Series 2 - Lesson 9 - Annotation 19
Why should children be taught to be fearless?
19. Children should be taught to be fearless because fear has an unnerving effect and temporarily renders ineffective the use of the mental faculties. If children are taught to be fearless they will not form mental images of anything that will harm them or that will produce the emotion of fear in their thoughts and feelings.
Therefore, not only children but adults also should always be free of fear for as children of God we are constantly going to meet our good. Fear shackles, hobbles, inhibits us, and holds us back from accepting our good. Fear has no rightful place in the human consciousness for it feeds the imagination with that which is not true. Of all the false imaging and harmful thinking that have been carried on in the mind, nothing has done as great harm as fear. The individual full of fear becomes a pitiable creature. Children trained in fear live unfulfilled lives until they are able to release themselves from it. "There is no fear in love: but perfect love casteth out fear" (I John 4:18).
The readily receptive and plastic consciousness of a child takes impressions quickly. These can remain in the consciousness all his life, producing results "after their kind" (Gen. 1:21). However, either good or bad impressions can be altered or replaced, but the longer they remain the deeper they cut their groove in the mind, with resultant stronger reproduction as time goes on. Fear held in the imagination often makes us lose the good we might have, because we fear to venture toward good undertakings.
In childhood the faculty of imagination is very active, but the faculty of judgment is not usually as well developed. The childish mind seizes, on whatever is offered it and knows not what to reject. We should be very careful what we tell children, or allow others to tell them, that might cause fearful images to become impressed on the subconscious. These fearful images can affect the whole life of the child until they are understood and their power denied.
Preceding Entry: How should all dreams be interpreted?
Following Entry: What relation does "beholding" bear to the work of transforming man?