PERFECT LOVE EXPELS ALL FEAR
We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the day of judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world. 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 4:16-18 NLT
Moving from fear to love is a huge transition. I remember the reason I became a follower of Christ--it was not love. I was a child, and I was afraid of going to hell. I understood that heaven was good, hell was bad, eternity was long, and the rapture could happen tonight (that was pretty much the simple theology we had at that point in time). I didn't want to go to hell, so I prayed the prayer and became a follower of Jesus. There were many more prayers and trips to an altar--most of them were motivated by fear. Fear of hell or fear of punishment for my sins. I lived with a lot of fear. My perspective of God was as a big Judge in the sky waiting for me to do something bad so He could sentence me to my deserving punishment. That view stifles self-confidence. My self-worth was based on my ability to be perfect. Then I blew it so big that I couldn't make up for my mistake. It was a big known mistake. No place to hide. That was then I experienced God's love. That was when I began to discover that God was love. God being love means I don't have to live in FEAR. The more we understand and accept God's love to more our self-confidence and self-worth grow. Have you moved from fear to love?
Lord Jesus thank you for demonstrating God's love by coming to earth to pay for my sins on Calvary. Thank you for making a way for me to live in love and not fear. Holy Spirit, please help me accept God's love and learn to live in the covering of God's love.
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