Are you ultra-concerned about being a “good Christian” and doing the “right” thing, praying the “right” way, having the “right” attitude, and making the “right” choices?
Do you find yourself desperately following “do and don’t” lists, afraid that you might step out of line?
Are you often afraid that God is going to blast you with a lightning bolt for saying or doing something wrong?
Do you feel like you are walking on eggshells with Him, always afraid of displeasing Him?
Do you feel like no matter how much you strive to please God and do the right thing, you are always letting Him down?
Are you afraid that He really isn’t listening to you or really doesn’t care that much about your “little problems” or aching heart?
Do you hesitate to pray or share your concerns with God because you are afraid of burdening Him? Afraid to have Him waste His time or energy on you, especially when there are greater tragedies and concerns in the world that deserve God’s attention more than you do?
Is it hard for you to share your true feelings, thoughts, fears, and doubts with God because you are afraid of disappointing Him or earning His wrath? So you put on a nice, polished, acceptable, capable, “good Christian” mask?
Are you afraid of needing God? Of truly, desperately needing Him? Relying on Him? (To really need Him is to be really vulnerable. If we let ourselves need someone, we take the risk of getting let down, of being dropped on our faces. And so, many of us don’t risk needing others, even God. We try our best to be self-sufficient and self-reliant, even with God. Which doesn’t work. Eventually we will all find our self-sufficiency tested, in order that we might learn to rely on Him.)
Deep down, do you doubt that God is a good, loving God who really does want the best for you? Do you see Him more as a God who is unfair, harsh, or indifferent?
Have you ever secretly wondered, How could God ever really love me? I’m just . . . me! Messed-up me! Surely, He could never forgive me or want a relationship with me?
Whether or not we admit it, many of us have these kinds of fears. And they hinder our spiritual walks and our relationships with Him, others, and ourselves. So how do we deal with these kinds of spiritual fears?