“Nothing is more difficult, and therefore more precious, than to be able to decide.” ~ Napoleon Bonaparte
There is a story in the Bible about four men who suffered from leprosy, a slowly progressing, incurable skin disease. Because they were lepers these men were ostracized and separated from the rest of society. Furthermore, they had to wear mourning clothes, leave their hair disheveled, and keep their beards covered.
As they moved about the place those with leprosy had to cry out “Unclean, Unclean!” so that people could keep away from them. Any contact with a leper defiled the person who touched him. These four lepers were confined to the outskirts of the City of Samaria, away from its citizens. They could be seen standing outside the city gate, no doubt begging for something to eat.
During this time we are told, the city was under siege by an enemy army. The longevity of the situation had caused the city to experience a great famine. In fact, the city had been locked down for so long that people were resorting to selling their children for food. The lepers knew that their chances for survival were slim. They looked at their situation and knew that without food they would soon die.
Alternative 1 – There was no food in the city. Staying put meant eventual death by starvation.
Alternative 2 – The city was on lockdown. No one went in and no one could get out. Staying where they were, outside the city, was pointless. They would definitely starve to death there.
Alternative 3 – Go where they knew there was food in abundance. Take a chance on the Arameans having pity on them by throwing them a few scraps; it was certainly worth a try. The benefit far outweighed the risk. The worst that could happen was death.
“Once a decision is reached, act!” Dale Carnegie
This decision was not an easy one to make for the four lepers. The risks were high. Nevertheless, they weighed the alternatives, none of which were by any means palatable, and made a decision. They decided to take action despite their circumstances. It took a lot of courage, but their need for survival pushed them to face their fear of death.
“Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson.
When fear and doubt are in control, every situation that requires change will automatically trigger a flight or fight response. Fear does not know the difference between reality and perception, but you do. Your job is to look at what is in front of you and assess the situation. Think of all the possible outcomes before deciding whether to run or stay and fight. Remember, a decision will always be made, even if that decision to do nothing.
As for those four men, well, the story tells us that they did reach the enemy camp and to their surprise they found it deserted of people. Instead, they found food to eat, clothes to wear, and lots of other valuables. Their bold move set in motion a chain reaction that allowed them to have a good outcome. Now, its your turn to Kick Fear Now.