If you’re like me, you can relate when I say it feels like we’re living in ‘crazy times’. The world seems to be moving and changing at speeds that are unprecedented in history. Just in my life time, we have gone from playing Pac-Man video games to having the world at our fingertips (or thumbs) with smart devices and 5G.
I have raised children who are young adults and have younger children as well, so I have seen first hand these affects on human development. Now we are raising our children in a ‘Pandemic’ and things just seem to move faster and become even crazier.
The news cycles are clogged up with dramatic events that would previously taken weeks or months to digest, but there’s no time, there’s the next dramatic event. We are also faced with decisions that could be life altering and feel pressured or that we are not fully informed. I have followed news and current events quite closely from around the world and from multiple and alternative news sources.
I have done this from a deep conviction that we need to know our world in order to love and intercede for it. I can say that I have been down some ‘rabbit holes’ and have felt compelled to seek truth in a world of disinformation and misinformation.
I am not going to discuss anything of that nature other than to share general spiritual truths from which we can operate from, and find common ground with other Christians and people in our lives.
Whether you believe that we are in a Pandemic or a ‘Plandemic’, weather you only follow mainstream media narratives or you’ve been down the darkest rabbit hole of conspiracy theory, you will not be untouched by the effects of FEAR.
Fear seems to be the key motivation for numerous actions and decisions for millions of people. If you’ve read your bible and been a Christian for a while, you will know that is a very common theme throughout the whole scriptural narrative. It has influenced significant decisions of both individuals and nations.
The people of God have been continuously encouraged to have courage and not operate in fear, from Adam right through to the Apostles.
How does fear effect us?
A very basic reaction is what is termed the ‘Flight, Fight or Freeze’ response. This is something that is biologically wired into our brain stems and will produce a powerful response within us both physically, emotionally and spiritually.
If you’ve had any experience with trauma, whether in yourself or others you would have some experience to relate. I will not explore this any more deeply other than to conclude that fear is a powerful force that most people are effected by this in some form or another at this moment.
The secondary effects of fear, is that of worry, anxiety and stress. These are universal things that all people experience in their lives, and are not necessarily destructive or negative given that are proportional and not long term. The long term effects of worry, anxiety and stress can be very destructive to an individual’s physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.
As a Christian, I am reminded of the scripture ‘For the Spirit God have us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self discipline’. It is very clear that God does want us to have fear as our default setting in our lives.
We are to know it’s effects on us and others, and to fight against it by being surrendered to the Spirit and Word do God, which supersedes any outward calamity. Look at the story of Elisha in (2 Kings ch 6) where he was surrounded by an army that had come to seize him.
Elisha saw in the Spiritual realm that God’s army was there, and he prayed for his servant’s eye’s to be opened to this reality. I believe that this is where we need to be living in these particular times. To have vision beyond the news, the natural circumstances and the opinions of others.
Fear used to control
Fear is the primary way evil and darkness controls and destroys people, cultures and countries. A common experience of this is in abusive relationship. Fear is used to control by using threats, violence and manipulation.
People feel anxiety, worry and stress and their ability to make free and informed decisions are hindered. People feel trapped and disempowered, it causes people to self medicate, live in denial and even self harm and suicide.
God’s spirit frees us, it empowers us to see clearly. It gives us hope and courage to face down our giants. Another example of fear being used by evil and darkness is the rise of Hitler and the 3rd Reich. This is a much longer and complex example, but it needs To be understood so that history does not repeat itself. In a simplistic overview, Hitler utilised the suffering of the German people from WW1 and the following years of economic and social struggles.
He pointed the German people’s fear outward, away from their immediate situations, and focussed it on external enemies. By harnessing fear of the Jews and the Bolsheviks, he united them in a common cause and directed them down a horrible road of destruction. By Hitler was someone who undertook the power of harnessing people’s collective fear and weaponising it.
Fear is weaponised today
You had better believe that years of research and billions of dollars have been spent on trying to harness fear to influence and control your life. A common practice that well known for example is the sales technique of ‘keeping up with Jones’s’.
Sales people in much more complex ways are taught how to manipulate and trigger a fear response in the person they are trying to sell to. Sales people are highly trained in numerous techniques to try and push their sales and many of them do consist in triggering the fear response.
Young people have been influenced by ‘FOMO’ or the fear of missing out. They are glued to their social networks through their devices and are subject to extremely advanced systems and algorithms to keep them scrolling.
Mainstream media news also know that ‘Fear Sells’ with their deliberately crafted headlines attempting to tap into our fear. I know myself I will click on an article or buy a newspaper because the headlines invoke a fear response. I feel compelled to find out what’s happening in case it affects my world negatively. Every click and every headline generates some kind of revenue.
So our world is saturated with the power and influence of fear, in it’s varying degrees and effects. These things can live in our heads rent free and be terribly hard to shake. God is our deliverer in this. Only His truth and perspective can break us of illusion and captivity.
Stay strong in your church attendance, your prayers and bible reading. We are in a war and this is a complex and multidimensional war.
Mark is a Press Service International young writer from Adelaide.
His previous articles can be read here: http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-flippance.html