I have been away for a while. Hiding, you could say. Why? Well, because I’ve made a complete mess of my life lately. No, nothing that life threw at me that I could not handle. As a matter of fact, I wish that were the case. It is much less difficult for me to handle the inevitabilities of life, the type of inevitabilities that are not unique to me, but common for everyone, than it is to handle when I screw it up myself – when I betray my values and morals. It has become so laughable to me when I hear people denigrate the *possible* fictitious stories of the Bible. What exactly happens when that… happens – when I (or we) do something wrong, specifically the type of wrong that goes against what we believe? Adam hides from God. He hides from the One that loves him most. Maybe you don’t do the same, reader, but I do. All I want to do is isolate myself when I get it wrong. How has this happened recently? Among other things, fear is the crux of the problem, and what is fear? A sophisticated definition of fear might be “the reliance upon oneself.” Anyway, here goes a list of things that I am afraid of: Snakes, heights, the devil (or the evil side of the supernatural), rejection, a career path that doesn’t suit what I feel are “natural” gifts, having no money, having too much money, prison, death of loved ones, not continuing the ‘Nourse’ name (as I am the last line of defense), the Kings losing to the Ducks in the playoffs – the list is so extensive that I could fill this entire piece with the list alone.
You know what, though? I am not really afraid of any of that. For example, I am not actually afraid of going to prison; I am fearful of what might happen if I ever found myself “on the inside,” given the horror stories we have all heard. What happens in prison is something that I really, really, really, really don’t want to fucking (no pun) occur. However, even in that case, what is the actual fear? The fear is that I will not be okay or that people will find out, and that will render me not okay. This fear applies to any of the other examples. When somebody or society rejects my advances, I fear that they may never accept them; therefore, I will not be okay. It does not have much to do with the person, or the job, or whatever the case. These specific fears are all underneath an umbrella, underneath something that resides at the top. While all my fears are a fear of not being okay, the all-encompassing fear is something to the effect of, “what if God finds out about this!?”
What if the people I love find out about this? Are they going to disown me, so to speak!? I won’t be okay if that happens. What if my future employer finds out about this? Are they not going to hire me? I won’t be okay! What if the person I am trying to impress finds out about this? I’d much rather hide than confront certain realities, and it is in there that lies the solution. It would all be okay if I stopped hiding from the Creator of the Universe. You tell me, reader. Is there anything more frightening than that!? How do you expect me to face God as I am, right now, in this present state that I find myself in? Absolutely not. I have a better idea – I shall wait till I get my money right, my mind right, my relationships in order, and when all of these things manifest themselves, I will finally turn around to God and tell him, “Thank you.” Not how it works, is it? I know that is not how it works, and yet, I will stubbornly attempt to make it work the way I want it to work, then wonder why I am so afraid.
There is a man in one of my groups, an older man, who holds within him a lot of wisdom. At least, I think (or thought) he did anyway. He is the type of individual that if you say something that people might take to, he feels he has no choice but to interject himself and “one-up” you. I don’t write this to disparage him in any way, but I had shared something about how my fears are ultimately a fear of God himself. I’ve always thought that the people who utter the line, “I fear nothing but God himself,” were puffing out their chests. Maybe they are, maybe they aren’t, but in the event that they aren’t, they are certainly on to something. Anyway, the interjection came: “I don’t fear God today; I only love God.” Interesting. So, let me get this straight. Here we have an All-Powerful God, an admitted jealous God, who loathes nothing more than sin, who can – not only can – but will do whatever He wants, whenever He wants, as He sees fit, with the snap of a finger, and you don’t think that is anything to be afraid of? The only way there can be no fear of God is if one is without sin. Let me tell you, without sin, I am not.
That’s the peculiar thing about sin. It only “works,” whatever that means, if the one committing the sin is without conscience. Even in the circumstance where we know what we are doing is wrong, but maybe we say to ourselves that we “do not care,” the admittance that there is indeed wrongdoing is all that is needed to be shackled by sin. Guilty conscience is the term, right? What is a “guilty conscience” other than the Supreme Being letting you know that He knows what you are doing? For my money, there is no greater fear than knowing that God is onto me.
We have to end with a solution. Unfortunately, a frightening one. The only alternative would be to face God just as I am, face the people that I love but have harmed, accept and admit the truth, and ask God and company for forgiveness. This is me. An alcoholic, compulsive gambling, fragile ego’d, thirty-two-year-old child. Great. Out of the fog, the defects come. Now, let’s fucking get on with it. Help me to stay close to You, help me to get outside of myself, rid me of the fear that it will not be okay, for if I trust in You and not myself, it will be okay.