I used to love those "No Fear" T-shirts from back in the day. It would have been cool to have Scripture on some, but oh well. You know, there could have been Psalm 27:1 or 2 Timothy 1:7. But 1 John 4:18 is what is standing out to me today.
"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."
I am remembering a situation in which the Lord showed me a different side to this amazing verse, and I pray I never forget to see it from this perspective.
When you have the smallest glimpse of being loved perfectly, you begin to learn what John was writing about as far as fear of punishment is concerned. We are loved unconditionally.
Not based on performance.
Not based on appearance.
Not based on status.
The imperfect being loved by the perfect One just because of who He is. Wow.
But what I saw differently a few years ago was this: Loving another perfectly will send a certain kind of fear running!
Insecurity cannot remain in the same vicinity with you when you love another unconditionally.
I began to realize my struggle with insecurity when I was in my early 30's - not understanding until that point how much of a stronghold it actually had on my life. Then a situation occurred in which I felt led by the Lord to consciously give absolute unconditional love. No judgment. No stipulations. Just unconditional love and unlimited forgiveness.
I remember sensing so clearly how loving another with His love was affecting my mindset. I felt insecurity loosening its tight grip on me, and I felt the sweetest freedom!!
I don't have the degrees or letters after my name to go into the psychological explanations of this phenomenon, but think about it - when you are hard core focused on making sure that the people in your life are loved, you aren't as consumed with controlling how you are viewed and loved yourself.
You just love for the sake of loving...rather than for the sake of being loved in return.
There is truly no fear in perfect love. I dare you to love perfectly.
Father, please implant more of Your love in me to give. I don't want fear and insecurity to keep others in my life from experiencing Your love through me. In Jesus' Name.
1 John 4:18, Psalm 27:1, 2 Timothy 1:7