall in line with the bodies of others, like a herd of panicked horses, as we crash down the stairs and bolt into the darkness; no time for personal hygiene, no time to even lace our boots. Panting and out of breath from adrenaline and fright, we file into formation and doubts immediately flash across my mind- “What in the world have I done?”  

 

I’m eighteen, alone, far from home, and in a very strange place.

 

From all observations, I am the smallest (@ 4'11 & only 85 pounds) and seemingly the weakest. I draw immediate attention from the Drill Instructors and quickly find myself surrounded- insults and in-your-face screaming- just like the movies portray.

 

Day one of basic military training.

 

It was the most challenging and life-altering time of my young life. Weeks filled with physical and mental exhaustion, deprivation, fear, homesickness, depression, and self-doubts. 

 

I quickly learned to follow orders and the art of not standing out.   

   

In a male-dominated system, where weakness and fear are detested, I felt like a young David facing the colossal Goliath. Anxiety was a constant companion; prayer was a necessity, and I instinctually knew that God was my only hope in getting through this successfully.

 

So, when fear became almost paralyzing, when I didn't think I could run another step, or when faced with an insurmountable obstacle, I would whisper this to myself from Philippians 4:6-7: "Do not worry Noelle, ask God for what you need, always asking Him with a thankful heart and He will provide." 

  

No matter the situation or the request, God always answered and provided exactly what I needed …. without fail.   

 

This is how I began my adult life. 

 

I wish I could tell you the succeeding years of my life were filled with rainbows and sunshine, but that wouldn't be true.

 

Life is hard and filled with many challenges that resurrect old fears and doubts.

 

As I reflect on the times I've faced fears and uncertainties, God’s peace was always present. From basic training to moving to Fairbanks, Alaska, in the dead of winter at 60 degrees below zero, to being held hostage by an irate armed solider, to facing a sexual predator, even to giving birth to my beautiful daughter with no family support nearby, transitioning to civilian life with no job in place, traveling to Africa on a missionary trip, and even moving to Hawai’i during COVID not knowing a single person and having no job. Every single time, God's peace was always present. 

 

Marcus Aurelius once said, “You have power over your mind- not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.”

 

Now, I've come a long way from that tiny, terrified airman; I’ve faced many giants, and I can attest to these words- that only God can control the outside events. But when we align our minds with God- we can overcome!

 

The power over your mind this is the critical component- having the right mindset.  

 

Without it, we risk losing the battle.   

 

Yes, ladies- we are in a battle, and it's not just about fear.

 

Please make no mistake: there is a battle going on, and our enemy’s number one priority is to take us out, and it begins in our mind! 

 

The very place we differ from every other creature- a mind that can communicate, read, write, dream, create, express, learn, understand, and remember.

 

This is where the battle is won and lost in the mind; thus, we must have a Biblical mindset.   So today I want to discuss two of Chuck Pierce’s books- one is title "God's Unfolding Battle Plan" and the other is "A Time to Advance," where he discusses the importance of understanding this battle and how to win.   To summarize this concept, he says:  

 

"If we hope to move forward in complete victory, we must transform our minds to think the way God thinks. We must adopt His thoughts for today rather than our own. One of the greatest wars will take place on the battlefield of the mind. For every process of moving into a new dimension, change is necessary. Mindsets have to be altered. Old patterns must make way for new ones. Ultimately, we must think differently."

 

We must think differently…. We must evolve. 

 

But before we can alter our "mindsets," we must first understand them. 

 

Basically, a mindset is what directs and controls the way we think and act.   Thus, how we react to the world around us is unconsciously determined by our mindset.

 

Now, here’s what I find so fascinating: Pierce argues that our mindsets can actually be traced back to three categories of humans in the Bible: Barbarians, Greeks, and Hebrews, and each one represents a different mindset.

  

Most of the Old Testament world had a Barbarian mindset. Now, I don't want you to get hung up or offended by the word Barbarian, as it simply means "foreigner."   What's important here is that a Barbarian mindset operates from the principle of FEAR. Fear is what motivates and controls; it the primary human emotion. A people filled with fear are far more easily dominated, manipulated, and controlled. A Barbarian society is ruled by tyranny and is a dictatorship. This mindset is Satan's favorite way of operating as the oppressor who comes to “steal, kill, and destroy.” 

 

With a Barbarian mindset- where there is fear, there is no freedom.

 

Next, we have the Greek mindset, which, by the time of the New Testament, Ancient Greeks were moving away from Grecian gods and instead made everything about themselves. They believed that utopia comes when people rule themselves in harmony, and thus, democracy was born. They thought "knowledge was power" and that they could control and manipulate the outcomes if they could understand how something occurs. Intellect is supreme. This mindset is Satan's Plan B as he will make you think you are good and that everything's under your own control; all the while, you are missing out on God’s best. 

