Happy New Year!

There is no fear in love,

but perfect love casts out fear. 

For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 

We love because he first loved us.

 I John 4:18-19

 

Dear Friend,

I’m sharing this scripture because it has had such a profound impact on my life.  In December of 2009, I found out I was pregnant with my third child.  As I prepared for her birth, I was drawn to this scripture.  I memorized this passage and focused on it during the labor and delivery.  I sensed the Lord asking me to give him my fears about the pain of childbirth as he called me to have this child at a birthing center without anesthesia.  Previously, I had a crippling fear of the pain of childbirth and the Lord was leading me to trust him for my confidence and strength.  

Since that time, I have often found myself reflecting on this passage and this year, deeper revelation of this scripture has brought even greater meaning. As I have grown in my understanding of the Bible through the Life Model curriculum, I am brought into a new clarity of what it means to walk without fear.  While I have not attained this goal of living fearlessly, I am growing in the experience of walking with Immanuel in a way that brings peace in all circumstances. 

A couple of years ago, in one of his teachings, Dr. Wilder mentioned that God does not want to necessarily “empower” us, but that His spirit in us makes us “unintimidateable”.  This means that we are not emboldened by God’s spirit because of our own strength, but that when we walk in God’s spirit, we have no fear. What if we could walk so closely with God that all of our fears were calmed?  What if the inconceivable occurs and our hearts stay in a place of safely trusting him?  What if…moment by moment…the active presence of God is so palpable in our daily experience that our responses in all circumstances look like the fruit of His Spirit?

I pray for all of us that we would be so connected to the Lord that we would feel a deep peace guiding each moment…that God’s peace would permeate our lives in such a way that we walk in more grace for others, ability to see the big picture of life and courage and creativity to live out our unique purpose on the earth.

Many blessings and much love,

Monica

 

 

There is no fear in love,

but perfect love casts out fear. 

 

We don’t have fear when we are truly connected to God’s love.  Because his love is perfect, it actually removes fear from our lives.  We can experience peace in the midst of intense situations because we see our situation through the lens of His love.  We can then gain an eternal perspective.  We have hope in all circumstances knowing that His plan for us is good and that He can be trusted.  

 

For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 

 

When fear is our lens, we have the sense that God or the situation is punishing us.  If we have fear, we know that there is opportunity to know God and walk with God more because he can be known in such a way that we are “perfected” in His love.  Recognizing our fears, gives us a gauge for the need to press into practicing God’s presence…not denying the difficulty of the situation, but experiencing a deeper attachment to God so that we can rest in His love and His perfect plan.  The world is full of suffering, yet God’s love brings comfort in all circumstances.

 

We love because he first loved us.

 

This portion of the scripture speaks to the idea that we must first receive in order to be able to give.  Its only because He loves us that we are able to love him.  He models this love to us. We respond to His love because we have had this model and because His love is so full of grace that we want to love him back.  This verse brings the idea of being perfected in love into perspective.  We are so honored to be an object of God’s love.  This life is all about experiencing His love and learning to give our fears to Him so we can walk in the fullness of confidence as His beloved child….unintimidateable, embracing ourselves and others even in our weaknesses, growing in strength and wisdom to walk out our destinies and having hope in every circumstance that He will be with us and bring joy and peace…until we see Him face to face.

  I John 4:18-19



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