Fear Submits To Love

In this time where media (both mass and social) strive to exploit strong emotions such as fear and hatred in order to drive more traffic, I appreciate the words of Philip Berrigan who, along with his brother and also a priest Daniel Berrigan, exhibited leadership I respected back in the day.

I don’t gather that God wants us to pretend our fear doesn’t exist, to deny it, or eviscerate it. Fear is a reminder that we are creatures – fragile, vulnerable, totally dependent on God. But fear shouldn’t dominate or control or define us. Rather, it should submit to faith and love. Otherwise, fear can make us unbelieving, slavish, and inhuman. I have seen that struggle: containing my fear, rejecting its rule, recognizing that it saw only appearances, while faith and love saw substance, saw reality, saw God’s bailiwick, so to speak: “Take courage, it is I. Do not be afraid!”

Philip Berrigan

He does not talk of avoiding fear. Nor should we try to ignore it. Rather, like I wrote yesterday about where to focus our life, walk with God.

Easy to say. Difficult to live. I, in my security of suburban American life, wonder how I would face being in the Ukraine staring at Russian tanks. Could I live my faith?

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