Fear Part 4

Part IV of a 12 Part Series

FEAR

“What on earth are you afraid of?”

(Compiled by Michael T. Sullivan, MD)

 

“Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy

that will be for all the people.  For today in the city of David,

a Savior has been born for you who is Messiah and Lord.” 

(Lk 2:10-11)

 

In medical terms, “fear” is often defined as an unpleasant, strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger, often accompanied by increased autonomic activity (increased heart rate, blood pressure and sweating).  “Anxiety” is defined by an abnormal and overwhelming sense of apprehension and fear often marked by the same physiological signs, by doubt concerning the reality and nature of the threat, and by self-doubt about one’s capacity to cope with it.  However, “fear” in the most general term as used in the English vernacular, and so often in the multitude of mystical gifts from God the Father in His Words, Our Lord Jesus Christ in His Lessons and Our Lady of Emmitsburg in her Messages through Gianna Sullivan, most often implies anxiety and usually loss of courage.  The moral evaluation of anxiety begins with the exercise of prudence, to discover if there are valid grounds for the apprehension.  If there are not, to act on the anxiety or fail to act because of it would be a lack of trusting God’s Providence.

Part IV

 

13.  Fear of Defending God's Truth

14.  Fear of Rejection

15.  Fear of Failure

 

 

 

Fear of Defending God's Truth

 

St. Paul to the Corinthians

"We have renounced shameful, hidden things;

not acting deceitfully or falsifying the Word of God,

but by the open declaration of the truth

we commend ourselves to everyone's conscience in the sight of God. 

And even though our Gospel is veiled,

it is veiled for those who are perishing,

in whose case the god of this age has blinded the minds of the unbelievers,

so that they may not see the Light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ,

who is the image of God."

(2 Cor 4:2-4)

 

"For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth. 

For we rejoice when we are weak but you are strong. 

What we pray for is your improvement."

(2 Cor 13: 21)

 

God is good.  God has been generous to all His children.  No human being knows more than our beloved Mother Mary, the Mother of Jesus, how faithful God has been to His promises.  Now Our Lady of Emmitsburg invites all her children:

 

"I have bestowed upon you many blessings in the Name of Jesus and have given you many proofs that I am your Mother….Now I invite you to defend God's ways through love and prayer and to avoid violence at all costs.  Do not be afraid to take a risk for His cause.  Do not be reluctant in defending Him against those who insult Him.  Defend His interests and honor through love, not violence….He accepted all persecution for love of you.  Now I invite you to defend His ways and to glorify Him through love and prayer…"  (Public OLOE, April 27, 1995)

 

In 2005, even after 16 years of sharing her messages with all her children, Our Lady of Emmitsburg said:

 

"You do not yet have the vision of tomorrow, for the new tomorrow is great.  What vision you should have is one that is holy, peaceful and filled with Love.  If you desire to have that vision, then you must rise to the occasion and be true champions and heroes of God's Love.  You must wear the banner of His Light and speak the words of His Truth.  You cannot be afraid to face those who would desire to blaspheme God.  You cannot be afraid to speak for the Truth with which God has blessed you, especially here where He has allowed me to come.  You cannot be afraid of change.  You must wear the Truth, believe it with all your heart, and trust."  (Private OLOE, May 31, 2005)

 

However, it is not just being willing to defend the Truth to those who would blaspheme God.  It is also a matter of being willing to defend the truth of Our Lady of Emmitsburg's presence here at the Center of her Immaculate Heart, where she comes with so many graces of healing and conversion, and where so many of those graces are seemingly being blocked by the arrogance, pretentiousness, mishandling, mistakes and indifference of some of those in authority:

 

"My children love  God the Father, God the Son & God the Holy Spirit; and many of the people who throw more sorrowful nails into my Heart are the same people who also claim to love God the Father, God the Son & God the Holy Spirit, and who pray intensely to my most Immaculate Heart.  Yet, they pray in a way that is most pleasing to themselves.  They do not really and truly want what God wants; because if they did, they would be so pleased that I am here for them….So, encourage my children, who are ambassadors of Light, not to be afraid to stand as pillars, the pillars that will be strong to guide the ship carrying the Eucharistic Reign of my Child to fruition."  (Private OLOE, July 28, 2005)  "Do not be afraid to defend me.  Do not be afraid of the Truth.  If there is anything to be afraid of, it is what you yourselves may have omitted in defending God's Love and the Truth of my presence here.  The time will come when this will end, and then what will you say?  I suggest that you bring forth now, all those here to the Center of my most Immaculate Heart, while the time is still at hand for all to receive the seal of God's Presence."  (Private OLOE, July 26, 2005)

