What are You Afraid of?
It has been said that every generation "thinks" it lives in a time unlike all others. Perhaps we do all like to think that our own age is a special time which no one else has faced before. Certainly every generation has it own challenges, or as one of my mentors likes to say, "each generation has its own giants to fight." One of the giants that many people fight today is fear. Fear of the unknown. Fear of terrorists. Fear of disease. Fear of death. Fear of living. There are many people who spend their lives in fear. Unfortunately for many people the giants are winning.
There have been times when I have fought against fear. Fear can keep me from leaving the house for days at a time. In my case it is not the fear of people per se, but the fear of certain things that I know I need to accomplish. So rather than getting out there in the world and succeeding (or failing) I stay in the house. While I'm not actually hiding under the covers of the bed, I might as well be.
Sometimes I need to meditate on the ancient wisdom I say I believe, in order to get myself moving. It works if I don't wait too late to begin. If I do wait, then I just have to start all over the next day. That's probably why some cultures say the day really starts the evening before. That way when I get up the next day I'm ready to begin.
This is one of the texts that I meditate:
Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
This I declare about the Lord: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him. For he will rescue me from every trap and protect me from deadly disease. He will cover me with his feathers. He will shelter me with his wings. His faithful promises are my armor and protection. I will not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day. I will not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday. Though a thousand fall at my side, though ten thousand are dying around me, these evils will not touch me. I just open my eyes, and see how the wicked are rewarded. If I make the Lord my refuge, if I make the Most High my shelter, no evil will conquer me; no plague will come near my home. For he will order his angels to protect me wherever I go. They will hold me up with their hands so I won't even hurt my foot on a stone. I will trample upon lions and cobras; I will crush fierce lions and serpents under my feet!
The Lord says, "I will rescue those who love me. I will protect those who trust in my name. When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. I will reward them with a long life and give them my salvation."