Apprehension, no matter where you are, can be a strange emotion. Apprehension is a notch or two above worry, but it feels like its twin.
THE SCENE IS FAMILIAR: a hospital lobby with all the expected surroundings . . . soft sofas and folded newspapers . . . matching carpets and drapes illumined by eerie lighting . . . a uniformed lady at the desk, weary from answering the same questions . . . strange smells . . . and lots of people.
Everywhere there are people. A steady stream pours in and out, the faces marked by hurry and worry. Surrounding me are small clusters of coffee-sipping groups talking quietly or staring into space, blinking often, lost in a world of their own anguish. Some sit alone, restlessly studying the same page of a paperback for ten minutes. A surgeon in faded green garb suddenly appears, bearing news to the waiting. Frowns cut in. Lips tighten. Heads shake. Tears flow. Soon it’s quiet again, increased apprehension mounts . . . and life goes on.
Apprehension, no matter where you are, can be a strange emotion. Apprehension is a notch or two above worry, but it feels like its twin. It isn’t strong enough to be fear, but neither is it mild enough to be funny. It’s in the category of a “mixed emotion.”
In some ways, apprehension leaves you crippled, immobile. It’s an undefined uneasiness—a feeling of uncertainty, misgiving, and unrest. What frustration is to yesterday, apprehension is to tomorrow.
The apostle Paul may have felt it when he set his face toward the heavy horizon over Jerusalem:
Now I am bound by the Spirit to go to Jerusalem. I don’t know what awaits me, except that the Holy Spirit tells me in city after city that jail and suffering lie ahead. But my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for finishing the work assigned me by the Lord Jesus—the work of telling others the Good News about the wonderful grace of God.
Paul absolutely refused to run when apprehension whistled at him.
Apprehension is impressive until determination that has been commissioned by the King of kings pulls rank on it and forces it to salute.