Real or Fantasy?

“I’ve lived through some terrible things in my life, some of which actually happened.”

― Mark Twain

I love that quote. It reminds me of the vivid imagination I have that can turn to darkness in the blink of an eye if I am not vigilant to control it by the power of the Spirit. This report from the Huff Post (formerly The Huffington Post) upholds Twain’s wisdom.

“Five hundred years ago, Michel de Montaigne said: “My life has been filled with terrible misfortune; most of which never happened.” Now there’s a study that proves it. This study looked into how many of our imagined calamities never materialize. In this study, subjects were asked to write down their worries over an extended period of time and then identify which of their imagined misfortunes did not actually happen. Lo and behold, it turns out that 85 percent of what subjects worried about never happened, and with the 15 percent that did happen, 79 percent of subjects discovered either they could handle the difficulty better than expected, or the difficulty taught them a lesson worth learning. This means that 97 percent of what you worry over is not much more than a fearful mind punishing you with exaggerations and misperceptions.”

Here is a short poem about the same topic.

Fears Lodge in Our Familiar Places ©2014 Molly Lin Dutina

The black mark on the tree 
is curved, and stark.
It cuts a gash through
solid wood of a twenty-two inch trunk.

Closer inspection reveals it is
but the shadow of a spindly
dead trunk made stark
by bright sun.

The fears we anticipate seem
larger than the reality of life.
How many really come to fruition?

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.

John 14:27

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