What are the storms in my life that keep me terrified?
What are my fears and anxieties?
As a child, I used to be afraid of the dark.
You could never send me alone into a dark room or a dark place.
I was afraid there would be ghosts or monsters who would do me harm.
Soon enough, I learned ghosts are exactly that –
ghosts, mere chimera of my wild imagination.
From then on, I was never afraid of the dark.
There are times I even welcome and long for it.
I was afraid of failure and rejection.
I was afraid I was never good enough for other people to love or to even just like me.
I was afraid of being excluded from groups I wanted to be a part of.
I was afraid that people I liked would not like me in return.
It took me longer
(and the fear and anxiety of rejection does come back every now and then)
to realize that these fears of failure and rejections are also mere ghosts.
I have learned that people who really matter in my life
will like and love me for what and who I am – warts and all.
That was a most liberating realization.
And those who would reject me anyway,
I have realized I can live without them in my life.
I was afraid of pain and suffering, of getting hurt or being harmed.
I was afraid of physical harm, psychological pain and spiritual suffering.
And most of all, I was afraid of these pains and sufferings
coming into the lives of people I love.
I would do everything to shelter and protect them from these.
But then, what really is pain and suffering?
There is no pain or suffering that cannot be relieved or healed.
And pain and suffering that cannot be healed or relieved will soon pass away.
And what does not pass away, I have learned to adapt to
and these have served to make me stronger.
And why deny my loved ones of pain and suffering when these could teach
them lessons I could never teach them through my words?
I still sometimes get afraid of going hungry.
But then, there were days in the past I had less food than I do now;
and yet I was no less happy then.
I am still afraid of ending up in the poor house, living in penury and poverty.
But then, I have gone through days when I had but a fraction of the resources I have today.
I have done it in the past, I can do it again in the future –
that is, to live a poor man’s life.
I still am afraid of dying, not of death.
I am afraid to be a burden to people I love during my last days.
I am afraid of the pain I might not be able to endure.
I am afraid of the suffering that would be inflicted on me
and I might inflict on others.
But then again, there are mere ghosts in my mind.
I should only be afraid of not loving enough
even when there is still an ounce of love in me to give.
I should only be afraid of not giving more
even when I have but a handful left to give.
I should only be afraid of not being grateful
for all the untold blessings that I have enjoyed in my life.
I should only be afraid that I should fail to smile
for all the beauty and goodness around me.
I should only be afraid that I fail to follow the light or heed that call
that have beckoned me all my life.
Lead me in your justice, Lord.
As Jesus got into a boat, his disciples followed him.
Suddenly a violent storm came up on the sea,
so that the boat was being swamped by waves;
but he was asleep.
They came and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We are perishing!”
He said to them, “Why are you terrified, O you of little faith?”
Then he got up, rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was great calm.
The men were amazed and said, “What sort of man is this,
whom even the winds and the sea obey?”