Rick Warren on 4 Ways Leaders Can Overcome the Spirit of Fear

There are a lot of things that can make leaders fearful. (Photo by Tom Pumford on Unsplash)

Fears hold us back from God’s best for our lives. As a leader, fear hinders your engagement of God’s mission for your ministry and your church.

When you overcome your fear, your deeper dependence on God advances your personal growth and leadership.

Next month, most of us will be teaching on the Christmas account in the Bible. Fear and overcoming fear are key parts of the narrative. Four times God tells different people in the Christmas story to “fear not.” Today, we know that the Christmas story is Good News—God became flesh in order to save us from our sins. But for those who experienced the Christmas story firsthand, the news scared them to death.

When you read through the Christmas account, you’ll find that the characters faced five of the most common fears in existence. You’ll recognize the fears because we frequently face them in ministry, too.

—The fear of inadequacy (Mary). Mary was a young peasant girl planning to get married. But an angel interrupted her plan by telling her that she was pregnant with the Son of God. It shouldn’t surprise us she felt inadequate.

—The fear of disapproval (Joseph). In Matthew 1:18-20, the angel told Joseph to not be afraid and to take Mary home as his wife. You can imagine the ridicule and shame Joseph expected to face at home if his fiancée was pregnant.

—The fear of unexpected change (the shepherds). Put yourself in the shoes of the shepherds. They’re out lying on the grass and tending their flock of sheep. It’s all quiet. Suddenly, the sky lights up. A huge choir of extraterrestrial beings starts singing loudly. You’d be scared, right? The shepherds were. Their plans for a quiet evening were interrupted.

—The fear of losing control (Herod). The Jews didn’t like Herod—he ruled with a heavy hand because he was paranoid of getting overthrown. His insecurities caused him to lash out when he heard a new “King of the Jews” had been born.

—The fear of being disappointed (Zechariah). Zechariah and Elizabeth had prayed for years and years to have a baby, but it hadn’t happened. They had one setback after another. When Zechariah found out Elizabeth was pregnant, his first instinct was disbelief. He was afraid to get his hopes up.

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SOURCE: Charisma News