The only thing we have to fear… by Travis Evans
November 5, 2008, 11:00 am
Filed under: Culture


By: Travis Evans

…is fear itself. So goes the famous quote from Franklin D. Roosevelt. As men, we are supposed to be courageous. Our culture even implies it. Man = courageous. Yet, courage is a curious thing. The term itself comes from the Latin word for heart (cor). People have associated 1,043 different movies with the word courage. Some of them I think we can agree on that they are about courage: Band of Brothers, Braveheart, Men of Honor, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Amazing Grace. Some people define courage as not being afraid, or having strong resolve, or battling something bigger than yourself.

However, surely courage is more than fighting some kind of struggle or battle (either within or without) or not being afraid of something. I think the important difference from the culture’s perspective (where our culture gets it wrong) is the source of our courage, the source of hope that helps us stand firm in times of fear. For example, some people turn on all of the lights in their home when they are afraid. They trust the light to keep them safe.

Our culture often-times implies that the source is ultimately inside ourselves. How, then, can the one that is afraid be the source of courage? No, courage must come from outside ourselves. Having courage to act must come from the Lord. When the Bible commands men to be strong and have courage, it bases those commands on who God is and that He will be with us (Deuteronomy 3:16). Then, we can stand firm, even when we are afraid. Men, not having fear is not the point of courage. Courage acts and does what is right and necessary even when we are afraid because we trust God.

For your amusement, I give you some fake phobias:

Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia- Fear of long words.
Anatidaephobia- fear that somewhere, somehow, a duck is watching you.
Luposlipaphobia- the fear of being pursued by timber wolves around a kitchen table while wearing socks on a newly-waxed floor.
Aibohphobia- Fear of palindromes.



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