Sunday, December 15, 2013

I heard a Christian brother, oh,  it must be over 25 years ago now, describe fear as:
 False                                    Evidence                        Appearing                      Real

Over the intervening years, I’ve not only quoted that a great many times in a great many situations, but I’ve also spent a great deal of time contemplating it.  Yes,  considering it in depth, turning it over and over in my mind, looking at it from the outside in, looking from the inside out, from the top, on its surface; even pulling each word aside to examine them individually and as a whole as fully as I am able; praying about it, seeking wisdom from God about it and even putting it away for one season and another, allowing it to marinade inside my heart.

25 years.  Years filled with times and mere moments of great faith.  Years filled with times and circumstances of great fear.  Years filled with activity and movement and joy and pain and sadness and gladness and new friends and old friends and fair weather friends and deeply loyal, loving friends.  Years.  Not moments or seconds or even hours or days.  YEARS!

Here then is the conclusion I have come to, after giving this little homily time to stew and settle in my heart.

(Do you know what a homily is?  I wasn’t sure either, so I looked it up for us, so we could learn something together.  It means a religious discourse that is intended primarily for spiritual edification rather than doctrinal instruction; a sermon.) 

On this little religious discourse I concluded;

THIS IS A TRUE SAYING.

Yup.  That’s my big conclusion.  I never have been one to accept things at face value.  I’ve always needed to analyze and think things through for myself.  On this one, I’ve decided the Christian brother was 100% correct.

EX….CEPT.

Except this one little part…..where this little saying is 100% WRONG.

See, I also thought these thoughts about this little homily. 

Fear of this world, when Jesus told us fear not, for He overcame the world, fear of the devil when Jesus is your Savior, fear of what man can do to you up held against the God who is for you, fear is false evidence that appears real to us.

BUT……

Fear of the Lord is NEVER false evidence.  Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.  A healthy fear of God can bring you to your knees in repentance which leads to forgiveness which leads to a right and healthy relationship with God your Creator.  Reverent fear of God can keep you from committing sin, which is a wonderful thing that brings blessing and joy and GOOD into your life!

Considering fear then, leaves us with two choices.  One is a way that leads to hardness of heart, cynicism, doubt, mistrust, waste and sickness of mind and heart. 


The other choice?  Reverent fear of the Lord God, Creator and Master of the universe, Sovereign in all His ways, leads to the way of life and LIFE ETERNAL!

We all have fear in our lives.  A godly fear can do a lot of good to overcome other fear.  What fear are you struggling with?  How can they be overcome?
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