The Fear Factor

I am deathly afraid of three primary things…one is a rational fear…the others are quite irrational. That is to say, I greatly fear drowning, basements, and clowns. Yes. You heard me correctly…I fear drowning, basements, and clowns. Let me explain…

My fear of drowning is actually quite rational because I cannot swim. In other words, if you were to throw me into the middle of a lake and leave me…I would drown…I would die. This is simply a fact because I cannot swim. Thus, I refuse to jump into the deep end of the pool or go scuba diving in the great Atlantic Ocean because of my fear of drowning. You see, my fear of drowning keeps me firmly planted on good, solid ground and prevents me from enjoying certain pleasures in life (i.e. scuba diving, etc.) because of my inability to swim.

Now my fear of basements is quite irrational. It really makes no sense at all, but there is something about the dark, creepy, unfurnished, cold atmosphere of basements that sends chills down my spine. No joke…I literally have to do some major positive self-talk before I head down the basement to check on a strange noise or grab a random box down there. I fear basements because of what my imagination tells me about them (i.e. the biggest cockroach/spider/snake is located down there). Yes, age and experience has helped curb my fear of basements, but even as a fully-grown adult male, with an Army background, I fear basements. My fear of basements prevents me from doing certain things…like setting up an office space down there because of my irrational fear of what the basement holds…

My fear of clowns is also irrational. It’s silly really, but there is something about the facade…the big red nose…and that happy, fake, “plastic” smile that makes me incredibly nervous. Bottom line, if I saw a clown in the middle of the night, just walking down the street, either the cops are being called or someone is going to die. Clowns freak me out! In fact, my irrational fear of clowns just recently prevented me from inviting such creatures to my daughter’s 2 year birthday bash…in fact, if one would have shown up…it probably would have died.

Now here’s where it gets interesting…let’s say you really wanted to freak me out and send me into a panic attack…all you would have to do is tie me up, put me in the basement, and then introduce to me a clown down there with a hose! I would probably just pass out and die…this is my worst nightmare!

But seriously…the point is this…my fear of these things (rational or irrational) prevents me from doing certain things. It causes me to stay far away from certain activities, places, and people. But we all have fears…some rational…others irrational. Some fears are silly and childlike…others are more sinister and paralyzing. So what is it that you fear? Is it failure? The unknown? A certain person? A certain outcome? How has your fear prevented you from doing certain activities…going certain places…visiting certain people? How has your fear prevented you from serving? Check your fear factor and realize that the only way to combat your fear factor is with your faith factor! The Bible declares in Psalm 56:3-4, “Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You. In God (I will praise His word), in God I have put my trust; I will not fear. What can flesh [or clowns] do to me?”

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