Jesus said to the Twelve: “Fear no one.”  Fear is a dreadful thing – isn’t it?  It paralyzes us from growing in the trust of God.  From growing in the promise and the hope that has made us beloved children of God.  It keeps us from the true happiness God desires to share with us.  It separates us from the love and the peace of God’s kingdom. The effects of fear are by no means pleasant. Yet, we knowingly allow fear to disrupt our lives and take away our inner peace. Fear causes our minds to constantly race with anxiety – always troubled, always worried, always anticipating a response or outcome that quite often never comes to pass. May never come to be. Yet, we remain petrified; imprisoned in our own minds – slaves to anxiety, fear, worry. Fear turns our insides out. It makes us dizzy, cold, anxious. It keeps us from truly being happy. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to feel so helpless, so vulnerable, so dependent, so needy. Who wants to feel like that?  Well, in the eyes of God – I do.  Holy Fear is that fear that keeps us from being separated from God; from his Holy Presence. It keeps us from being separated from the joy, and the peace, and light of salvation. This fear is good for us. Holy Fear is good fear that keeps us from sinning. It encourages us to follow the commandments, to embrace the beatitudes.  The kind of fear that causes us to be grateful, kind, merciful. The fear that inspires us to say, “I’m sorry,” “you’re welcome,” “I forgive you.” That good fear that encourages us to go to Mass, to celebrate the sacraments, to pray often and with deep devotion and true reverence.  The kind of fear that brings us to our knees because we know how much we are loved and there is nothing else to fear except being separated from God for all eternity.  How often we hear Jesus say to his disciples, “do not be afraid” and say to us, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith in God; have faith also in me.”  What then is there to fear if God is with us and we are with him?  So be helpless, be vulnerable, be dependent, be needy in the eyes of God for it is written, “Blessed the man who fears the Lord.”