Love Over Fear
…by Chuck Graham
One morning I and my beloved coffee climbed into the car and headed off. Immediately I was engulfed by fog so dense I saw nothing but a bit of road in front of me. Neighbors, family and friends were nearby, yet I felt utterly alone.
The days we live in have similar moments. No job, a broken marriage, sickness, loneliness, the latest virus. Wisps of worry bring a mist of anxiety. The mist grows into a dark cloud of fear that covers us. And we can’t see where to go.
We hear valiant cries to “choose faith over fear”. But how do we choose faith if we’ve lost the way? How do we know where to turn if we don’t hear the truth? How do we live if life doesn’t seem worth living? Here’s how.
What is your most important love?
In Revelation God told John to write a letter to the believers in Ephesus. 1 The message applauded their efforts, hard work and perseverance, but carried a warning. You have chosen to ignore your most important love. 2
Their most important love is the same as ours. The root word here is Agape…a willful choice to put another’s interest above our own. Agape is an unselfish, unconditional, and giving love, even to the point of great sacrifice.
Agape is God’s love for us—Jesus died in our place so we could have eternal life 3 , and should be our love for Him—loving God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength 4 . We also should have Agape love for each other and our neighbors. 5
Loving others is the answer to fear.
We can get so caught up with church, we fail to love The Church. We focus more on things-buildings, campuses, programs, services, technology-than people. It breaks my heart. I can’t imagine what it does to God’s.
So what does this have to do with that dark cloud of fear? Everything. For when darkness comes and the fog closes in…these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 6 There is no fear in love! 7
How can we find the way, hear the truth, and live a worthy life? How can we know love? By loving others. The Lord has come…to enable us to serve Him without fear. 8 To be filled with God’s love, we must give it away.
Chuck Graham is Founder and Executive Director of Ciloa, an international ministry devoted to sharing God’s encouragement and teaching how to encourage one another. Also an author and speaker, Chuck and his wife, Beverly, live in Lawrenceville, Georgia, USA. Learn more about Chuck and Ciloa at www.Ciloa.org .
Footnotes : (1) Read Revelation 2:1-7. (2) Read Revelation 2:4. (3) Read John 3:16. (4) Read Matthew 22:37. (5) Read John 13:34, Matthew 22:39. (6) Read 1 Corinthians 13:13. (7) Read 1 John 4:16-18. (2) Read Luke 1:68,74.
Pictures : Banner Photo: Sunrise over fog-filled valley, Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park, Southern Alps, New Zealand.