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I am afraid of everything.

I am afraid of hurt. I am afraid of tragedy. I am afraid of rejection. I am afraid of being wrong, and I am very afraid I might be right.

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I don’t like heights, roller coasters, flying, spiders, boats, trains, or motorcycles.

I am afraid of being alone, but I am also afraid of large crowds.

I am afraid of tight spaces.

I am afraid of failure and I am afraid of success.

I grip fear in terrifying fashion.

And I have a Xanax prescription to prove the clinical trepidation that accompanies the long list of my fears.

In the vast sea of my terrors, there is an anchor, a beacon of light if you will, that I hold in higher reverence than my beloved prescription strength sedative. Although some would question the effectiveness of what I declare my strong tower, I urge you to read on.

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For it is not always that we are healed in an earthly fashion, but rather, that we are able to cope here on earth.

And I am not afraid to admit some days that is merely the goal, to cope. 

And the reality is my ability to cope proves me brave.

And I may not stop speeding trains or save anyone from a burning building, but my bravery is demonstrated through my ongoing attempts at letting go.

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And at the top of my list of fears is the fear of something, anything, bad happening to one of my children. I do not want them to hurt, and I do not want them to get hurt. In spite of this fear, I want them to have experiences and joy.  I want them to live full lives, and I pray they do so and give God the glory.

For them to do this, I must let go.

I am afraid of letting go.

They must get out from underneath my inadequate protection and go.

I must relinquish them to the strong tower that holds me up, and trust Him to go with them.

The strong tower, the hope of my heart, and my salvation, is Jesus Christ.

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And you might jeer, “how effective can He be if you cling so tightly to your Xanax?”

And I fearlessly protest:

At the top of a mountain, on a roller coaster or in an airplane at 30,000 feet, holding a jar, with no lid, full of spiders – and an empty bottle of Xanax – His grace is sufficient.

No speeding boat, train, or motorcycle can out race His providence. I will whimper fearfully and bravely, “faster.”

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And alone in a desert, with 20 people on an elevator, or on a stage – naked, I will cry out, “I am not afraid!”

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And a crowd might yell, “You’re an idiot!” or worse still, “Be our leader.”

And I will not quake or tremble at either notion for even in that valley that feels so much like death, He is my rod and staff.  I will fear no evil.

To cope is to grip to His grace.

And I bravely profess my faith in Him who carries me through.

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And although I may not be muscular or have any superhuman abilities, I will try.  I will give Him who dwells in me the credit.

One foot in front of the other.

One day after the next.

Bravely coping, clinging to the foot of the cross, and the God of all things brave.

 

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” Psalm 23:4

May your floors be sticky and your calling ordained.  Love, Jami

 

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