Padre’s Corner: Hope over fear

Padre Capt Paul Reimer, a ship’s team diver, is seen jumping from a CH-148 Cyclone helicopter.

Padre’s Corner: Hope over fear 

By Capt Paul Reimer,
Chaplain, HMCS Montréal 

Padre Capt Reimer is currently on a six-month deployment aboard His Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Montréal on Operation Horizon, Canada’s forward-presence mission to promote peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region. 

As ship’s team divers, there are many things that test us. For someone who grew up in the Prairies, the fear of open water is always something to consider while in the Navy. Perhaps for others, it’s jumping out of a helicopter from 30 feet above. One of the important words to consider while diving is fear. How do you handle fear? Is there something in our lives that we fear, and how are we shaped by this fear? These questions are not asked lightly, as for some of us this might be our most pressing question in life.  

Fear is closely related to time and our worldview. Our past, present and/or future can be something we fear. It could be the fear of what will happen at the end of the month, or during the big event that has taken weeks to plan. Time is a serious factor. The second factor is our worldview, or thoughts we have on a situation. The value we give to any circumstance or thing relies on our worldview. With these two factors in mind, how will we continuously develop our time and our worldview for the entity we fear the most? 

King David (907-837 BC), one of ancient Israel’s great kings, boldly wrote in Psalm 34:4 (ESV) that “I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears.” This is an incredible statement considering David wrote this after he was in the presence of his greatest enemies, with no place to turn for safety. The hope that arises from David’s words, by finding peace in the time he is given, and the calming of his thoughts in the situation, is inspiring.

Is there something or someone you look to for hope in fear? Hope can be a counterbalance to fear. What we have done in the past is part of us, but what we can change is the hope we have for the present and future moments. American civil rights activist and minister, Jesse Jackson, once said, “At the end of the day, we must go forward with hope and not backwards by fear and division.” Hope is forward searching, and sometimes we need help finding it. Perhaps that help can come from a family member, friend, co-worker, or your local chaplain? For those who are gripped by fear, there is support for you. So, my challenge and hope for you today is to face fear with a heart full of hope – I believe you will find the strength to conquer.