'Nothing to Fear'

One of the most famous quotes from a speech came from the first inaugural address of Franklin D. Roosevelt on March 4, 1933. In it he stated:

This is preeminently the time to speak the truth, the whole truth, frankly and boldly. Nor need we shrink from honestly facing conditions in our country today. This great Nation will endure, as it has endured, will revive and will prosper.

So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself - nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror that paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.

No matter our race, gender, creed, or financial status, we will all face adversity as we traverse this valley of tears. The adversity could come in the form of one, some, or all of the following: financial hardship, poor health, divorce, loss of a loved one, and/or the struggle with addictions. All of us will be tested. How do we continue to face these demons that are so much a part of our daily lives? We must first prepare for battle; we must put on the armor of God!

So stand fast with your loins girded in truth, clothed with righteousness as a breastplate, and your feet shod in readiness for the gospel of peace. In all circumstances, hold faith as a shield, to quench all [the] flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. (Eph 6:14-17)

We must speak the truth, and we must live that truth! Never be afraid to tell others that you are a Christian. All of God's creatures are special, but many in our nation are more preoccupied with saving white-tailed sparrows and tree frogs and often mindless political debate while huge issues are minimized, including the act of partially delivering a human infant ready to take it first breath, inserting a scalpel into its skull, and extracting its brain. The young child that was minutes away from enjoying the "right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness" is then delivered stillborn.

"Don't talk about it, and don't go there in conversation, as that is a personal matter between a woman and her doctor," I hear people say.

What should be a most exciting and memorable event - the birth of a child - has, for some, become a most heinous event. Children, as a gift from God, are increasingly looked on as a bother, a nuisance, and an inconvenience.

But we must act out of love of God and with peace. All our actions must be done out of love of God. We must seek truth and learn the faith. We must be prepared to defend our beliefs. We must help others find Jesus Christ. As the Lord said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life" (Jn 14:6). So many people are floundering in search of peace and happiness and have lost their way. The saying rings true that, if you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there.

What is the answer? Remember that fear is incompatible with trust in God. You cannot be anxious, fearful, and discouraged if you trust in the Lord. Let us reflect on the words of our Lord to St. Faustina: "Mankind will not have peace until it learns to trust in My mercy" (Diary of St. Faustina, 300).

Yes, the antidote has arrived! Isn't that a cause for hope? Now, it is up to the people to take the antidote so that we may live. No matter how discouraged you become, I ask that you pray for the strength to trust in Him in all situations! For "the more a soul trusts, the more (graces) it will receive" (Diary, 1578).

Dr. Bryan Thatcher is the founder of Eucharistic Apostles of The Divine Mercy (EADM), an apostolate of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception.

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