Fear Itself

President Franklin D Roosevelt once said, “…the only thing we have to fear is fear itself...”  This saying should be something we all think of during this time.  Many people have allowed themselves to be carried away by fear and their reactions can easily grow out of control. We have seen what happens when terror grips whole groups of people and rumors become reality in their minds.  We must be willing to stand during these times and not get carried away by alarm or the cynicism that can happen when we observe unchecked panic.

The reality of fear looks like a two sided coin.  There is a fear that can protects us and a fear that can destroy us.  Many people walk in caution and protect themselves and their family because of a healthy fear.  Other people allow fear to rob them of relationships and joy in their life.  We must look at fear and see the healthy and the unhealthy side of it.

Healthy Fear

  • Healthy fear is not being scared as much as it is an understanding of the negative consequences of actions.  Many people who are not criminals still get nervous and check their speed whenever they see a police car.  They don’t do it because they are guilty of a crime, but because they understand that if they are accidentally speeding they could get a ticket.

  • As children, we often have a healthy fear of our parents.  They set rules for us and they are mainly there for our own protection.  However as children, we don’t understand everything so the fear of our parents keeps us from breaking the rules.  That is healthy because the fear protects us from our own ignorance.  Healthy fear seeks to protect.

Unhealthy Fear

  • Unhealthy fear mainly deals in the unknown.  We allow our mind to imagine circumstances that “could” happen and we let those imaginations control us.  These imaginations could have a basis in reality or a basis in past pain in our life, but we are allowing the unknown of the future to control us now. We must look objectively at fears to assess whether they are based in reality or based in imagination.  Being safe is smart, being fearful causes loss.

  • When we let fears control us, we give up control of our own lives to an imagination that isn’t even real.  Many men are held captive by their own imagination because of unhealthy fears.  These fearful imaginations can control a family and often get passed down to our children.

In these uncertain times, we must make sure that we look at things objectively and with reason.  We do want to be safe and we want to protect ourselves and our family, however we should not be afraid to ask the questions to see if our fear is healthy or unhealthy.

What are some fears you have seen rob other men of their own adventure?

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