Paralyzed/ Fear

A Life Observation #1

Paralyzed.

To be paralyzed, unable to move, and totally dependent on the work and care of others is terrifying. The thought scares me greatly.

Obviously, there are many in this world who suffer paralyzing injuries and manage to claw their way back to living a productive and happy life. How they do so often proves to be a powerful testimony and an inspiration.

For that reason (politics aside), I am a fan of Charles Krauthammer. I so appreciate how he has overcome his paralysis to do all the things he does so well.

All that being said, the idea of being paralyzed is absolutely terrifying.

In the movie Remember the Titans, there is a character who has a fateful car accident right before the state high school football championship. Cole knew every word and scene by memory. As we would watch this favorite movie, Cole would always cry when we found out this star player had lost the use of his legs for the rest of his life.

Living in a wheelchair gave him lots of empathy.

Several weeks ago, Becki and I watched the movie late one Friday night. And yes, I cried again for Cole and with Cole.

I hate the brokenness of our world where vibrant people sometimes find their physical lives restricted in such horrible fashion.

Unfortunately, the brokenness of this world often casts its shadow and influence in ways we least expect. The result is a life that has become paralyzed.
Or hearts.
Or spirits.
Or futures.

I have known this paralysis first hand.
Grief and tragedy can stunt, stymie, and paralyze even the strongest among us.

But beyond the horrific that sometimes occurs, many of us have become paralyzed in one fashion or another for a variety of reasons or excuses.

Here’s a life observation: From my perspective, FEAR is the biggest and greatest culprit.

I fear.
And it’s often paralyzing.

Please don’t see this as something I am saying as result of our tragedy. This has often been my nature both before and after.

Most of the time my fears are self administered. I allow fear to take root and it is almost always self-limiting.

As a result, I can find myself afraid to hope, afraid to dream, and afraid to live.

I would be less than honest to suggest that our tragedy had no effect on this. I know it did, but as I alluded earlier, it could only magnify a tendency already in existence for me.

Living in fear is no fun especially when that fear paralyzes and keeps one from living the life they should.

Yes, we may get rejected.
Yes, we may fail miserably.
And yes, we may wear ourselves out trying and trying again.

But If we quit, if we let fear win, what does it get us but additional misery?

Not this guy.
Not this guy.

I may get down.
I may occasionally feel momentarily defeated.
But I just can’t quit.

Not today.
Not tomorrow.
Not next year.
I am kind of stubborn like that…

What fear is holding you back? Wrestle with it now! I know you can! The New Year is coming soon. Wouldn’t it be great to face the New Year with the confidence? God can help; ask Him!

I love what Paul tells Timothy: …for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. (2 Timothy 1:7 NLT)

Thanks for reading this first in a series of life observation posts!

Les Ferguson, Jr.