I have a new article up at NewEvangelizers.com.
Recently on Twitter someone I follow sent me this quote from Fr. Ron Rolheiser: “The opposite of fear is not doubt but anxiety.”
The older I have become I have noticed more and more anxiety creeping into my life. But in talking with my friends as we travel on through the years, it seems to weigh heavier and heavier on them as well.
What I found so resonant about Rolheiser’s insight was that I have long suspected that my rising anxiety is because of deficiency in faith. I have little doubt that God is real. And yet my mind is often confused by anxiety.
Let me say at the outset that I am not writing about those who have legitimate anxiety disorders. In these cases, a serious problem must be addressed with a mental help professional and spiritual counselor. Nor am I addressing a legitimate emotional reaction to a great disaster. Jesus was so intensely afraid the night before He died that He sweat blood. But he had before Him not a general worry about the future but a specific torturous death waiting for him.
For the purposes of this article, however, I am addressing the everyday worries and fears and saturate daily life. And these are centered around the uncertain future. Here, there is no specific worry, like Christ had with the certainty of the cross or someone diagnosed with cancer fears the pain of treatment. No, here we are talking about a generalized state of unsettledness about what COULD happen in the future.
And anyone connected to mass media knows that the news seems almost always bad. It isn’t that bad things are happening (which they are), but that there is a gloomy shadow cast over the future. Things appear to be getting worse and a general feeling of hopelessness can overtake us.
I do not know if my struggles with anxiety are universal, so I shall only analyze my own personal experience and attempt to bring some solution to light. I pray that if this is an issue for you that you may also find it helpful.
You can read the entire article here.