Yesterday, I decided to confront my fear of extremely low temperatures. After all, I have an arctic parka, warm clothing, long underwear, warm boots, and wool socks.I have a case of hand warmers, heavy mittens and a windproof hat. Surely I would not drop dead after 15 minutes outdoors! My motivation: people further north live with sub-zero temperatures for months on end and they seem to do just fine; ranchers are out every day of the year feeding animals and tending to other chores and they too live to see another day. Furthermore, I claim to be adventurous–created in the same mold as early pioneers, who lived through these temperatures in sod houses. I worried too about the empty bird feeders. I noticed that people around me simply carried on, with almost no complaining. Wyoming folk are tough.
So. I piled on the layers, topped them off with the parka, hat and gloves.I gathered up the bird food and peanuts and headed out self-righteously to conquer the cold. Well about an hour later I was still working away outdoors setting up bird feeders and outdoor decorations while sweating under all the layers. I laughed, knowing that the weather forecasters “got me” again.
Confronting fear: we all have something(s) we fear. Most recently, mine was -40 degree wind chills. As a young girl I had fear of the dark.A few years ago, when my son was in Afghanistan, I had a cold fear that seeped into my bones. I have learned that fear does not have to be limiting or debilitating and that anyone can overcome fear.
I searched online for some quotes about fear to enliven this post and –no surprise–the first one to pop up was spoken by Mandela, who said,
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it.”
P.S. For a short commentary about Mandela from a faith perspective, please visit Reverendjane.wordpress.com