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I believe that we all want to live without fear. Unfortunately, I don’t have an answer on how to do that. We all have something that’s holding us back from accomplishing our dreams and goals. Something weighing us down and holding us back. I’m not my full, authentic self 100% of the time. Because of fear.

Fear boxes us in. Tells us we can’t. We won’t. We’re not good enough, not worth enough, not whatever enough. That’s fear’s job. It does it well.

Because we let it.

What if we stood in power, awash in God’s grace? What if we claimed our place at the foot of the cross on our knees? God will stand by us. He may not lessen our suffering or decrease our turmoil–He might–but that doesn’t diminish His presence in our lives.

He wants to give you gifts (Galatians 5:22-23). But do you accept them? Not only does He want to nourish a garden within you, he wants to grow friendships with you. He places people in your lives, some to help you and some for you to help. Perhaps others are just there to make you learn and grow. I don’t honestly know, I can’t speak to every situation. Yet, those pale in comparison to the friendship He has in mind for you with Himself.

The thing is, God wants me to step out in faith and trust Him. He wants me to lean on Him at all times and in all moments. Not just when I feel strong or when I feel weak, but to constantly talk to Him. To tell Him about my day, how things are going at work, which lady has my heart this week, what I’m doing on my day off, where I’m spending my vacation, etc. No detail is too minor, no thing too major, nothing too disturbing or ordinary. He won’t leave you or abandon you (Isaiah 49:15).

Have you had a friend like that? Someone who has your back through thick and thin? Who stands by you. Who laughs with you, cries with you, fights with you and for you, who always listens without judgement, who’s willing to drop everything and be there for you?

Maybe we can be that friend to someone. Maybe you can’t. I don’t know your unique situation. All I know is that Jesus Christ came down from Heaven to die on the cross for you and there’s no greater love than that (John 15:13).

Unfortunately, fear keeps telling me that I’m not worth such friendship, such love. This time, let’s not let fear win.

It’s not easy. I’m not trying to make light of that very real reality. It’s a battle every day. Sometimes, it’s a struggle every moment. But you can overcome. I believe in you. You are valuable. You are worth it. You are good enough. You don’t need to measure up to anyone else, just be true to you. Be your authentic self. If someone doesn’t like you, that’s on them. Keep your eyes fixed above. Seek first the kingdom of God (Matt 6:33). Find your identity in your Savior. God created you for a purpose.

God calls each of us to be like Peter. Even as the storm raged and the rest of the disciples huddled in the boat, Peter stepped out in faith and stood on the water (Matt 14:22-33). However, I’m not always that bold. Often, I find myself huddled at the bottom of the boat. Other times, I’m too focused on the wind and the waves, my eyes aren’t fixed on Jesus and I plummet. But, even in those moments, God reaches out and saves me. I need only ask. Jesus told His disciples, “Courage. I am. I forbid you to be afraid.”

He tells us the same thing. Listen and respond.