Fear is trusting in your own strength

Saturday, Jan 20, 2018 1002 words 4 mins 27 secs
An A Course in Miracles Blog  © 2018 Paul West

From lesson 48: "There is nothing to fear."

"The presence of fear is a sure sign that you are trusting in your own strength. The awareness that there is nothing to fear shows that somewhere in your mind, though not necessarily in a place you recognize as yet, you have remembered God, and let His strength take the place of your weakness. The instant you are willing to do this there is indeed nothing to fear."

You would think that trusting yourself and depending on you own strength more would make you somehow more confident. You’d think that if you can just be braver or more stoic or aggressive or assertive, maybe you can be unafraid. Or that if you come across as powerful, others will not intimidate you.

But there is a metaphysical basis for what happens here. When you trust your own *separate* strength, you are actually putting distance between yourself and strength. God is strength. Innocence is strength. Being separate is a belief in not being with God, and not being innocent. So as you move into separation and into "your own" separated self, you move away from the inherent nature of God’s creation, away from divine protection.

This makes you weaker, lacking, uncertain, filled with doubt, afraid of punishment for the sin of being separate, guilty for rejecting God’s help, and thoroughly limits what you can do. No-one can be separate from God and live.

Anyone who has struggled in life can probably tell you that when you are trying to do everything on your own, it sucks bad. Trying to overcome problems and deal with stress and manage everything and to be some kind of separate superhero, absent of God’s help, has its major limits. Trying to "go solo" is suicide.

The more you do it, the more you *seem* to become some kind of heroic savior, or successful achiever, or person of pride, or someone who has conquered the world. You come across on the surface as invincible. Nothing could be further from the truth. The more that you try to become the ego’s version of invincibility, the more you will become vulnerable, fragile, paranoid, empty, weak and sick. Being the hero of the dream is a trap. This is why heroes die.

True strength is only possible when you share with God. True resilience, invulnerability, power, confidence, certainty, immovability and permanence can only be found by allowing God to be the one who supplies your every need. Without God, you are without life. Without God, you are alone and you now have to defend yourself against an entire world you see as willing against you. Without God there is weakness and death. You cannot live without God.

So if you are afraid, it is a sure sign that you are depending too heavily on "your own" strength. It’s strange to think that you are feeling afraid because you are believing that you are powerful. Or that you are afraid because you think you are tough. Or you are afraid because you believe you can do anything and everything and don’t need any help. Or you are afraid because you see yourself as not needing any help. But this is precisely the backwards effects which the ego produces, pretending it is going to help you to be more distinctly separate, when all it does is hurt you more.

If you are afraid, it means you are not trusting God right now. It means you are listening to the ego and are fantasizing about how powerful you are. Trying to be powerful without God makes you powerless. To have power over others against their will strips you of your power and turns you into a vulnerable victim. If you are afraid, you need to let go of trying to do this all on your own. The more you try, the more you will fail. Seek and do not find.

It is not necessary to do everything on your own. Nor is it a matter of being a separate hero and having Holy Spirit back you up or having mighty companions to support you and surround you. I used to do that more, trying to retain my separate will and have Holy Spirit as a kind of servant to do my bidding and make my separate problems go away.

It’s more a matter of surrendering control of what you think is "your life", which you are trying to will independently of God, and give your life back to God. Make room for Him to help you. Let Him share it with you. Let Him solve the problems and carry the burden. Let Him look after others for you. Allow the freedom of not having to carry the whole world on your shoulders. It’s too big for anyone to do so in isolation.

Share your life with God and you gain the power of God. Paradoxically, allowing Him to live through you will allow you to live forever. Letting Him take over and direct you specifically, and being willing to listen and learn and do, to follow direction, will be far better for you than the outcomes you are trying to manipulate into being. Controlling your will and making it oppose God’s is not ever going to work in your favor.

God has a plan. God knows how to fix stuff. God knows what everyone needs, including you. Let Him lead the way and there will be no fear. Trust Him, and all your worries will vanish.

"To the extent to which you identify with the ego's self, you will identify with the ego's strategy, and so you will become afraid of the power of your mind."

Ask Jesus what to do! Learn to ask Him more than you ask yourself. So often I am considering what to do or not do, relying on my own self to know and be able ego decide. Jesus says, "ask!"

"Before you choose to do anything, ask me if your choice is in accord with mine. If you are sure that it is, there will be no fear."

Read more on: Faith and trustFear

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