 

As various obstacles have been placed in front of Our Lady's plan, and while numerous examples of slander, calumny, detraction, untruths, half-truths, and gross misunderstandings and misrepresentations have been directed at these mystical gifts from God and the principals involved, it has often been difficult to know when and how to defend the Truth.  Our Lady of Emmitsburg continues to address this:

 

"Pray with all your heart that you are cleansed of all fallacies; but yet, be open to the little Light of guidance that will lead you and keep you safe.  Do not be afraid to speak the Truth at the proper time; and I pray that you will know when that time is.  Just simply know that as you see when the sun comes and when the sun goes, and the weather changes with its wind, clouds, rain and snow, so too you know in which season the sun bears fruit.  Then also know when and how you should be prepared to protect yourself and those you love and those around you; and know how to speak the Truth."  (Private OLOE, Jan. 13, 2009)

 

God the Father Himself places Truth, absolute Truth in its proper perspective:

 

"All are invited; but few truly choose to walk, to be guided, and to live in Faith….Come to know the Truth of salvation and redemption, and the Truth of sacrifice, of Love and of total abandonment to My Will, even to the point of death."  (GTF, Feb. 8, 2006)  "I created a world to be free….Make no mistake about it; you will know the Truth, whether it be in this your life now or when you meet my Son, your Savior.  When you see Me face to face, you will know the absolute Truth….I remain faithful, at all costs! The choice is yours."  (GTF, Feb. 8, 2007)

 

It will take courage to defend the Truth, at all costs, but Our Lord in His Lessons to the world promises us that our efforts will not be in vain:

 

"Do not lose sight of the Truth or allow the evil one to pollute your visual clarity.  Stay close to Me, at all costs, through your faith.  Believe in Me, and failure will not exist because you will believe in yourself.  Treat yourself as if you are Me because I am in you."  (JOM, Vol IV, #34, July 20, 1992)

 

"Remember, the fruits of your labor will pass, and your suffering will be comforted and greatly rewarded for holding yourself in contempt for My good pleasure and honor alone!…So take heed now, and have the courage to bow down yourself humbly unto Me at all costs."  (JOM, Vol III, #22, March 2, 1991)

 

St. Paul to the Romans:

"For the standard by which you judge another, you condemn yourself….

We know that the judgment of God on those who do such things is true….

who will render to every man according to his works.  To them indeed,

who according to patience in good work, seek glory and honor and incorruption: eternal life.  But to them that are contentious,

and who obey not the truth, but give credit to iniquity: 

wrath and indignation." 

(Rom 2:1-2, 6-8)

 

 

Fear of Rejection

 

Jesus to the Disciples:

"Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you

and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of Me. 

Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in Heaven. 

Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you."  

(Mt 5: 11-12)

 

"But I say to you, love your enemies,

and pray for those who persecute you

that you may be children of your heavenly Father." 

(Mt 5:44-45)

 

According to Webster's Dictionary, "to reject" means to refuse to take, agree, use or believe; to discard as worthless, useless or substandard; and/or to deny acceptance, care or love to someone.  The person rejected may feel ostracized and fear mockery and negative retribution from superiors, family, friends or enemies.  It is this fear of rejection that influences the behavior of many and may lead them to not pursue the Truth, to dilute the Truth, or to even deny the Truth.  Our Lady of Emmitsburg speaks of the battle against Truth:

 

"Little ones, face your challenges and obstacles of life and rise above them by working continuously in the field of Love.  Meet your offenders without fear and press for unity through Love.  Do not be afraid to risk your honor, and never cease working in the field of Love and the service of God….The battle against the Truth strikes, but the power of persistence, perseverance and Love results in victory, freedom and Peace."  (Public OLOE, Dec. 8, 1994)

 

From the very onset, the Holy Family experienced every sort of rejection.  Life itself, during those times in which Jesus, Mary and Joseph lived, was saturated with rejection from every direction.  Our Lady shares what can be the worst form of rejection:

 

 

