Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Fear of Our Enemies

The media is telling us that this is the blackest time for economic news EVER. Even more than Black Tuesday at the end of 1929? That's what they say.

In the collect for peace, we pray at Vespers:
O God, from whom all holy desires, all good counsels, and all just works do proceed, give unto Thy servants that peace which the world cannot give, that our hearts may be set to obey Thy commandments, and also that by Thee, we, being defended from the fear of our enemies, may pass our time in rest and quietness; through the merits of Jesus Christ , our Savior....

I have been finding it very interesting in the past months how the Church has prayed for centuries that God defends us from the fear of our enemies. We don't confess in this particular spot that God is delivering us from the enemies themselves (although ultimately He does do just that). It is not really the enemies that rob us of rest and quietness: it is the fear of our enemies that does us in.

This is not a Rooseveltian platitude. It is an acknowledgment that our fear IS an exhibition of our mistrust, and that our God is faithful to defend us even from the doubts and fears we wallow in.

Take they our life, goods, fame, child, and wife;
let these all be gone;
they yet have nothing won;
the kingdom ours remaineth!

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