"Do not be afraid, have no fear," is one of the most common themes throughout the bible and many other sacred texts. The Voice uttering these words has sounded throughout history to many different people over the ages. Sometimes it's a voice from deep within us. Other times it's an external voice of another, be they angels or saints. It doesn't really matter where the voice comes from. It's more about what the voice is inviting us into.
"Do not be afraid, have no fear," is inviting us into a whole new way of being and belonging right here and right now. Think about it for a minute...What would you do today if you let go of the shame of your past? What would you do today if you weren't worried about the future? What would it look like for you to be fully committed to who you are and your purpose in this present moment and step out in faith and trust?
Yes, there's a risk in stepping out and following this Voice that challenges us to be courageous. We might fail. It might not end up the way we thought it should...and it might be successful and greater than we ever hoped it could be. But there are also consequences for staying trapped in our fear:
Limited Growth-Fear can act as a barrier to personal and professional growth. It can prevent us from taking risks, trying new things, and seizing opportunities that could lead to growth and fulfillment.
Negative Health Effects-Chronic fear and anxiety can have detrimental effects on our physical and mental health, including increased risk of heart disease, weakened immune system, depression and other stress-related illnesses.
Strained Relationships-Fear can cause us to withdraw from others, leading to strained relationships and social isolation. It can also lead to conflicts and misunderstandings in the relationships that matter most to us.
Since my early twenties, I've carried this excerpt from Theodore Roosevelt's speech at the Sorbonne, Paris on April 23, 1910.
“It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself in a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.”
I invite you friend today, to accept the invitation of "Do not be afraid, have no fear" and step into the arena of your one precious life and choose to live and lead courageously!