"It is very important that all my children understand and know what rejection is.  The most cruel and abusive reaction towards an innocent person is rejection with silence of speech.  …Everyone desires to be loved.  When you reject someone, the pain in the heart is as if the person is crucified.  It is far better to be loved and to die, than to live and to be rejected.  It is far better to die than to be treated as if you were dead."  (Private OLOE, Mar. 16, 2008)

 

As a loving Mother, Our Lady suffers when she sees any of her children experiencing the pain of rejection.  Gianna herself, whose level of rejection needs to be met with heroic virtue, Our Lady of Emmitsburg consoles and encourages:

 

"My loved one (Gianna), God gave you a sign of "Mercy & Love."  That was the sign He gave you even prior to my appearances to you.  Yet, as you know, Mercy is not only Love in action, but it is loving those who reject you….Be strong and know that the great gift you have is a real blessing indeed, especially when people reject you and do not like you.  You must love them and be merciful as was my Son."  (Private OLOE, Mar. 31, 2008)

 

"Rejection is very difficult because all people want to be loved; and that is why the world is in so much turmoil today, because of the lack of love." (Private OLOE, Feb. 18, 2006) "The people of the world simply desire so much love themselves and have experienced so much rejection that they want to be more important and to have more self-seeking rewards and gratification come their way."  (Private OLOE, Mar. 18, 2004 )    "It is because my Son loves you so much that He comes to you.  He comes to you knowing that you are sinners.  However, because people live with so much rejection in their lives and desire so much to be loved, He comes to you to allow you to know how much you are loved and how much He desires to be with you, as if each of you were the only one who existed."  (Private OLOE, Jan. 21, 2004)

 

Our Lord in His Lessons to the world warned of what would happen if people choose to follow Him.  He did not paint a picture of fun and games or of unending consolation:

 

"This is not to say that one who is good shall not suffer or be afflicted with temptations….If you are ostracized, it does not mean you are bearing bad fruit.  Remember the false prophets were highly praised by many people.  No, when you are scorned and troubled, mocked and ridiculed and slandered, the fruit you bear is fermenting from bitterness to savoring sweetness.  Therefore, be at peace when God allows you to be chastised and pressed through the mill of sweet graces."  (JOM, Vol V, #20, Sept. 13, 1995)

 

Our Lady further warned of the mocking and scorn which results from those plagued by spiritual jealousy, not knowing exactly what is going on in your spiritual lives:

 

"All those who follow Jesus have their cross and will end in the same fate as He.  The world may scorn the deeds, duties and practices you accomplish in hiddenness.  They may mock you because you do not make evident your virtues or win their honor or esteem.  Do not be discouraged, but be strong.  Seek God's approval only….The honor you seek should not be from man.  Those who walk in this world's certainty are not walking in the certainty of God's Truth….Mocking may even exist within your Christian community."  (Public OLOE, Dec. 7, 1995)  "I can tell you that true Charity will be precisely gifted upon those who are scorned, mocked, persecuted and laughed at.  Little ones, when something is real, you cannot stop God!  No judgment from men can impair or influence the Judgment of God.  You would only be fighting God." (Public OLOE, July 13, 2008)

 

Our Lady's role in God's Plan is so misunderstood and underestimated, especially her role as a buffer to protect her children from the full effects of their sorrows and sufferings.  Our Lady explains this further:

 

"The sword that pierces your heart, remember that it pierced mine first; so your pain is softened because I first have taken the brunt of it.  As I carried my Son in His Passion, I also felt His pain to give Him the strength to persevere.  They rejected my Son and persecuted Him more than the world will ever know and realize and come to understand."  (Private OLOE, Feb. 18, 2006)  "The people were furious and wanted to kill Him.  They hated Him.  They thought He was "of" the devil. Yet, in His just righteousness He spoke the Truth.  The slander, the gossip, the calumny, the malice, the judgment and the rejection, most painful indeed!"   (Private OLOE, Mar. 14, 2008)

 

Sometimes we forget whose plan this is.  The Holy Trinity did not need humanity.  God the Father did not need the Blessed Virgin Mary.  Certainly, Our Lord Jesus Christ could have saved humanity from eternal damnation by some other more comfortable means.  However, the Father conceived this Plan, the Son obeyed His Father, and Our Lady is nothing but the "handmaid of the Lord."  God the Father, in His Words to the world, emphasizes her role in sharing in the suffering and rejection of not only her Son, but also all her children: 

 

