So often I allow fear to control my life.
I’ve not done things because I was afraid.
Afraid of the consequences.
Afraid of the risks.
Fear has saved all of us from potentially serious problems.
We watch our speed because we are afraid of getting a ticket.
We exercise because we are apprehensive about our family history of heart disease.
We avoid walking down dark streets in cities at night because we are afraid we might be mugged.
But sometimes fear becomes much more than protective.
Sometimes we allow fear to control our lives.
Sometimes fear stops protecting and starts destroying.
Fear has become an instrument of control.
Terrorists count on fear to manipulate us.
Through advertising and marketing, fear is used to convince us we need more stuff to avoid being rejected or frowned upon.
But fear also controls us in more subtle ways.
A.C. Grayling states: “If there is anything worth fearing in the world, it is living in such a way that one gives oneself cause for regret in the end.”
Too many of us live lives that are a fraction of what they could be.
Instead of trying to attain our dreams we hold ourselves back from fear of failure.
Instead of grabbing opportunities, we fear the changes these opportunities may bring, or we fear that we may not be up to the task.
We fear our ability to deliver, so we don’t try.
We fear we may fail, so we say no.
We fear we may get hurt, so we remove ourselves from the very situations that could liberate us.
We’re scared of leaving our comfort zones…
…and we’re scared of staying in them.
Some say that our ultimate fear is that of dying….
but maybe what we fear most is living.
The power of choice is our greatest possession in life.
Why waste that by always choosing the easy or least frightening option?
Or worse, by not choosing at all, merely drifting along, subject to the prevailing winds and swirling current.
Each of us has so much unrealized potential, but we fear the consequences of its deployment.
Marianne Williamson wrote:
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God…
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.”
So, go out. Conquer your fears our your fears will conquer you. Allow yourself to live to the fullest, trusting in the all-sufficient power of God.
It’s hard-this conquering of debilitating fear-but oh, so worth it.