Fear NOT

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Westminster Cathedral London

Although it is not always a good idea to take verses out of context there is definitely a thread that runs through God’s word that fear can act as a blockage to God’s work in us. Time and time again we are told not to fear if we are a son or daughter of God. It causes a bottleneck or even acts as a stopper to God’s work in us.

But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. Luke 1.30

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1John 4:18

The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. Romans 8: 15

“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
    I have summoned you by name; you are mine. Isaiah 43 : 1

God is our refuge and strength,
    an ever-present help in trouble.
 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
    and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
 though its waters roar and foam
    and the mountains quake with their surging Psalm 46: 1-3

Our Lord’s own words:

 Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God.  Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Luke 12: 6 – 7

 

Copy of DSCN2569
 From The Friars, Maidstone, Kent, England

 But how do we turn our back on fear? That seems easier said than done.  As always, we do not do it in our own strength because anything we try to do in our strength will never be enough. It is like trying to run  a marathon with a broken leg! The answer is always a gift of God’s grace through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone?  Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?  If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! Matthew 7: 9-11

But how do we receive this help? It isn’t a question of asking and asking. God already knows the desires of our heart. He says we ‘rest’ in Him and ‘remain’ in Him – then he can do his work.

Let the beloved of the Lord rest secure in him,
    for he shields him all day long,
    and the one the Lord loves rests between his shoulders. Deuteronomy 33:12

Then He can work in and on us because we also begin to glimpse the desires of God’s heart so we are able to ask for those things that please him and are good for us. And, of course, resting in the Lord is the opposite of fear!

I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.  If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.  If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.  This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.   John 15 5-9

 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them.John 15:6

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