"You think you bear insults from one another in humanity; but, children of humanity, perhaps you should look to this woman who first bears the brunt of all your pain, as she did for my most beloved Son….If you think His Heart was pierced, you had best look to this woman to see the large piercing that went first through her Heart and then through her Son's."   (GTF, March 8, 2006)

 

It is not only humanity's fear of rejection by their fellow man that is of concern, but also humanity's rejection of God's Word and His prophets, as well as the outright rejection of God's Love.  This is the rejection that we should be most afraid of.  Our Lady warns of that most dangerous rejection:

 

"If mankind continues to reject God's Love and block His assistance by closing their hearts, then God will allow the people to live in their own designs." (Public OLOE, Mar. 7, 1996)   "Every soul created by God returns to Him, unless that soul's free will rejects the Holy Spirit."  (Private OLOE, May 24, 2006)  "So many souls are hurting.  Each soul belongs to God, and the soul hurts because the core of the human being itself rejects the entry of God for its fulfillment.  The Holy Spirit must be welcome to change the inner being."  (Private OLOE, April 20, 2008)  "I desire all people to pray and to be close to God, but it is their free will and their rejection of God through their own desires that separate them and allow them more and more to sin."  (Private OLOE, April 21, 2007) "God is not vindictive, but human free will gets in the way and allows destruction, not only personally, but also to others.  Those, who do not desire God, have the opportunity through their rejection, not only to cause physical harm, but also interior turmoil."  (Private OLOE, April 19, 2007)

 

But whether we reject Our Lord or not, He assures us that He will not reject us:

 

"Come, all My loved ones.  I will not reject you!

 

I desire to fill you with strength and hope and to encourage you  to open your hearts to an intimate relationship….Simpleness of life and satisfaction in God's designs lend to the achievement of great heights in your sanctification…..Do not feel ashamed, unworthy or hopeless.  I will save you and protect you IF you allow Me….The decision is yours, for I have given you free will."  (JOM, Vol V, #23, Oct. 6, 1995)

 

Our Lady tells of Our Lord's persistence and presence even in the face of our rejection of Him, and she contrasts the effects of both a "yes" and a "no":

 

"Even if you reject Him and do not want Him by you, I assure you that He is there.  God is always by you because of His Love for you."  (Private OLOE, Sept. 20, 2007)   "God's Love is for all people.  People can reject His Love, but it is there always!"   (Private OLOE, Nov. 9, 2008)  "Every 'fiat' and every soul can change the world.  And yet, every doubt and every rejection, because of free will, can also change the world."  (Private OLOE, Feb. 2, 2008)

 

Jesus to the Disciples:

"Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul;

rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in Gehenna." 

(Mt 10:28)

 

 

 

Fear of Failure

 

"And so consider this from generation to generation,

that none who hope in Him shall fail."

(1 Mac 2:61)

 

St. Paul's Farewell Speech:

"Yet I consider life of no importance to me,

if only that I may finish my course and the ministry

that I received from the Lord, to bear witness to the Gospel of God's grace."

(Acts 20:24)

 

"To fail," in Webster's Dictionary, means to be deficient or negligent in an obligation, duty or expectation.  In the spiritual life, all would fail if it were not for God's grace.  Our Lord in His Lessons promises all  mankind:

 

"My people need to grow in Me, and I will give them strength and knowledge.  But with growth come imperfections and failures, which I allow to strengthen and mold My people into My perfection of holiness."  (JOM, Vol II, #42, Feb. 1, 1990)   "It means that through prayer and humility in accepting oneself in failure, each person is able to grow in holiness and reach the Kingdom through patience and the virtues dispensed by God."  (JOM, Vol V, #30, Nov 12, 1995)

 

 

The fear of failure may not be sinful in itself, but it is paralyzing, making it nearly impossible to grow in the spiritual life and to affect others according to God's Will.  Our Lady notes that sometimes we just have to wait on God and not worry about failure:

 

 

"Continue with all your heart to pray and to live a pure life.  Do the very best you can do.  Do not be afraid that you will fail.  Do not have fear at all.  Be strong and courageous.  Persevere with gratitude, and thank God….You have to wait for God's time.  You can try to do what you desire, but your battle will be with God.  So resign to His Will and wait on Him."  (Private OLOE, July 25, 2009)

 

"Success" and "failure" are human terms defining human categories.  Each one in its own way can give God great glory.  Our Lady explains:

 

