I admit it. I am not a fan of Halloween. I love October! I love fall weather, pumpkin spice, crunchy leaves, candy corn (yes, I like candy corn), but not Halloween. I am not against fun costumes and candy, but I do not like being afraid. I don’t like scary movies (never watch them), I don’t like death, violence or any type monster. I don’t like being afraid. Fear makes us jumpy, sweat, it’s hard to breathe when you are afraid. There are lots of physical and chemical reactions that happen in your body when you are afraid and I am not a fan of any of those feelings. I don’t even like surprise parties!
I don’t think I am completely alone in this thought. God is not a fan of fear either. There are 360 times the words “do not fear” are used in the Bible. It is usually said by an angel to human. I don’t know what it is about angels, but apparently when you see one face to face, you will become fearful. The angel told Zacharias “Do not be afraid” in Luke 1:13, and to Mary, “Do not be afraid” (Luke 1:30) to Joseph in Matthew 1:20 and to shepherds in Luke 2:10. Four times the words “Do not be afraid” were spoken by an angel and it was in regard to a baby.
We see the same thing every day in our Pregnancy Center. Clients come in and they are afraid. Afraid of the outcome of the pregnancy test, afraid of rejection or judgment, afraid of the life change that has happened, afraid of the future. It is in that moment that we wish we had the power of angels to say “Do not be afraid”- and it would be so. Unfortunately, it is not that easy. We won’t minimize a clients fears, we will understand because many of the advocates clients meet with have been in that same fearful place. The task is ours to meet the client in her fear and try to help her through the fear and into a place of peace, confidence and hope. It is not easy and we are not always successful. Fear has an amazing power to literally drive someone into danger (isn’t that theme of most horror movies?). Fear can make us choose an option we would never consider in a place of peace. Fear makes us panic and our thoughts are not rational or reasonable. Fear makes us think only about survival and about this moment, not the future.
The Client Advocates at the Bakersfield Pregnancy Center come along side fearful clients and try, with all our hearts, to bring her out of fear and into a place of safety and peace, so that she can make a clear and calm decision regarding her pregnancy.