By Charles Towne
Everybody has felt fear at one time or another in their life.
When I was about the size of a wart on a runty toad’s behind I had an intimate relationship with fear. Fear was a constant companion. I was afraid of the dark, noises in the night, trains, authority, and anything I couldn’t explain.
The time finally arrived when I realized that I was afraid of everything, and fear was controlling my life and with that realization, I set out to conquer my fears.
I will never forget the night I decided to confront my fear of trains. Not far from our home was a railroad track. This was back in the day of the steam locomotives and the train prowled its way through the night, screaming at all the R.R. crossings like a manic banshee.
I forced myself out of bed that night and quietly got dressed and, forcing myself to my task I found myself on the railroad tracks. Soon, too soon, I sensed IT. Even before I could hear that sinister presence I could feel the violent vibration of iron wheels on the steel tracks. Then, far in the distance, that shrieking, howling relentless scream filled the night.
I forced myself to stand at the side of the track, my fear demanding that I run, trembling, back to my home. Then, finally, it was there. I could have reached out and touched it as it bulled past but it was enough that I was there. Then, on cue, that whistle filled the night. I picked up a rock and threw it at the train, and that huge behemoth fled into the night, afraid of the boy, and the train was gone.
Three things I learned that night when I was seven or eight years old. One was the train was just a train, to be respected, and not feared. Two, the sound of the whistle was just that, a sound in the night, and three, the night held mystery, but not terror.
There are seven major fears and they can all be banished. The most debilitating of these is the fear of poverty, believe me, I know from personal experience how poverty can control one’s life.
Another fear is that demon, criticism. Then there is the fear of sickness. Another one is the loss of love, followed by old age. Then there is the fear of freedom, followed by that final and ultimate fear, death.
As I long ago I forced myself to vanquish fear from my own life I hope to assist you in doing the same. Our fears might be different but believe me, they are all within our control.
Papa God advice is good for all of us when He says, “Fear not, for I am with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you… I am your God!”
Charles Towne is first and foremost a Christian. An octogenarian, author, journalist, wildlife photographer, naturalist, caregiver, and survivor, his life has been and continues to be, a never-ending adventure filled with possibilities never imagined. He has adopted the philosophy that to Live fully, laugh uproariously, love passionately, and learn like there is no tomorrow, is a formula for a long and joy-filled life.