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  • Catherine Dolan

Fear and Faith Cannot and Do Not Share the Same Space

When my youngest daughter was a student at Appalachian State University, a great school nestled in the North Carolina mountains, I was able to enjoy a good deal of  quality time with her. My long-term love’s family had a home in Boone, and so we traveled there for long weekends often. To add to that, I covered Boone as part of my work sales territory for two of her college years.


Because of that time together, she and I developed a wonderful Friday afternoon, mother-daughter routine.  After I finished my workday and she finished her classes, we would meet at our favorite lunch spot. We put our phones away. We connected face-to-face. We shared updates on our lives with each other. We shared joy in those afternoons together.


One of those days about three years ago, we were sitting at our lunch spot eating our favorite vegan tamales. We were chatting about an upcoming trip she was preparing to take to a third world country with a campus organization that did volunteer trips over spring break each year. I expressed some fears  about her travels and her safety.


In that moment – in my fear, really – she reminded me of a mantra I taught her well.


“Mom,” she said. “Remember what you taught me? Faith and fear cannot and do not share the same space.”


I was thrilled. She was listening.


She continued – “I refuse to give in to fear, and I will not live my life from a place of fear. If something bad happens, I died living my life and doing what I am passionate about doing. And I am okay with that.”


Gah. My own words coming right back to me. My heart was overwhelmed with joy in that moment. She had not only heard me, but also understood the power of staying in a place of faith for herself.


In that moment, my 19-year-old daughter became one of my most powerful teachers.

I know faith is the only way to true peace and love. I know faith and fear cannot and do not share the same space… ever. Sometimes we need to be reminded of that though. That day – she reminded me. To this day, when I catch myself slipping into fear or self-doubt or lacking courage or strength, I remember that conversation.


Recently, as I was struggling with a sense of personal disconnect; consequently, I felt like I was spiraling out of love far too quickly. And I was spiraling into places of fear. Then, the book, A Course In Miracles, found me.  The book appeared in my path for a reason, I know; that reason continues to unfold for me. Though I am only 150 pages into the 600-page book, I have felt a shift already.


How? It’s simple, really.  The book’s message is simple – and powerful.


Only love is real. Anything that is not love is not real.


Our parents – and the world, at that – teach us to stay safe from harm; to self-protect.  As a result we develop a protector – or ego – which is the creator of fear. The truth of it is this: Ego is man-made; ego is not of God; ego separates us from God. Therefore, fear is nothing more than separation from God’s love; that love is innately ours if and when we choose to accept it and live it.


Today, June 26, 2018 is my 51st birthday. How apropos this blog as it aligns with my personal mantra –  faith and fear cannot and do not share the same space. Make a choice consciously this week to know God or whatever higher power you believe in is alive and well. Live into His love every, single day. That kind of faith will keep you in a place of love. Fear is sneaky. It’s everything and everywhere we allow it be. When you see it or feel it this week, don’t give it power; call it out and tell it to go away. Trust. Choose faith.


Live in love. The choice is yours – and yours alone.


That’s my not so sexy truth.




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