Someone once told me, "When you know who you are, they can't touch you."
All of my life, fear and defensiveness have marked much of my interactions with others. Just before sitting down to write this, I had to interact with a person who I have historically had a very difficult time communicating with. After getting off the phone with her, I realized in disappointment that I had been afraid during the course of our conversation; afraid of her and of her personality.
A sense of failure welled up in me following this familiar and unpleasant exchange. I felt angry with myself that I had failed: that I been afraid of her, and that I had not done a Christ-like job of overcoming my feelings of fear.
As a child of God in Christ Jesus, I believe that the authentic realization that I am complete in Christ (Colossians 2:10), that "I have not been given a spirit of fear..." (2 Timothy 1:7) and that "...he himself is our [my] peace..." (Ephesians 2:14) releases me from bondage to fear in my human relationships even though I may sometimes feel afraid.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”