My life is saturated with fear. Fear of my past, of my future. Fear of who I am – and am not. Fear of what I have done and what I have not done. Jesus says to the disciples, “Be not afraid.” Over and over, he tells them this, for they are bound by fear. I offered up ‘fear’ from my internal vocabulary during a time when I was hospitalized for a compulsive illness that had wrapped its insidious tendrils around my soul and body. When I was no longer clutching fear, I had the freedom to cling to Christ. As I brought my affliction into the light, I was given clarity to see that God’s mercy is sustenance enough for my need. This offering is a practice: imperfect and incomplete. As I slowly begin to heal, I must give my fear to God, over and over. Yet I know it is Jesus’ words in my heart, patient and abiding: “Be not afraid.”

Elizabeth, MA