Shalom! A Journal for the Practice of Reconciliation is a quarterly publication of the Brethren in Christ Church. Its mission is to educate and stimulate Christ-like responses to the needs of society by providing biblical, theological, sociological, denominational and personal perspectives on a variety of comtemporary issues.
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Spring 2016, "Fear Not"
Fear is a powerful motivator, and it motivates us far more often than we'd like to think and act in ways we wish we hadn't. Some fear is normal and helps us take appropriate precautions to protect ourselves. But the current emphasis on all the things we should fear (economic collapse and financial disaster, crime, loss of freedom and our way of life, the “other,” death, terrorism) runs the risk of turning us into people we should not want to be: xenophobic, racist, and sexist; ungenerous and self-centered; angry, mean-spirited, and insulting; violent in our words and actions; unable to live up to the very values we hold dear. Rather than be afraid of the possibility of terrorism, crime, economic collapse, or something as yet unknown, we should be able to walk through the dark valleys without fear because we know God is with us whatever happens (see Psalm 23). We should be ruled by love, compassion, and generosity, rather than by fear.