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Phobiaphobic

     When asked "what is your greatest fear?" most people respond with concrete fears: snakes, rats, heights, closed spaces, clowns, etc.  Not me, sure being high in the air with little to no protection causes interesting physiological reactions in me, but really that isn't what truly shakes me.  What I'm afraid of is cowardice.  I'm afraid that in some extreme situation, which most people don't experience anyway, I'll respond in some George Costanza-like manner, panic and run.
     Courage is a virtue, after all.  Not only for Christians, but for the ancient Pagans as well.  Courage is acting in spite of the fear that might make one weep, cringe, collapse, or run.  Courage is accepting martyrdom, running into a burning building, standing for the right in the midst of relativism.
      I suppose I have been tested a few times in this.  In high school I stood up to a bully hassling a girl (granted the bully was a girl too, but still...no one else in the class did anything).  Another time, just a few years ago, in my neighborhood as I was driving somewhere, I pulled up on a man beating on some woman.  I got out of my car and clumsily distracted him from his assault.  Another man showed up and helped as well.  It turned out the guy, who was much bigger than me, was beating his mother.  I don't know what that was all about, but still I guess I did something.
      Regardless of past actions, I still have this lingering phobia that when "the time comes" I'll freeze, I'll keep quiet, I'll avert my eyes.  Lord have mercy!  Make me bold.







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