Fear is one of our basic emotions.  It is in us at birth.  It hangs in there all of our time on this earth in one way or another.


Fear is debilitating, manifesting itself in many ways.  It is that debilitation that I wish to cover here.


We see fear everywhere in our world.  A lady fears seeing guns in Starbucks.  Some fear illegal immigrants and how they will affect society.  People on both sides of the abortion issue fear the other side.  We are to fear the failure of the jury system in Florida.  Recently on the news, we learned that we need to be fearful of petting zoos, because 2 people out of 40,000 visitors got sick with ecoli at one of them.  People fear fracking, Obamacare, gays,  Rush Limbaugh, how their neighbor acts, bad drivers, kids running out in front of us, church, meat, vegetables, steroids, the NSA, the press, getting a head injury – add your own as you see fit; I think you see what I mean..


Fear can freeze us in place.  It’s the ‘deer in the headlights’ thing, where you don’t know what to do so you just throw up a self-paralysis.  You remove yourself from any action at all, neither evading the source of the fear nor attacking that source to remove it.


Fear may also trigger a ‘flee’ response.  Let’s say something scares the bejeebers out of us.  In a reflexive, involuntary and thoughtless action, off we go, heedless of direction or any intent of which way to go – and so often, that fleeing takes us right into a brick wall, over a cliff, or even worse, finding us face to face with a deeper fear than the first.


Then there’s ‘fight’ as a product of fear.  To attack the attacker, to attack the source of the fear – and usually without a plan.  Such an attack is visceral, coming out of rage and impulse.


Look at the last three paragraphs.  Whether we freeze or flee, there is something happening that wraps up and almost defines the trouble with being fearful…. When we freeze, we don’t know what to do.  When we flee, there is involuntary thoughtlessness.  The ‘fight’ comes without a plan.  When one considers such things, it is easy to say this….


Fear makes us quit thinking.


And that has got to stop.


Our animalistic nature – to flee, to freeze, to fight, as potent as they may seem, are at best short-term solutions.  Chances are, too, that the solution is tenable at best.


I believe we have been provided with the brain power to overcome such tendencies.  We have been wired, I believe, to solve problems of great size.  We have solved several great fears and mysteries over the years.  We have found cures for diseases.  We have discovered how to fly.  We have inventions that do astounding things.  We have designed systems that allow us to communicate instantly across the face of our planet.


So the next time you are fearful, allow yourself to use the brain God gave us … (even if you don’t believe it’s God, I still bet you believe our brain is a downright darn good thing when used properly anyway)


We are too good a being than to let fear drive us.  We have more going for us than such animalistic tendencies that I list.


I am by no means saying things are all hunky-dory and pretty.  There are still factors to be addressed, so go ahead…. Be concerned, be wary, be alert.  Participate with all your might to address these fears.  Such qualities as these imply thoughtful awareness and cognizant minds.  It implies that maybe the situation isn’t as bad as it may seem, so with some self-control and compassion, maybe the fear out there isn’t so awful after all.