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. – 1 John 4:18
I broke down this morning. For the first time in a long time, I just cried over a deeper issue and weight that is on my heart and shoulders.
A couple of specific ones this time.
I have this insane fear of making decisions. I also fear failure.
Yes, I fear… decisions. It is not just a fear of making bad decisions. It is making ANY decision on my own, good or bad. I fear the independence of decision-making. I fear the consequences of my decision and action, good and bad. I fear the shame or guilt that comes with a not-so-good decision. The shame and guilt I put on myself, and the shame and guilt I feel from others. I fear the jealousy of others from a good decision. I fear the effects that others have on me with a good decision. I fear that such a decision would make someone else feel bad about themselves. I HATE when people feel bad. But I also fear people using that good decision to their own advantage. I fear getting the attention of a good decision.
I broke down this morning as a result of a decision (that dreaded fear)… but on top of that decision, it also created a failure. I had stepped out to accomplish something on my own and it turned around to haunt me instead and altered the course of other things creating a cascade of disaster. I was overwhelmed with guilt and shame to the point the only outlet that would relieve some pressure were hot tears and verbal expressions (and also, I confess, even a cuss word… “hell”).
I was reminded of the verse above just shortly there after (and right after that I started writing this blog).
Why do I fear? Why do I fear making decisions?
Why the heck do I hold onto such heavy chains and gripping demonic (not of Christ) hang ups in my life?
I recognize this… I do not know and rely on God’s love, or believe that because of what Christ did on the Cross for me – I am like Jesus… I don’t believe it. Let me confess right now, looking at my heart, spirit, and flesh in the mirror and say that in the raw honest phrase. I don’t believe it and I am not relying on God.
That’s quite a confession. Most people don’t know how to take such a raw statement. They’ll likely jump to want to reassure through words and help to try to soften the blow of what my heart is feeling or say I’m being too hard on myself (“everybody doubts, it’s ok” – but that’s not what I’m talking about). Honesty, it’s not what I need either. God knows what I need and I’m supposed to get to this raw place. I spend my whole life trying to put up a facade that I believe truths from the Lord. Yet, God sees straight through me… He knows my heart, and He exposes it so that I can break down before Him in true repentance.
So what I believe now, is this… God is starting a work in my heart deeper than I can see or fathom at the moment. Changing it to where I know and rely on the love HE has for me (not the love I think I have for Him). To believe that He is love, that all guilt and shame are washed away in the power and grace of the Cross and blood of Christ. That because of Jesus’ death and resurrection and life He deposits in me… in this world, I can be like Him and His love is made complete among us. That fear are lies straight from hell and that because of His perfect love for me, those fears are driven out. Fear has to do with punishment, but God can make me perfect in love even by the grace He’s poured out to me. Then I can love because He first loved me.
Do I believe all of that yet? No. Will I? By the grace of God and His work in me, I do believe I will.
The one independent decision that I have never felt guilt, shame or regret over… a decision I have never been afraid of the consequences, good or bad… was the independent decision to give Jesus Christ my heart and life. So I know without a doubt that it was the correct and truest decision I could have ever made. As a result… no other decisions matter except if they line up with that one and with Him. So why do I fear? God is calling me deeper and telling me to fear no more…
Go with God, be at peace, fillet your heart before Him and stop pretending. I’m done with pretend.
And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.
God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. 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.
We love because he first loved us.
– 1 John 4:16-19