Be Not Afraid

I was watching Fox News last week – a habit I am indulging less and less – and it got under my skin in about ten minutes with the constant repetition of “Americans are afraid” or “Americans are frightened” coming from commentators criticizing the President’s Oval Office speech in the wake of the San Bernardino murders, and his intent to import 10,000 Syrian refugees.  I frankly don’t know anyone that is frightened, although I know some people who are angry.  I personally struggle with the angry response, even now more especially so as we began the Jubilee Year of Mercy December 8th.  Undoubtedly there are Americans who are afraid: I had the good fortune to grow up in a community in Ohio where we didn’t lock our doors at night, and to live now in a community in Georgia that is safe and prosperous.  So maybe my sanguinity in my personal security is the product of the good fortune of my life experiences.  I do know that 50,000+ of us a year get in our cars every day without fear across this country and don’t come home, getting crushed by semis and the like.  For all the knob heads texting, yapping on cell phones, and freshening their make-up while going 75 mph, maybe a little fear would be a good thing.

“Be not afraid.”  My understanding is it is a phrase repeated close to 300 times in the Bible, often to people wondering if the Assyrians were coming or the Romans were going to take one’s goat as a tax penalty.  It was perhaps Saint Pope John Paul II’s catchphrase, coming from a man who survived the Nazis, the Commies, and absorbing several bullets at close range from a professional assassin.  I don’t have the theological chops to go into a lengthy dissertation on why we should not be afraid.  I am not afraid of the jihadis, probably because it is unlikely they will capture Suwanee, Georgia.  I am afraid for my beloved wife, who is going through a breast cancer diagnosis, and quail at the thought of having to continue living without her.  Yes, I would go out in the rain forgetting to put on my pants if it wasn’t for her.  And she’s my bestest friend.  But ultimately I am not afraid because I know Jesus Christ is victorious, and He loves me and Mary and all our children, friends – and everybody actually.  If ISIS did take Suwanee, and I’m on my knees in an orange jumpsuit on a beach at Lake Lanier with Jihadi Jerry holding a butcher knife to my throat, yes I would be afraid – because being beheaded by hand seems like it would really hurt.  But I would be exultant knowing I would be greeted by the Master (Tom, “head” on over here – Ha! Ha! little Heavenly humor there) and be part of the multitude no one can count, my robes washed white in the blood of the Lamb.

Greet every day with a prayer of gratitude, and ask God for fortitude.  God bless!

Explore posts in the same categories: Catholicism, Faith

One Comment on “Be Not Afraid”

  1. Stan Sikorski Says:

    You have been blessed with “witsdom”. You don’t have to be afraid because I too are with you.

    Tell Mary that we love her.

    Stan & Karen

    P.S. Call me if for some reason I haven’t reached you first okay?

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