In a farm somewhere in Africa
…the old woman asked him to have a seat, the young man complied. Then she continued. Fear and faith are one- they are the very same thing. Wherever you find faith, fear is right there in the mix. It takes just a turn to realize this. When you are afraid, it is because you anticipate what may happen. Fear is not necessarily a bad thing. It can allow you to judge wisely in order to save yourself or prevent harm to others. However when it becomes paralyzing, immobilizing and demoralizing, then you have a bad case on your hand.
You came all the way here to ask me about fear and faith? Isn’t that something? I seldom get visitors here in the farm you know. Only those who work with me and nearby farmers are the people I see every day. ‘Tis amusingly strange that you, a city boy, would come to a farm for insight. How is my sister – your mother doing out there? I hear she longs for the tranquility of nature’s forests. My mother is not doing very well, Ayo responded… It seems to me that she would fare better if she moved out here with you. But that is part of the reason I came. The fear of scarcity has gripped the city like a vice, yet not many think of returning to the farms. You seem to enjoy peace and plenty here. What is the secret? SECRET! The old woman exclaimed bewildered. “There is no secret, you simply reap what you sow; well what you sow and nourish. There is no scarcity in nature.”
Look down yonder: that is my corn field. Harvest is next week. Do you think I can eat that much corn? The woman asked rhetorically. No, no, no, no. I keep some for food and storage against the planting season. I share some with friends. And the rest I gather and sell to city folks like you. They come here with big trucks and load up. I imagine you all pay handsomely for them. They pay us farmers a fair price and we are content. In your stores they sell or rot. It seems to me that you never learn out there. Can you not plant seeds in your city homes?
Fear as we were discussing is the attention you give to anything with the anticipation of the worst that can happen. Faith is exactly the same, except that you expect the best. It is faith because you are doing something in that expectation. We farmers sow seeds and nurture them. That is faith in action. We know that it will yield fruits. Hope is different, it has not action. Both faith and fear looks to a future time. However, they affect your state of mind in the present. Sowing seeds and putting in the persistent effort to ensure healthy growth demonstrates your trust that you will have your harvest, God forbid a flood happens. “I am learning so much from you ma’am” Ayo added. With that the old woman got up and said, it is getting dark, I must go look over my animal pen before I go to bed.