Thursday, December 3, 2015

The Facts About Fear, Let’s Get This Clear

“Scared is what you’re feeling. Brave is what you’re doing.”
— Emma Donoghue
COURAGE always has a mystique about it until we break open the mystery. The same can be said for fear. Fear muddies our way, yet by courage we gain clarity of being.
Courage and fear are mysteries until we actually do engage with them. Have you noticed that? Fear evaporates like mist in the heat of summer when we put a brave face on. Our brave face proved to us how vulnerable our fear is. Fear just got conned!
But we’ll need to deal with the real issues or that untameable fear, given time, will condensate once more as grime on the stained-glass window of our consciousness.
This article discusses irrational fear, for rational fear is an adjunct to wisdom and the powers of God; the beginning of understanding and life.
Another way to think of this: as we remove the log of fear (the irrational kind) from our mind’s eye, we’re in a better position to see well enough the speck of plainly visible truth in God’s eye of life, and that creates a productive rational fear; again, the beginning of understanding and life.
The rest of this article discusses ‘fear’ as the irrational, unhelpful kind.
Fear Cannot Stand in the Presence of Clarity
Fear mumbles, bumbles and stumbles and all it needs for stability is clarity — a safe sense of self. When at last we have all our faculties, when we can move forward without the dread of knocking into things, pushing them over and damaging them, we have no need of unnecessary weakness. And fear is unnecessary. Don’t we have enough weakness to contend with?
The best of life is learning to stand, straight up, even in the presence of fear. And the way to be able to stand is to seek clarity — to seek focus — to become single-minded for truth (which is often its own mumbling, bumbling, stumbling journey in the discernment of it — a courage that accepts failure is part of the course!).
Where clarity’s an acquisition — the fullness of confidence in a safe sense of self — fear cannot stand. This is why calmness and stillness are the best bases for courage. This is why the psalmist says, “Do not fret; it only causes evil.” (Psalm 37:8) Only when we are sensible, logical, rational, realistic and responsible are we reliable; and that because we have subjugated our fear.
And a key to being sensible, logical, rational, realistic, responsible and reliable is rest. Could it be that fear is also indwelled in hurry?
***
Courage is just this:
“Scared is what you’re feeling. Brave is what you’re doing.”
— Emma Donoghue
When we feel scared, yet we act brave, courage is what we’re showing. And courage is the only fix for fear. If we’re not fearful there’s no need of courage. If we’re not brave we don’t show courage.
So courage is bravery in the presence of fear.
See how important fear is in the presentation of virtue? Virtue is none other than the opportunity to do something better in an often horrid situation.
So, be brave in your fear, because by courage you’ll pave your way to freedom!
© 2015 Steve Wickham.

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