I have countless fears that I have failed to meet head on. Thank goodness I also have fears that I have been running from and turned and ran towards. I use to have two big fears that I now enjoy. One is public speaking, which I am now doing more often and love it. The other is of bears. The bear phobia started when I was fifteen. My dad and I went fishing in Alaska and I had the brilliant idea to buy and read the book, “When Bears Attack.” Smart move I know and only the wisdom of a fifteen year old. Well, three years ago I read “Fearless” by Max Lucado. It is a great book and I highly recommend it. I decided that I would face one of my biggest fears and go bear hunting. I have a friend that bear hunts and he agreed to take me out. That morning we sat and glassed and saw nothing. That was probably a good thing because I was so nervous I was shaking a lot. That evening we went out again and I bagged a three hundred plus pound male black bear. There are two lessons I learned about facing your fears.
1. It is all in the mind. Unreasonable fear like red-eye, five thousand pound claws like Wolverine and an appetite for flesh like the Walking Dead is ridiculous. I really don’t know what I had in my mind, but it was over the top. All fear that prevents us from enjoyment is unrealistic fear. There are some fears that are wisdom. I believe that you know the difference. First step is to recognize if the fear is unrealistic. Try facing it. You may enjoy it. Just make sure that you are stepping out with someone who is supportive and not mocking you.
Fear can turn kittens into tigers. (tweet that)
Photos by: http://kcnewmanphotography.zenfolio.com/
2. Reasonable fear makes it enjoyable. Reasonable fear adds excitement and makes things fun. That’s why some people like scary movies. Not this guy. Once I have gotten over my unrealistic fear, the small fear I feel is what makes bear hunting and speaking fun for me. When your heart rate increases and you are not sure what is around the next corner, it brings excitement to the journey of life. Could I be hurt by a bear attack? Yes, but the chances are not that great. You are more likely to be killed by a moose than a bear. The tiny chance makes it enjoyable.
Do not be controlled by fear. The Bible tells us to not be afraid in many different ways over and over again. We usually have our “buts” that we love to throw in. The fact is unrealistic fear freezes you from having a life that is enjoyable. Speaking and bears are just two examples. You don’t need to go bear hunting unless you want to. Make sure that your fears are not holding you back from a life that you want. Be strong, take courage and be Fearless!