Over the weekend I heard the story of a young lady who opted to take her own life instead of battling a terminal illness. I cannot imagine the thoughts that she may have wrestled with in making the decision and the days leading up to her death. I know disease drives us to different places, whether it is something as simple as a cold or as scary what that young lady had to face.
One disease that I have battled is fear. It is a disease that can take hold of my life and create a range of feelings and emotions. Fear can be a lingering, nagging illness and fear can be debilitating. I have no doubt there are people who have taken their own lives because of fear and I know people who have quit living because of fear. It is certainly had a stranglehold on me at times.
I battled the disease on Saturday. I thought I was getting over it and moving forward with a new outlook and, out of the blue, BOOM! Fear was back evoking thoughts and feelings that shot through my brain. It affected my breathing. It affected my emotions. It had my brain spinning and my stomach churning.
I suppose there is medicine out there that will help people battle fear but I possess something that is powerful and effective against the disease. Choice. I can choose whether to live in the fear or to move past it. I can choose to believe in something better than fear. I can choose to write a different story. I can choose to know that what I often fear never comes to fruition and, if it does, there is little I can do to change it. All fear does is stop me from living through it.
Choice is a powerful thing. It cannot stop every disease but it can stop fear. While I let part of my Saturday be overcome by fear, I eventually chose to move on, to trust in something better, to not listen to the little fear demon and believe that what I hope for is what is real. I swallowed the choice pill and I’m feeling much, much better about life today.
Grace and peace.