Other than my family’s safety, there are few things that actually scare me. I love heights, or more specifically the sensation of falling. Snakes and reptiles are better than fluffy kitties! There are few movies that get under my skin, its usually a psychological thriller on my playlist anyway. I babysat my friend’s pet rattlesnake for a week even. Yeah. And, your point is?!
I especially do not believe I am afraid of my own mortality.
Wow! That got heavy quickly, right? Different pieces of my week have come back to this central issue, so I might as well process it and potentially start a dialogue. Remember, my faith is part of my narrative, so when I write about Jesus and heaven, don’t be offended. I am sharing my perspective, just like the fact that I believe Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnakes are amazing beautiful creatures.
I find it ironic that this life-threatening species lived with me, and yet, I continue to fret and worry over what I said or did ‘made me appear silly’.
I have been listening to Steven Furtick, Crash The Chatterbox. In his candid manner of speaking, he shared his father’s struggle with ALS and suicidal ideations. It had to have been horrible to experience the disease. My heart goes out to the loved ones, who are helpless to save him from either eventuality. Frantic one night, convinced his dad will harm himself, Steven calls a friend for reassurance. (We all need that 3:00 am friend). This friend listened and gave Steven the greatest clarity that night. Forgive me if I don’t have the quote exact, “What if he does [take his life]?”
What!? Maybe we don’t need friends like that. Or maybe we do. Perspective is a valuable and precious gift. Honesty and compassion are not incompatible. Steven realized that, despite the magnitude of loss, he would be okay. That God would be there in the midst of suffering. I have wrestled with the ‘sadistic diety’ concept many times. Why would a god who loves us, take our loved one and then comfort us? He doesn’t. But that is a discussion for another day.
My anxiety rules my life, my fears are petty First World Problems, and I know this. How can I gain perspective? Can I grow to the point of ambivalence and unphased peace? Can I see the beauty in the danger? Can I find comfort in the pain? Can I find boldness to look a situation in the eye and say, “Yeah….And?”