Living with Fear, Crocodiles, and Jaguars

Take the Hand that God Extends to Me

Living with Fear
Save from drowning © Canva

Father Antonio Ducay, priest and writer, offers this reflection on the adventure of living, of living with fear, and of discovering God in every success, failure, joy, and disappointment.

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Some time ago I read and my attention was caught by the adventure of someone who was flying calmly in his plane when the motor began to fail. Then it stopped and fell in Brazil’s jungle. The pilot was an expert in two things: in planning in emergency cases and in surviving in the jungle. He lived a 36-day adventure. The dangers were the crocodiles, the jaguars, and the night rains. He had never remembered God but there, where he was lost, he appealed to God and cried out from the bottom of his heart. He got an answer: “I am here!” Thanks to that he was saved, although it took 36 days. In an interview, he said that God was born for him in the jungle. He discovered Him there, and that he would not let Him go.

Each one of us can discover God in our life if we wish to, where there are also dangers of crocodiles and jaguars, although in different forms. To see our life as an adventure isn’t to fantasize, but to be realistic; the crocodiles and jaguars are the successes and failures, the joys and disappointments, high moods, and medium depressions. It’s our reality. Perhaps when we most need it we also cry out to God. Then He extends His hand to me. However, it depends on me. Do I cry out to Him now or leave it for later? It’s an essential question. It’s the question of my life. Do  I take the hand He extends to me or do I reject it?

I pass on to you the experience of others. It’s going to seem absurd to you. It’s to say “Thank you, I want you!” and Help me!” even if I don’t feel it. It might seem hypocrisy because this is the wrong moment, but it isn’t. It’s to take the hand that God extends to me. It’s an experience lived by many that has made them find a different life. One learns from others’ experiences.

Translation by Virginia M. Forrester