Day 401: Aug 5. “Perfect love expels all fear”

We fear everything … I fear not fulfilling my dreams or purpose , I fear showing my old self, old attitudes, I fear cancer and a heart attack, I fear my kids won’t join me in heaven, I fear failure and success, economic instability and security, I fear of not fitting in. praise Jesus I don’t dwell on these anymore as I used to and many I have learned to let go. Jesus doesn’t use our fears to control us because he knows that’s a big part of our problem. While fear motivates us in the short term it doesn’t really change us.

My earliest memories of belonging to Christ came from being told who he was and I believed with the faith of a young child. Then when I was nine I was told if I didn’t recite the “sinner’s prayer” I would go to hell, so I did, out of fear. I used to fear God was watching me 24/7; there was always sin in my life.

 I didn’t like God much because I knew he didn’t like me, how could he. I could never measure up to biblical standards – so I stopped trying, stopped caring. The problem was I didn’t like Jesus much either, he always seemed so mean, and if you weren’t as perfect as him you were out of his club. So I lived my life loving God out of fear. I knew him intellectually, but I couldn’t know him at the heart level. How could I, he didn’t really love me, or so I thought.

Now I’m comforted in knowing his love is always with me. I once used fear to keep my behavior in line, now I don’t want to sin because I have something better. Who would want to disappoint the one we love? Even when I do I know he loves me.

I have to admit…I still fear bears!

Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.     1 John 4:18

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