Facing the Fear of Insignificance

insignificance

Facing the Fear of Insignificance

I’m continuing my discussion on fear. I’ve been reading Max Lucado’s book, FEARLESS, and he says this about being insignificant

Do we matter? We fear we don’t. We fear nothingness, insignificance. We fear evaporation. We fear that in the last tabulation we make no contribution to the final sum. We fear coming and going and no one knowing.

That’s why it bothers us when a friend forgets to call or the teacher forgets our name or a colleague takes credit for something we’ve done or the airline loads us like cattle onto the next flight. They are affirming our deepest trepidation: no one cares, because we aren’t worth caring about.

Then he connects the fear of insignificance to some of our behavior:

For that reason we crave the attention of our spouse or the affirmation of our boss, drop names of important people in conversations, wear college rings on our fingers, and put silicone in our breasts, flashy hubcaps on our cars, grids on our teeth, and silk ties around our necks…

Fashion redeems us from the world of littleness and nothingness, and we are something else. Why? Because we spent half a paycheck on a pair of Italian jeans.  Max Lucado. FEARLESS

He’s right isn’t he?  I mean, think of the billions and billions of dollars that go to make us feel better about ourselves. With hair alone, just think about how much money goes to we cut it, color it, plug it, etc. 

We fear nothingness, insignificance. We fear evaporation. We fear that in the last tabulation we make no contribution to the final sum. Max Lucado

The fear of insignificance moves us to not only spend money on things we don’t need, it causes us to seek out winners with whom we can identify. We try to live vicariously through important people: entertainers and sports figures. If we can’t be important we simply attach ourselves to someone who is. 

Insignificance and the Fear Cycle

Our fear of insignificance often spins in a cycle. We feel insignificant so we do something desperate to feel good about ourselves. But that often backfires and makes us feel even more insignificant. For example, you might buy a new car to fit in with your friends but it gets repossessed because you can’t make the payments. Your friends find out about it and you feel smaller than before.

Max Lucado gives another example:

Consider the girl who is asked out on a date by a good-looking guy. So good-looking that she wonders what he sees in her. He’s out of her league. Once he gets to know her, he’ll drop her. Why, she may not be able to maintain his interest for one evening. Insecurity drives her to use the only tool she trusts, her body. She sleeps with him on the first date for fear that there won’t be a second. She ends up feeling like the disposable woman she didn’t want to become.  Max Lucado. FEARLESS

It’s sad when this happens. We end up being our own worst enemy.

So how do we face this fear of insignificance? One of Jesus’ followers explained how God’s love addresses our fear:

God is love…There is no fear in love because perfect love drives out fear… John 4:7,18 (The Bible)

Think about that; if you can experience perfect love, it can eliminate fear in your life. Is that too good to be true?  I’ll finish my thought on this in my next post. I hope you come back.

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  1. Pingback: Finding Your Significance in God's Love - F. Remy Diederich

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