Since my last post, images of monks and priests praying in the middle of the unrest in Ukraine have circulated around the internet and captivated the world. So, I've been wondering to myself: Would I have the courage to do what they have done?
I don't know if I would have had the guts to stand in front of protestors with armed police pointing guns at my back. The only way I could stand there would be due to the result of prayer for strength, despite my fear. This anecdote from the Desert Fathers reminds us of the power of prayer, even during times of intense fear:
"A brother asked Theodore, 'If you suddenly hear the sound of falling masonry, are you frightened, abba?' He said, 'If the heavens fell down on the earth, Theodore would not be afraid.' For he had prayed to God that fear might be taken from him."
(From p. 61 of "The Desert Fathers: Sayings of the Early Christian Monks", translated by Benedicta Ward).