Feature by Corporal Nathan Chan of the 10th Kuala Lumpur Company
Published November 23rd, 2014
Fear, like any other feeling, is a strange thing. Fear is something hard to control, yet easy to provoke. Fear is universal, as there is no one on this earth that has never feared. Yet it is something barely understood.
Boot camp 2011, my first ever camp. The first thing I heard? An officer screaming, shouting all sorts of threats at us. For the next 3 days, I lived in almost constant fear of upsetting the officers. Such was the beginning of a fear that lived on in me for a long time, especially in camps.
Acrophobia - the fear of heights. Claustrophobia - the fear of small spaces. Nyctophobia - the fear of the dark. Ophidiophobia - the fear of snakes. Arachnophobia - the fear of spiders. Hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia - ironically, the fear of long words. These fears make make it seem unnecessary, and sometimes even bad.
Many people have tried to counter fear. The American president Roosevelt once addressed that nation with a speech which began with a plea to hold on. “Let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” A very different character attempts to address this topic too, though in a very different way. “Fear is the path to the Dark Side,” says Yoda to young Anakin. “Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose.” Both these characters saw fear as something to be afraid of. One plead with a nation to see the ways fear could bring us to a halt. The other attempted to deal with fear by removing everything which could cause it.
Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe. (Proverbs 29:25 NIV)
Fear can be dangerous, as it can cause so much anxiety that we do not dare to live at all. Yet while fear can paralyze, so can fearlessness. As Yoda observed, the only way to be without fear is to disassociate oneself with everything that can possibly cause it. Neither fear nor fearlessness will allow us to live.
Fear is often born out of love. When a parent loves a child, he or she becomes fearful for the child's safety. Very often, our fear stems from the possibility of losing something or someone we value. In the same way, we fear uncertainty simply because of the risk that could threaten the things we love the most.
The only way to live in the presence of fear is to have hope as well. In our lives, we often fear what we cannot see. Yet hope gives us an anchor which we can hold on. Yes, the world is falling apart. Yes, there are many people who have died and moved on. Yet why should we be afraid if we know God is in control? What reason is there to fear if death is not the end? It may be our human nature to fear, but by God's power, we can have hope.
Page Created: 23rd November 2014
Last Updated: 23rd November 2014