Thank you for your responses to my question about fear. Here are the weapons we listed.
- Music – creating, playing, or singing it
- Courage and trust
- Receiving the perfect love of God
- Going on, even afraid
- Confessing it to someone/ Admitting it
- Naming the desire beneath the fear
- Taking the feelings to Jesus
- Recalling visual images of faith and progress
After writing that last post In the Shadows, but before sharing it with you, I stumbled on a passage on fear in Life of Pi, a book I am currently reading by Yann Martel. It’s a fascinating novel about being adrift at sea in a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger for far too many days. Lots of gross stuff. But it has this great mini-chapter with observations on fear. Listen.
“I must say a word about fear. It is life’s only true opponent. Only fear can defeat life. It is a clever, treacherous adversary, how well I know. It has no decency, respects no law or convention, shows no mercy. It goes for your weakest spot, which it finds with unerring ease. It begins in your mind, always…
…Reason comes to do battle for you. You are reassured. Reason is fully equipped with the latest weapons technology. But, to your amazement, despite superior tactics and a number of undeniable victories, reason is laid low. You feel yourself weakening, wavering. Your anxiety becomes dread.
Fear next turns fully to your body, which is already aware that something terribly wrong is going on. Already your lungs have flown away like a bird and your guts have slithered away like a snake… And so with the rest of your body. Every part of you, in the manner most suited to it, falls apart. Only your eyes work well. They always pay proper attention to fear.
…The matter is difficult to put into words. For fear, real fear, such as shakes you to your foundation, such as you feel when you are brought face to face with your mortal end, nestles in your memory like a gangrene: it seeks to rot everything, even the words with which to speak of it. So you must fight hard to express it. You must fight hard to shine the light of words upon it. Because if you don’t, if your fear becomes a wordless darkness that you avoid, perhaps even manage to forget, you open yourself to further attacks of fear because you never truly fought the opponent who defeated you.”-Yann Martel, Life of Pi
It gave me courage to post the words 🙂 if not to write them.
Fear is a liar. We are going to make it, and all will be well. Promise.
Fighting alongside you.
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