“But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings.” Malachi 4:2 ESV
“I will make an everlasting covenant with them: I will never stop doing good to them, and I will inspire them to fear me, so that they will never turn away from me.” Jeremiah 32:40 NIV
The one side or face of fear can manifest itself in so many ways. Many people fear loneliness, change, sickness, danger, failure. Others dread death, financial strain, conflict, and that which we do not understand. Fear takes on various shapes for each one of us, but the fear that cuts most deeply for me is the fear of rejection and criticism. I lived within that veil of fear for most of my life. Last January, I made a heartbreaking decision to step away from family who kept me in that unsafe place, who stood in direct opposition to the Lord’s plan and purpose for my life, and who lodged me in fear. The ripple effect of my decision followed like a car careening out of control over a cliff.
I questioned myself, guilt overcame me, and I took it out on God. Well, I kept falling for some time, and then He saved me. He saves. Always. He drove out the fear. That’s what He does. He is for us! In whom shall we fear? He loves and He saves each and every time we trust and believe and call out to Him. Our Savior. He is the other side of the coin we call fear. We are called to fear Him, not as we fear disease or disaster, but as worshippers of all that is good and pure–He who is LOVE. We are to revel and delight in Him in reverence, respect and awe. That is what we can call righteous fear. And when we do, we have nothing on Earth to fear. He is far more powerful than any fear we can conjure. Why do we place our worldly anguish in such high regard and ultimately above He who is the highest of all? I have heard it said that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Love is its completion, and this completion is Jesus. The dichotomy we face is how to fear God while He extinguishes it for us. The decision is not always simple nor is it easy, but His Word remains steady and unchanging. The answer is there if we seek it, surrender to it, and trust it. Never fear.
Prayer: Beloved Savior, take my hand and guide me on the path to wisdom. In this place, may I exalt you with righteous fear and trust you deeply to extinguish all the worldly fears that separate me from you. Draw me close and never let me go. In Your precious and Holy name, Amen.