Faith over Fear

  • Published
  • By Chaplain Jasmin Luck
  • 944th Fighter Wing

Three years ago, I went through an experience that would impact my faith and perspective to this very day. I was a chaplain candidate, excited to complete my first training assignment overseas. During our weekly staff meeting, everyone’s phones started ringing and buzzing from an influx of notifications. The noises became so significant that we had to stop and investigate what was causing the interruption. We learned that an enemy nation was threatening our region, and I felt my heart drop instantly. My standard active duty tour turned into a time where our chapel services became more instrumental than ever. 

The next day, I decided to visit the flight line to see how everyone handled the news. I crossed paths with a pilot who gave me some insight into his viewpointHe had so much peace and contentment that I asked what he relied on in these situations. The pilot told me, “I have to decide on a daily basis to choose faith over fear.” Those words stuck with me as a chaplain candidate. I often find myself reflecting on them as a chaplain navigating through the COVID-19 pandemic. My encouragement to anyone feeling overwhelmed is to choose faith. Whether that is faith in our resolve to bounce back from difficulties, in our training and expertise, or in a higher power, this is a conscious decision all of us can make.  

2020 tested our resilience and dedication to the mission. We balanced the uncertainty of the future with the certainty we have in our readiness. After a challenging year, some are scavenging through the remnants, searching for hope. A theory in psychology called post-traumatic growth describes the positive change that occurs after battling a major life crisis. Growth can occur through mindful mediation, gratitude, and seeking out counselors and helping agencies to assist in reframing negative events. No matter what form of trauma someone endures in their life, they can be encouraged knowing that there is a chance for growth. 

Our pain can be vectored toward a greater purpose. The pilot who encouraged me left a more significant impact than he realized. After our conversation, I walked away feeling motivated to uplift those around me. Today, I still find strength in his words. You can be a similar source of courage for your wingmen, who may be facing hardships they are not expressing. We can all see growth during our trials and grief if we choose faith over fear.