Monday, August 4, 2014

Why I'm Afraid

“The concessions of the weak are the concessions of fear.”

Edmund Burke

I got hit with a lot of negative emotions today.  I struggled with disappointment, sadness, apathy, and fear.  I’ve written several blogs on fear and rereading them helped.  My favorite was this one:
While reading it, I realize that fear is an Enemy or a weapon of the Enemy.  Tonight I had these questions:
·      Where does my fear come from?
·      Is it genetic?
·      Is it spiritual?
·      Is it physical, caused or escalated by fatigue, hunger, or some other physical cause?
·      Will I always live with it and just try to manage it?  Or can I get rid of it once and for all?
·      What am I really, really afraid of?  Is it one thing or many things?
·      Am I afraid of living and dying alone and unloved?
·      Am I afraid of losing my Muse?
·      Am I afraid that God will leave me?
·      Am I afraid of Hell?
·      Am I afraid of pain?
·      Am I afraid of being broke?
·      Am I still in fear from events of the past?

I don’t even know what I’m afraid of.  It’s deeper than what appears on the surface.  Yes, I may be afraid of things that seem obvious, but sometimes there’s more.  For example, if someone is mad at me, I might be afraid that I will lose love or friendship, but the fear may be deeper than that.  Or maybe it isn’t.  Maybe I’m afraid of losing relationship with a specific person.  It feels odd that I’m not even sure what I’m afraid of.
Here’s what else is odd:  right now, I don’t feel like writing.  I just want to go to bed…and not because I’m tired.  I just don’t want to write.  The negative emotions of the day have not only gripped my heart, they’ve also tried to put a grip on my hands.  Fear leads to despair.  It leads to the belief that I will never get what I want – my Muse, my house on the beach, the dream of writing for a living.  Despair is telling me to give up, that there’s no point in this.
And there’s more:  it tells me that there are hundreds of thousands of writers out there and millions of books.  It asks me, “What makes you so special? Hardly anyone reads your work.”
The question and the statement are worth examining.  What makes me so special?  God makes me so special.  He also made me for a Purpose and that Purpose is to write and to spend my life with the Muse He gave me.  Those are the things that make me special.  My calling makes me special.  Not better, just special.
The statement, “Hardly anyone reads your work,” is actually true.  This is not because my work isn’t good.  Perhaps I need to get better at publicizing myself.  Perhaps it’s a matter of timing. Perhaps my work will be known posthumously.  Who knows?
I realize this much:  if fear is a tool of the Enemy, the internal Enemy that likes to sabotage my best efforts, its purpose is to keep me from doing my work and being successful.
There it is.
Everything I have failed to do was because I was afraid of success.  I was afraid of moving forward in my life because that would have meant more work, greater challenges, and greater responsibility.  And I was afraid I would be unable to meet these new challenges.  Fear of success is really fear of failure – the fear that I won’t be able to handle the next level of life.  So I stay at this level.  I tell myself it’s safe and comfortable and easy, but it’s none of those things.  Fear of success has wrecked my life.
This fear kept me from studying in college.  It kept me from pursuing the right career.  It kept me stuck in dysfunctional behaviors and unhappy relationships.  It has kept me financially struggling.  It has caused my mind to imagine scenarios of Hell, loneliness, destitution, abandonment, and pain.
So here’s the thing:  I’m going to continue writing.  Even if I have to do it alone.  Even if I die alone.  Even if I don’t get the notice.  I’m going to keep writing.  Every day.  This is my destiny.  This is why I was created – to be with my Muse.  My destiny is not completely fulfilled on this plain of existence anyway.  But while I’m here, I’ll finish my job.  I’ll Get Started and I’ll Keep Going.