I heard this morning that someone has counted 365 instances in the King James Bible the phrase “Be Not Afraid.” This makes it the most common teaching in the entire scriptures. Even if the count is off a little, the idea that we are advised to not be afraid so frequently in one of the most published books on the planet has to indicate something we are well advised to embody even if the Bible is not our choice of reading material.
Fear holds us in place. Fear prevents us from growing. Fear results in distrust, anger and discrimination and fear keeps us from achieving the things we wish to achieve. Fear does not have to have any rationale to exist, and fear is something we pass along to those around us without a word.
Fear is an insidious energy and stern taskmaster. When we live in fear we are susceptible to the most absurd of claims, we do things without knowing exactly why, and often have to go back to apologize about later.
When advertisers want us to purchase a product; be that product a new deodorant or a candidate for President, the one motivating factor which can always be counted upon is fear. And it doesn’t even matter if what is being said makes any sense at all, if the advertisers can push our fear button we will not even question the suggestion that if we buy this product or campaign promise we will then find ourselves living the life we have always wanted. It is only when fear is seen for what it is; smoke and mirrors without substance, can we step back and make rational decisions for ourselves.
Our responsibility to ourselves is clear; when we have a choice to make we ask our heart of hearts; am I making this choice because I am afraid of what might happen, or because I believe it is right.