1 Maccabees, Chapter 16, Verse 6
John and his people took their position against the enemy. Seeing that his people were afraid to cross the wadi, John crossed first. When his men saw this, they crossed over after him.
The narrative is nearing its end. Simon, the last of the Maccabean brothers to rule over the Jewish people, is getting too old to lead the troops into battle. He passes on the military leadership to his sons Judas and John, who like a true leader leads from the front. He is the first to step into danger.
Fear binds us
When we enter into the presence of God and start to sense that huge reservoir of fear in us, we want to run away into the many distractions that our busy world offers abundantly.
But we should not be afraid of our fears. We can confront them, give words to them, cry out to God, and lead our fears into the presence of the One who says: “Don’t be afraid, it is I.”
(Henri Nouwen, Spiritual Direction, 58)
Hope is to each of us what sunshine is to a garden.