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, NIV)
Where God’s love is, there is no fear, because God’s perfect love takes away fear. It is His punishment that makes a person fear. So His love is not made perfect in the one who has fear. – (1 John 4:18, ERV)
Love will never invoke fear. Perfect love expels fear, particularly the fear of punishment. The one who fears punishment has not been completed through love. – (1 John 4:18, VOICE)
Yesterday, as I had two different appointments with two different specialists, I recognized that those who seem to genuinely care for their patients, set them at ease, while those who are fixated on a task, do not. Last week, I had an appointment with a specialist who was very intentional to talk with me, not at me. I felt seen and heard, and genuinely cared for and confident in her care. Yesterday, I met with a second such specialist for a second opinion, as to the course of my continued care. This physician talked at me, not to me, and did not do anything except make me feel a bit anxious. Thankfully, I have the flexibility to choose, as double insurance provides me that luxury. Between these and other appointments over the last week or so, I am reminded of what it is to love in such a way that there is no room for fear. Approach and demeanor are ways to demonstrate love, and being seen and heard send fear fleeing. This carries over into every interaction we have with others. We can either set their hearts at ease, or we can be all business and keep love out of the interaction. After my own experiences, I am reminded anew of the importance of demonstrating love in all things. It does not mean I need to be all gushy or overly emotional, but it does mean that in all things, I ought to be kind and attentive, and listen purposefully. God is good, and He shows us over and over again how much He loves us as He provides goodness and kindness all around us. May we ever seek the Lord to show and grow in us His perfect love so that we can ease fears in others as we all navigate this life together.
There’s no room for fear,
Where love is intact;
Through each word and act.
Love is an action,
That sees, hears and knows;
It gives God’s goodness,
As His heart is shown.
God uses people,
To let His light shine;
God’s loving design.
Let’s choose give kindness,
In all that we do;
May His love lead us,
In goodness and truth.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You show us the truth of Your goodness and love through experiences throughout each day. Thank You that Your love and provision is made abundantly clear through the kindness and care of others. Forgive us for the times that we have not extended love, listening and kindness to help others feel cared for well. Teach us to slow down and listen to Your leading so that we may love as You love us. Show us how to be Your hands, heart and voice to those we encounter, so that they too, might know the goodness and comfort found in Your perfect love. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we seek You to lead us in Your perfect love in all that we say and do. Amen.
© Shannon Elizabeth Grabrick and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present
Even if I walk through a valley as dark as the grave, I will not be afraid of any danger, because You are with me… – Psalm 23:4a