Real Fear Motivates

Real Fear Motivates

Pentecost 158


Recent events have indicated that stress levels in the United States are directly linked to elevated levels of stress.  Many blame the rhetoric of the Republican candidate while others feel it is the alleged dereliction of duty and proper security protocols by the Democratic candidate that are the cause.  Some have washed their hands of the election process completely which adds to the stress of others who firmly believe such an attitude will lead to anarchy and the dissolution of the nation.


None of this stress is creating anything but more accusations, however.  Where is the cause and effect?  While negativity does lead to elevated stress, it can also create action.  IN today’s climate, the higher stress levels claimed by many are simply leading to more verbiage without greater action.


Jon Huntsman, Sr. is well known as the founder of a global chemical manufacturing company.  What might not be as well known is that he gives away a great deal of his income.  He became a serious humanitarian in 1992 after a diagnosis of prostate cancer.  En route to the hospital, he wrote a one million dollar check to a homeless shelter, another to a local soup kitchen feeding the homeless and poor, and half a million dollars to the clinic that first diagnosed and discovered his tumor.  He later began his own cancer foundation at a cost of over one billion dollars.


This humanitarian has long been giving away his money, which totals well into the billion dollar range. Founder of a global chemical manufacturer, his serious giving days began in 1992 when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. On his way to the hospital, he gave a one million dollar check to a homeless shelter, another million to a soup kitchen, and $500,000 to the clinic that first found the malignancy. Huntsman would go on to found his own cancer foundation, which cost him more than one billion dollars alone. His donations have even gone so far as to knock him of the Forbes list of wealthiest individuals. 


It is said that there are no atheists in a foxhole during war when bullets or missiles are flying overhead.  True fear motivates people.  The reality is that fear creates its own cause and effect and in order to withstand the fear, we seek to do something, to make the situation better.  There are those times where we have no control over the fear.  We can control our response, though.  Behavior to bring about positive changes helps us destress.  Making what has become ordinary during this election something extraordinary can be as simple as doing something.


Volunteering to be a mentor or, if you do not feel academically capable, volunteering to help behind the scenes at such locations, is a perfect start to living your beliefs and helping your local community.  Rather than listening to someone tell you how to live, go out and live according to your beliefs.  Baking or providing cookies for public servants like firemen or police officers is an easy first step.  Being a Big Brother or Big Sister is another and these programs have training sessions to help you get started.


If making hats or weaving plastic bags into water proof mats is more your style, your local homeless shelter would be happy for donations of your handiwork.  One of the easiest ways to make a blanket is to purchase a yard of flannel and then fringe each end.  That is done by cutting slits five inches long on either end.  The strips become fringe and the blankets is an easy yet warm addition to any homeless person’s bedroll, lightweight yet a good layering insulator for cold nights.


Hopefully, you will not wait until you are scared or have a diagnosis of a life-altering or possible life-ending disease.  It doesn’t take a million-dollar paycheck to become a humanitarian.  We all have the ability to help another and when we live grace, we receive grace.  Life is really just that simple.  Life is much more that going about your daily schedule stressed out.  Life is about making positive change with positive action.

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