• DINA HAWTHORNE

What does it mean to be scared?

-Why are we afraid to be scared?

-Why do we avoid this authentic human expression? For as long as I can remember being afraid was always a sign of weakness, an emotion you needed to never linger in too long or acknowledge. Oddly, when watching a scary movie, it was deemed okay to be scared for the ladies but never for the men. I guess you would be so afraid you would have no other place to find comfort, other than in the arms of the man that you are enjoying the film alongside. (This is not the topic we are discussing; we will explore this at a later time.)



So, why is being afraid of an emotion we aren’t to accept. Some people spend their entire life telling themselves they aren’t scared of anything, because they are brave, which I usually later find that they are equating fear with being afraid. Now once again, this isn’t the angle I am taking. Still, I mentioned it because it was something I noticed whenever someone felt the need to express their lack of being afraid when asked the question, do you ever find yourself fearful of something, anything? And the response is usually (based on the handful of people that I have had the pleasure of asking this question)


I am not afraid of nothing. I refuse to live my life in fear, fearful of anything or anyone.

This always confused me. Maybe I am too deep, too analytical, too far-reaching, too much, and possibly too critical of myself and perhaps of others. (Shrugging shoulders and pucker my lips.) However, I am still perplexed by this response and the inability to feel afraid and openly communicate this emotion entirely. I am quickly reminded, God isn’t the God of fear and fear shouldn’t live in me, and wait it gets better, you can even find someone who will say,

"it’s okay to be scared." 

Wow, have I found the crack, the loophole to being openly afraid under the guise of “being scared.” I am now aloud to say I am scared and be consoled and told: “everything is gonna be alright, it’s okay?” Am I finally going to be able to get that chest to face hug? Did I find the workaround to my fear, fright, my being afraid? I am scared it is okay?! Of course, my over-analytical self, I must define this word Scared. I need to understand why it gets a pass. Is being scared juvenile, infantile? Is this seen as a severe case, a case that requires gentle gloves? Why is it okay to be sacred, but not afraid? I needed to get to the bottom of it. I am shocked. The very words we aren’t to engage in are the very words that are used to define – scared.

I am screwed, or am I? 

Nope. I am embracing reality, this life is scary, and I have every right to be afraid at times. I am not scared to say I am scared at times; I experience the feeling of fear, which translates, my Spirit is letting me know to pay attention to something. My Spirit is telling me to proceed with caution to take the necessary steps to adjust to my current environment.


Let me add I do not possess the “Spirit of Fear,” which I believe I covered in the devotional. I am merely addressing the feeling of fear, and the right of passage to acknowledge – I am scared! I am afraid! Now what? Act. Put your faith to work. Sometimes it may mean to slow down, sometimes it may mean to go in another direction, sometimes it may mean reevaluate, however rarely does it ever prevent you from doing the best and most noble act for yourself. Free yourself.

Get Up and Do It Scared!

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