Yesterday I was fortunate enough to be able to attend a day of workshops. One of the workshops title was, Moving from Fear to Faith. During the introduction by the work shop leader and in subsequent discussion some great points were shared. Several of the ones that stood out to me were: Faith is a decision and You can not be in fear and faith at the same time. As I thought about these points, I had several thoughts came to mind: Faith is the absence of fear and fear is the absence of faith.
Yesterday, while speaking with my mentor we discussed the topic of moving from fear to faith. He shared several thoughts that helped me. I would like to share those thoughts with you. Fear is not the absence of faith. Instead, in spite of being fearful at times I can ask God to give me the courage and strength to do “it” anyway. By asking God to give me the strength and courage — in spite of the fear — I exercise faith. So faith is “inspired” by fear. When fear and anxiety crop up in any given situation, I can examine what is creating the unrest and then ask God to help me. By doing so I exercise faith in the midst of my fear.
As I examine the fear — that is creating my unrest — I am able to benefit from the fear. Instead of chiding myself for not having enough faith, I am able to use my fear as a tool to examine what is creating my unrest. By examining what is creating my unrest, I am able to exercise faith by asking for help from a loving God and by doing things differently through making different choices. So faith is not the absence of fear and fear is not the absence of faith. Instead, fear is an opportunity in which I can exercise faith. As a way in which I no longer have to stay stuck in fear.
I am grateful for the realization that faith is not the absence of fear, but rather a catalyst that leads me to ask for help. By asking for help from a loving God, I exercise faith. Consequently, I do not have to judge myself for a lack of faith or for having fear. Instead, I can celebrate having faith when I experience anxiety and fear. I can learn from the experience and find rest. I can be empowered by my anxiety and fear, instead of beating up on myself for having anxiety and fear. By asking God to help me, I am able to use my fear and anxiety to empower my life, instead of permitting fear and anxiety to paralyze my life.
Below are several quotes that have / do encourage and inspire me.
“We can’t have full knowledge all at once. We must start believing; then afterwards we may be led on to master the evidence for ourselves.” Thomas Acquinas
“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.” Sir John Lubbock
“A pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” Sir Winston Churchill
“Learn to listen. Opportunity could be knocking at your door very softly.” Frank Tyger
“All life is an experiment. The more experiment you make the better.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Do not fear to be eccentric in opinion, for every opinion now accepted was once eccentric.”Bernard Russell
“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done with hope or confidence.” Helen Keller
“The secret of success is learning how to use pain and pleasure, instead of having pain and pleasure use you. If you don;t, life controls you.” Anthony Robbins
“Live your beliefs and you can turn your world around.” Henry David Thoreau
“You don’t get to choose how you’re going to die or when. You CAN decide how you are going to live.” Joan Baez
“Every man dies, not every man really lives.” William Wallace from “Braveheart”
“People of mediocre ability sometimes achieve outstanding success, because they don’t know when to quit. Most men succeed because they are determined to.” George Herbert Allen
“Dreams do not vanish, as long as people do not abandon them, Phantom F. Harlock
“Patience and perseverance have a magical affect before, which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish.” John Quincy Adams
“There is nothing that fear and hope does not permit men to do.” Marquis De Vauvenargues
“The best way to change your belief system is to change the truth about you. What you actually “do” is more important than what you say you will do.” Steve Chandler
“If you’re able to be yourself, then you have no competition! All you have to do is to get closer and closer to that essence.” Barbara Cook
“I am a slow walker, but I never walk backwards.” Abraham Lincoln
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