Thursday, January 23, 2014

Fear or Faith

Faith is often relegated to a religious role.  For those folks that don't feel comfortable in a religious setting this can make faith seem as realistic as fairies and leprechauns.  My favorite definition of faith is, "Faith is the evidence of things UNSEEN."  Let's expand the idea of faith in this post.

To me faith "Evidence of the unseen," refers to a belief that each day the sun will come up, to brighten the world, and each night the sun will go down and let us rest and refresh ourselves.  We have faith that winter will follow autumn, and spring will follow winter.  We have faith that in the spring plants will be reborn.  We have faith in love...the richness of romantic, or family love that brightens our lives.

As a child I was very ill.  I was not expected to live past the age of 2 years.  I was born with very little immune system, and allergic to pretty much EVERYTHING.  That isolated, protected environment spun off a host of fears.  I learned much too much at an early age about different types of fears, fear of heights, darkness, poverty, illness, you name it and I was afraid of it!

For years my fears were always close to the surface creating in my core being a definite sense of anxiety.  When fear fills your life it is pretty difficult to feel any type of peace.

It took decades but I have come to understand that fear is usually triggered by a lack of faith.  This could be an intense discussion about religious faith, faith in God, and knowledge of eternity...etc. etc.  I want to keep this post simple.

I believe that at the base of each and every fear there is ONE idea, a common thread that makes all fear unite.  We fear when we can not and do not know the outcome in a situation.  So if you are afraid of heights, the fear comes from the idea that we could fall, and we do not know what the outcome would be, or we DO know what the outcome would be and it would NOT be a good outcome!  So all fear comes from a common root.

Although most fears are irrational, we do NOT have to spend the entirety of lives being ruled by them.  There is ALWAYS a way to conquer fear.  That way may differ from person to person.  For me, the way is meditation, or prayer, or study.  Sometimes I am not even aware that my feelings of anxiety are coming from my sub-conscious...from some memory.  I have to ponder, study, meditate before I am able to discover what is causing my sense of discomfort with life.  Yet the encouraging reality is that after I do those activities I am able to feel peace again.

Today...will you let fear fill your life, or will you be able to conquer your fear with faith?  Remember there is ALWAYS a choice.  It may be very difficult, and it may involve humbling yourself to get professional help...but it IS possible!

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