 

With a Greek mindset- You are the master of your destiny.

 

Lastly, we have the Hebrew mindset, which is the same as the "Biblical mindset."  Now, I want to make something very clear- You can have a Hebrew mindset and not ethnically be Jewish. Romans 12:2 tells us: "Do not be conformed to the world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind." 

 

A Hebrew mindset is simply one that God's truth has transformed.

 

The Old Testament is a history of how God taught the Jewish people to think differently- to be set apart from the rest of the world.   He established in them a different way to view the world. He taught them about righteousness and repentance, covenants, and biblical life cycles- he taught them the importance of Sabbaths and practical wisdom for success and prosperity. The Old Testament is the ultimate guide to success!

 

In other words, God himself taught the Jewish people to think like Him, and when they do, they prosper and succeed!   They walk in freedom!

 

Don't believe me? All you have to do is look at the stats:  Jews make up less than half of one percent of the world's population, but they consistently have made up more than twenty percent of the Forbes 400 list of the wealthiest people in the world. Not to mention, in societies where they are not persecuted, they tend to rise to positions of wealth and power in numbers far exceeding their percentage of the population. 

 

In other words, the cream always rises to the top!

 

Let's look at how this practically  plays out by applying these mindsets to this question- “How to Get Ahead in Life?”

 

The Barbarian would answer, "oppress and control others and win by intimidation."

 

The Greek would say how to get ahead in life is “to get more education because knowledge is power.”

 

But then the Hebrew would say how to get ahead in life, "Is to walk in God's favor because that's the only true way to succeed." 

 

Do you see the differences in these mindsets?   Each unconsciously influences how the question is processed and the response chosen.  The Barbarian is influenced by fear, the Greek by pride, yet the Hebrew is neither.  The Hebrew is only influenced by God.  

 

So here’s my question… What kind of mindset do you naturally have? 

 

Believe it or not, many people today have a barbarian mindset and they don't even know it. They think they can dominate or intimidate others to get their way (that’s that bully mentality), or a barbarian mindset is simply controlled by fear- that person is always in a crisis, waiting for that other shoe to drop, or constantly thinking worst case scenario.   Both suggest a barbarian mindset probably instilled from your family of origin or from a traumatic event.

 

For me, I've operated most of my life under the Greek mindset. Work hard, play hard believing that accomplishments and success come from dedication and education. Much of the American dream is built upon this Greek mindset – saying that we can do anything and accomplish anything if we set our minds to it. It's more about self than God. Sadly, most American churches have more of a Greek mindset than a Hebrew one. Because it's what we’ve been taught!           

 

The Bible tells us in Proverbs 4:23- “More than anything guard, protect your mind, for life flows from it.” 

 

Therefore, how do we guard and protect our minds so that we, too, can have a biblical Hebrew mindset where we can have the freedom to walk confidently, knowing our success is based not on us but on the Lord?

 

To do that we must TRANSFORM our minds.

 

Again, Romans 12:2 says, "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what the will of God is, what is good and acceptable and perfect." 

 

This is accomplished in two ways:

 

FIRST- Mediate on God’s word. This means reading God's word and thinking about it, pondering it, chewing on it, and dwelling on it.   Let it sink into your heart, mind, and soul.   Mediating on God's word will fill your mind with God’s thoughts.  

 

SECONDLY,  you must (this is so crucial) “take every thought captive.” 

 

Every crazy thought- even the small ones that seem innocent. 

 

Let's face it- haven't we all found ourselves in a place where, in one minute, everything is fine, and then, the next, we are spiraling out of control?    I cannot be the only person who wants to go to "worst case scenario” oftentimes.

 

It’s when we aren’t being mindful that we get in trouble.   We easily fall into despair, fear, deception, offense, and confusion. 

 

That's why we must consider what we are thinking about and why—questioning whether it aligns with God's word—discerning whether we are applying a biblical mindset or we are operating under one of Satan's plans. 

 

Now for the final and, I believe, the most powerful step- taking it all to our Good Father in prayer…. repenting of our wrong mindsets and simply asking Him to give us a mind like Christ.  

 

We will stumble and have moments when our old mindsets try to take over, but that's why we mediate on God's word and we take our thoughts captive.   This gives us the ability to see where our thinking is wrong- where our enemy is trying to manipulate and deceive- where fear and lies are creeping in…. then we take them to our good Father, and He replaces them with His thoughts- that are always good, right, pure, lovely, and true!      

 

Ladies, when you set your mind right- God will always do the rest! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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