"In this beauty and Love that God desires, in your humility, and in all your trials and failures, you can give God tremendous glory….It is not a matter of whether you fulfill His Will as much as it is your desire in the things you do during your day.  For many a saint have lost so many earthly possessions but gained tremendous glory by their simple "yes".  Even though God commissioned them to do tremendous works for the honor and glory of His Name, not all of them fulfilled that mission.  Yet, they received a reward according to their desire to glorify God."  (Private OLOE, Dec. 7, 2006)

 

It is not just our own free will that factors into the outcome of our good efforts, but often it is the free will of others that determines the outcomes.  Our Lady of Emmitsburg teaches her children how God balances the scales:

 

"You have an obligation to God, both morally and spiritually, to defend the Truth and to uphold what you have been commissioned to do.  When you have done your best, and even if all fails, then you are not held accountable for the actions of others."  (Private OLOE, Feb. 14, 2004)

 

Human weakness is something all mankind has in common.  Even our human weakness is used by God to give Him great glory and accomplish His Will.  Our Lady expands on the reality of human weakness and failure:

 

 

"In all of your human weaknesses, God allows you to be purged, invites you to grow and challenges you to be different in many ways….You shall never be sorrowful for your attempts.  Even though oftentimes you fail, you have not failed but have won favor in His sight."  (Private OLOE, Dec. 31, 2004) 

 

"Know that you are human; and in your humanness, even if you error, be at peace.  God only desires that you try and that you give everything to Him."  (Private OLOE, Jan. 10, 2009)  "In your humanness you may fail through sin, but you can be forgiven and try again."  (Private OLOE, Feb. 21, 2009) 

 

"Remember, God desires to heal you in many areas.  Do not be hard on yourself.  Do the best you can do, and remember that if you fail and if you have tried, through the Sacraments all is reconciled."  (Private OLOE, Aug. 30, 2009)  "When you fail and fall privy to sin, God in His loving way and forgiving grace, when you go before Him and give all of who you are and forgive yourself, then He raises you to a different level--like that of an ambassador or knight in a king's court."   (Private OLOE, Nov. 13, 2007) 

 

"So never forget how much you are loved by God!  In all your failures and weaknesses, you’re loved--loved as a newborn.  Never forget this."  (Private OLOE, May 10, 2008)

 

Sometimes it is difficult to watch another seemingly fail, especially if that person is a loved one.  There is, for some, a natural tendency to try to carry everyone else's burden; however, Our Lady suggests otherwise:

 

"There are many people who have desired things, but have lost their desire and have also failed in their approach; and now they are very angry because what they desired was not answered.  But you can neither take their place nor take the blame for them.  You cannot carry that burden; that belongs to them."  (Private OLOE, Nov. 2, 2004)

 

However, Our Lady, in a more intimate message to Gianna, shares how those personal failings can be put to good use when they are nourished and pruned with God's grace:

 

"I knew, when I invited you, how strong you were in the midst of all your idiosyncrasies.  I knew that you through God's grace could overcome all of your failings for one purpose--that purpose being the Truth, calling all to return to God!"  (Private OLOE, Sept 4, 2006)

 

Even though her children may give her many a reason to doubt their individual commitments, Our Lady has no doubt about the commitment of her Son:

 

"Little ones, Jesus will not fail you….Ask, and He will not fail you.  Give, and you will also receive….Then do not think about your weaknesses, but move ahead valiantly, knowing that you are surrounded by Love."  (Private OLOE, Nov. 23, 2004)

 

However, God's Love for humanity is not enough.  It does not prevent failure.  It does not ensure success or faithfulness.  God's gift of human free will is the wild card, and what is at stake is eternity. God the Father summarizes the state of the world and how mankind has responded, not just now, but throughout history:

 

"You misuse and abuse all that is given.  You rationalize.  You are not realistic.  You try and you fail, and then you ask for forgiveness, and I forgive.  What of those who do not ask for forgiveness and only can take and take and continue to take?…O' children of humanity, you have a choice.  You could receive; and the time you have to receive has been extended.  But in the situation at hand, so few really care.  Very few desire to receive….Treasure these words in your hearts and do not allow the flame to go out, for this is the only Light of wisdom and knowledge you may be receiving."  (GTF, June 21, 2009)

 

 

"The Lord is my helper, and I will not be afraid. 

What can anyone do to me?"

(Heb 13:6)