Daily Meditation 06 11 10
The wise person in the storm prays God, not for safety from danger, but for deliverance from fear. It is the storm within which endangers us, not the storm without.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
I sometimes wish that Emerson had been my grandfather or uncle or something like that. I’m sure that if I had had the chance to hear his wisdom over and over again while growing up, some of it would have rubbed off on me and I would have avoided many of the problems I’ve gone through.
Many of those problems have been caused by fear, for I grew up fearful of many things. The fear is gone, for the most part, but I certainly can vouch for Emerson’s words here: the storm within endangers us. I can’t count the number of hours and days that I’ve spent with some fear in the front of my mind, overwhelming all of the other things that I’ve been trying to do. I can’t count how many of my actions have been motivated by a fear of what would happen if I committed another action, rather than by a desire to do what I felt should be done.
If we were to be given safety always, we would never find ourselves in positions in which we have to test ourselves, in which we would have to learn and grow. Danger in whatever form causes us to make decisions and re-evaluate our priorities and beliefs. But if our reaction to danger always is fear, we don’t give ourselves the chance to deal with that danger in a productive way. Instead, we retreat from confronting it, and we end up losing the chance to take something from it.
If we can calm the storm within ourselves by finding peace and trusting life and God, danger of whatever sort no longer holds the power that it once did. Instead of causing us to feel terror, it will cause us to examine the ways that we will confront it and hopefully overcome it.
Faith given back to us after a night of doubt is a stronger thing, and far more valuable to us than faith that has never been tested.
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