There are noticeable dangers. There are also silent, sneaking ones. Once, a family friend was nearly taken by carbon monoxide poisoning. In a world where scary things happen every day, how are we to cope? How can we go through life without being afraid of our own shadow?
How can I handle the possibility that during my trip to the grocery store, I might be robbed – or that when I leave my car in the parking lot, it might be vandalized – or that on my way home, I might be caught in a car accident? Maybe it is safer to stay at home. Perhaps I should stay inside and try not to think about my chances of encountering a slippery floor – or salmonella – or a burglary – or fire. Well, I guess bad things can happen anywhere, at any time. This is a scary thought. I think I'll spend the rest of my life looking over my shoulder. At least this way, I can see trouble coming... sometimes.
On second thought, maybe I'll take a different approach to life's uncertainties. I'll take a jog even though someone might try to harm me. I'll drive my car even though people sometimes run red lights. I'll learn to swim, even though I nearly drowned once. And I won't live in fear.
Living without fear doesn't mean that you can do whatever you want, blissfully oblivious of the consequences. It doesn't mean you should jog at night, drive a car through a bad storm, or swim against strong currents. Living without fear means going through your day with your eyes open, being aware of both good and bad circumstances, and being ready to face whatever comes your way. You realize that bad things happen, but you don't let this knowledge consume your thoughts. Instead of nervously thinking, “What if...”, you calmly live in the present. And when nighttime rolls around, instead of thinking, “Oh my, is something moving in my closet?” or “Look at the clock! Another hour has gone by without me going to sleep,” you think: “Well, I had a long day at work, but now I get to take it easy.” And before you know it, you're fast asleep. Tomorrow you will be fresh and ready to bravely take on a new day.