“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. We love Him because He first loved us.” (1 John 4:17-19, NKJV)
In 1998 the leader of a prayer group that I attended began sharing with us about the love of God, agape. While I had already learned about His great love for me in that Jesus died on the cross for me while I was still a sinner, what this prayer group leader began sharing with us went even deeper still. I wish I could share it all here and now, and I will delve deeper in future posts as I have in past posts, today I mention this because of a recent experience I had that proved to be life-changing.
I have lived in Texas all my life. My husband and I are on our 5th Texas home, all lovely, all great homes, but each led us closer to our home with a little land which I have always wanted. In all the homes that I have lived in, I have never lived in an area as windy as where we live now. When we see a storm rolling in, often we grab our dogs and quickly run indoors because the wind can pick up fast and crazy in no time flat.
After 2.5 years here we’ve learned to move a smallish metal outdoor table and chairs away from one of the patio windows when we see a storm brewing. The wind has knocked the table and chairs into one of the patio windows in the past and into the yard during several storms. So when we see a storm coming we move them into the yard around the corner from the windows.
A few months ago I saw another storm brewing and the winding picking up. I went outside to move the table and chairs. I picked up the first chair and found myself suddenly in the yard with the chair flying out of my hands and blowing across the yard. It took me by surprise and I thought, “That was kind of weird.” I returned to the patio and picked up the metal table and once again, I suddenly found myself in the yard. The wind had blown me off the patio and the table was now blowing across the yard. My thoughts were, “Wow, that was very weird.” I returned for the second chair. The same scenario repeated with me blown into the yard and the chair blowing end upon end across the yard. I then turned to go indoors and had to literally fight the wind to make it back onto the patio. When I finally made it in the back door, I had to use my full body weight leaning against the door to be able to close it against the extreme wind. Once again I thought, “Wow, that was crazy weird!”
The next day I saw a weather report for our area. The meteorologist said that either a weak tornado or straight line winds had hit our area the day before. So that’s what that was.
Over the next week I often found these words rolling through my thoughts, “weak tornado”. It popped up into my mind so many times, that I finally thought to ask God, “Is there something that You want to tell me about that?” And He did.
He said to me, “Do you want to know why that tornado was weak?”
Me: “Yes, of course Lord.”
God: “It was weak because you did not fear it.”
Then these words were began rolling through my thoughts over the next few days. “It was weak because I did not fear it? I did not ’empower’ the tornado with fear?”
The account from Mark 4 of Jesus and His disciples encountering a storm while out in a boat came to mind.
“And a great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that it was already filling. But He was in the stern, asleep on a pillow. And they awoke Him and said to Him, ‘Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?’ Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, ‘Peace, be still!’ And the wind ceased and there was a great calm. But He said to them. ‘Why are you so fearful?…” (Mark 4:37-40, NKJV)
What are you afraid of today? There are many powers that be these days that are stoking the flames of fear all around us. What are you empowering, who are you empowering with fear?
Since this experience I have found God’s words comforting and I have found myself living a life of greater love and a life free of fear.
God’s love does cast out all fear. If you find yourself afraid, draw near to God and learn of His love. It is unconditional. It is patient and kind. It is POWERFUL!
“Go after a life of love as if your life depended on it–because it does….” (1 Corinthians 14:1, MSG)
“Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10, NKJV)