By Synthia Esther
At first glance *Homer and Langley Collyer appeared to be respectable and well off young bachelors. They lived in a mansion inherited from their parents on New York's Fifth Avenue. Little by little the brothers gradually withdrew from the world. Seemingly plagued by fear, which developed into a phobia for one or both of the brothers. Which made human contact impossible to face. They barricaded the doors and windows. And accumulated piles of junk that filled the entire house. Bills were left unpaid. Without water and electricity, they cooked with kerosene and fetched water from a nearby park. The juck within their home was packed so densley by the mid 1940's that Langley had to creep through narrow tunnels to take food to his now invalid brother.
In their sixties both brothers were severley terrified of burglars. Langley set booby traps made to send debris down on the heads of such intruders. Acting on a tip about a possible death in the house, police investigated in March 1947. They had to work for hours just to ge inside the home. Once in, they discovered Homer's emaciated corpse, but could not find Langley. After weeks of searching the 140 tons of junk and debris, which included ancient toys, tree timbs, a car chassis, and 14 grand pianos they uncovered Langley's crushed body. The police concluded that Langley had sprung one of his own booby traps, which left Homer alone to starve to death. Homer and Langley had no peace, due to the fear that was deeply ingrained into their hearts and minds. It would appear that they did not know or rely on God or His word. For God is not a God of disorder but of peace (1st Corinthians 14:33).
FEAR AND PHOBIA DEFINED:
To be affraid or feel anxious or apprehensive about a possilbe or probable situation or event. Whereas a phobia is an anxiety disorder that is shown to include an extreme and irrational fear of simple things or social situations. God's word tells us; "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus," (Philippians 4:6-7).
HOW TO COMBAT FEAR
To combat fear we must learn to trust in Jesus, leaning on His word. For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but of power and of love, calm, with a well-balanced mind, discipline and self-control (2nd Timothy 1:7). Those in Christ need not be afraid of evil tidings, as our heart is firmly fixed, trusting and leaning on the Lord, in which we are secure (Psalm 112:7-8). "For there is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because He first loved us," (1st John 4:1819). By trusting in Jesus we know, "even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for God is with me," (Psalm 23). And we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us (Romans 8:37).
* Readers Digest, "ABC's of the Human Mind - A Family Answer Book," Readers Digest Association, Inc.
Copyright 2010, Synthia Esther. All Rights Reserved.