Greetings my English speaking friends and those wanting to learn, welcome to Just English!
It has been 10 years since September 11, 2001. The acts of terror in the United States on that day changed the world. The violence brought fear to many people. The rescuers displayed courage. Many heroes lost their lives trying to save others.
This past Monday, another much smaller act of terrorism occurred in Lima, Peru: there was a bomb threat at the Scotia Bank. It was a false alarm. Nobody was hurt. But for a moment, many of my emotions from ten years ago returned.
Terrorists seek to frighten people into change. Their acts are scary.
It is easy to become afraid. It is a normal human response. Fear protects us. In English, we say that fear leads to one of two actions: fight or flight. Some people fight what scares them. Other people run from what scares them. Sometimes we need to do both…fight and then run.
But what should we fear? Are you afraid of something? I fear heights.
Some people fear the dark. Other people fear flying. Others fear speaking in front of a crowd.
American President Franklin Deleno Roosevelt said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear it’self.”
The phrase is nice. But, I am not sure the topic is that simple. If we are talking about only the physical world, I agree with President Roosevelt. Yet, there is more than the physical world. There is also a spiritual world and we are part of it.
As Jesus said, “Don’t be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Instead, fear the one who can destroy both body and soul in hell.”
We need to fear God because he rules over both the physical and spiritual world. Fear Him, yes. But does that mean we are to be scared of him? No. To fear God is to know that he is the most powerful being. If we are under His care, we can be at peace because he has all power.
If we are with Him, we can have courage. As Joshua said in the Bible, “Be strong and courageous! Don’t tremble or be terrified, because the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Lt. John Putnam Jr. fought in World War II and said, “Courage is not the lack of fear but the ability to face it.”
With God, we can face fear.
As Dorothy Bernard said, “Courage is fear that has said it’s prayers.”
Recently, my father left on a missionary journey to a dangerous country. I told him to stay safe. He responded with the same words as many brave missionaries before him, “Son, safety is not the absence of danger but the presence of God.”
In the Bible, King David was a brave man. He sang,
The Lord is my light and my salvation.
Who is there to fear?
The Lord is my life’s fortress.
Who is there to be afraid of?
Do you live in fear? Have courage!
Live in the presence of God. As God blessed his people in the past,
The Lord will bless you and watch over you.
The Lord will smile on you and be kind to you.
The Lord will look on you with favor and give you peace. (Dueteronomy 23:24-26)
I’m Leon Smith.