by Aubry Rose
Welcome to another musing.
I have these musing moments quite often, of which I like to refer to as a “FAITH EPIPHANY MOMENT.”
I literally live for these moments. They are the single-most exciting point in my week. I attribute them to God sending down the holy spirit to sprinkle wisdom dust (sparkly, of course) on top of my head. Things that are so simple & logical become like new in my noggin. It typically leads to a happy dance followed by an immediate phone call to my sister because I can’t keep it to myself.
[Sidenote: this reminds me of my favorite phrase in the new mass which trumps all others: “Make holy these gifts, we pray, by sending down your Spirit upon them like the dewfall.” I mean, come on — God is giving us the most amazing visual here. When the priest says those words, I cannot help but smile like a buffoon. I picture all the angels & saints slowly settling down around the altar, while the holy spirit takes the offerings of bread & wine and gently transforms them into Jesus’ flesh & blood in front of our eyes, like the renewal of life through dew drops on a tulip. IT GETS ME EVERY TIME.] Read more on a blog I found here.
So, thanks to a few conversations I have had over the past couple days, as well as some perfectly-timed readings of the scripture at mass & an amazing priest’s homily, the idea of FEAR has sparked a faith epiphany moment.
Fear is a word we hear often. How many times a day do you say or hear, “I’m scared..” or “I’m dreading this..” or even “Help?” Of course, we shouldn’t be embarrassed or demoralized by this. We are human beings after all, with a weakness and propensity towards fear of the unknown. (This could lead me on another tangent, of which I won’t go.. but peoples, sometimes there really is nothing more beautiful than the unknown!)
The readings at mass yesterday spoke so perfectly to this idea of fear, equipping us with the knowledge to, yes, acknowledge our fears whenever they grip us, but then react in a way that overcomes them.
Unsurprisingly, the answer is found in God.
In the first reading (John 4:11-18), Saint John reminds us that God is love, and that “whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him.” He then goes on to write, “There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear because fear has to do with punishment, and so one who fears is not yet perfect in love.”
Using the simple algebraic formula we learned in middle school that I thought would absolutely never come in handy again, A=C and B=C then A=C, we are given the solution for fear. Ahem:
God = love
Love = the cure for fear
God = the cure for fear. Boom.
If we replace the word ‘God’ for ‘love’ in Saint John’s writings, we then find that “there is no fear in God… and so one who fears is not yet perfect in God.” THE REASON WE FEAR IS BECAUSE WE ARE WEAK IN OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD. So, rather than remain immobilized in fear, acknowledge that fear as a clear sign pointing toward a need to strengthen your relationship with your Heavenly Father. Then do something ’bout it!
So, my friends, I’m giving you both a challenge and a solution.
Challenge: Every time you feel scared, or weak, or simply a tiny little human dot all alone on the overwhelmingly ginormous planet, give it up to God & let Him enter into your heart through a simple prayer, so that He can remove that false fear & replace it with true love.
Solution: Let Him show you what true love is.
You know, the kind of love that comforts you when you finally spot a familiar face in a strange crowd. The kind of love that comforts you through your family in your own home. The kind of love that covers you in a warm, fuzzy blanket & fills you with warm fuzzies. Because, as Jesus gently reminds us in the gospel (Mark 6:45-52), we have no need to be afraid when we recognize that He is always standing right by us. Which, of course, is where we will always find Him.