Go get your daddy

1 John 4:18 (KJV) There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.

This Sunday we had a guest speaker at our church and he ministered on anxiety being the start of fear. In my personal studies I have been reading on the root of rejection, which in turn happens to be rooted in fear. I loved how he brought out this verse in particular, Proverbs 12:25 (AMP) Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down, But a good (encouraging) word makes it glad. In the King James Version it says the it will make our heart stoop. When I become anxious my chest will become heavy and the first thing I do is start to breath different. My husband will often ask, “Why you breathing so heavy?” Of which I cannot answer because in that state I do not make any sense.

1 Peter 4:7 (AMP) The end and culmination of all things is near. Therefore, be sound-minded and self-controlled for the purpose of prayer [staying balanced and focused on the things of God so that your communication will be clear, reasonable, specific and pleasing to Him.]

All I can do at that moment is just pray in the Holy Spirit. What brings on anxiety? For me, it is when things happen that I was not prepared for. It could be a change in plans. My biggest one is questions that I was not prepared to answer and they expect me to know the answer when they ask the question. Or so I think. If I have to reply that I do not know, I feel like I have let them down. It’s a perfection mechanism that I put in place so that I would not be rejected, but really it is a bad one.

So why did 1 John 4:18 hit me a little different this Sunday? I mean, I do not hate anyone.

Saturday we held a yard sale, at our home, to get rid of some inventory that has been piling up in my husbands online store. A woman walked up with her grandson and he wanted to look at the Skylanders we had for sale. She asked if they could remove the ones from the bundles, because he had some of them already and she did not want to buy them again just because they were bundled. I explained to her that this was inventory from our online store and there was a lot of research done to create the bundles by my husband and that I could not remove them from the bundles. She scowled and replied, “So you can unbundle them, you just don’t want to.” I looked at my youngest and told him, “Go get your daddy.” My husband came up and she explained what she wanted, he told her he would work with her. When he tried to leave, I looked him in the eyes and said “Stay.” They left with over seventy dollars of Skylanders from us and the little boy left happy.

She exposed a part of my love walk that needs to be perfected. So when I heard perfect love casts out fear, anxiety is the root of fear, the root of rejection is fear…oh, Amanda, you have not conquered fear. How can I get to perfect love? I do not know if I will ever get there, but one thing I do know is that I am making progress. Then I remember the words of Paul in Philippians 3:12-15 (AMP), Not that I have already obtained it [this goal of being Christlike] or have already been made perfect, but I actively press on so that I may take hold of that [perfection] for which Christ Jesus took hold of me and made me His own. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider that I have made it my own yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the [heavenly] prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.  All of us who are mature [pursuing spiritual perfection] should have this attitude. And if in any respect you have a different attitude, that too God will make clear to you.

I may not achieve perfection in my love walk here, but that does not mean that I do not need to keep pressing towards the goal. My prize with be waiting for me in heaven where I want to hear “well done good and faithful servant.”

How does anxiety show its signs in you? How do you deal with anxiety? I would love to hear from you and pray with you. Please contact me at amanda@desiringformore.org.

Peace, Love and Jesus

1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives our fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

As I read the first four books of the New Testament I saw a theme on what Jesus taught the disciples. He taught them about love and having faith. Peach and love go hand in hand. You cannot have faith and not love, and you cannot have peace without faith.

Lisa Bevere in Without Rival states: Fear is costly. It will steal your thoughts, your dreams, your relationships, your finances, your faith and your hope. Love is constant, it is supremely generous. It seeks to restore your relationships, your dreams and your hopes.

Let’s look at 1 Corinthians 13, you know the verse we quote at each other when we talk about the love walk. Let us do a little something different. Let us replace love with fear.

Fear is impatient and unkind while it envies and boasts; it is arrogant and rude. Fear insists on it’s own way; it is irritable and resentful; rejoices in wrong doing, rather than in truth. Fear bears nothing, believes nothing, hopes nothing, endures nothing. Fear will end.

When I inserted fear here, I saw some attributes of my self that I did not like. So I started saying this over myself daily:

Amanda is patient (suffers long). Amanda is kind. Amanda does not envy. Amanda does not boast (or parade herself). Amanda is not proud (puffed up). Amanda does not dishonor others (behave rudely). Amanda is not self seeking. Amanda is not easily angered (provoked). Amanda keeps no records of wrongs (thinks evil). Amanda does not delight in evil (rejoice in iniquity). Amanda rejoices in truth. Amanda always protects (bears all things). Amanda always trusts (believes all things). Amanda always hopes. Amanda always perseveres (endures). Amanda never fails.

I did a study not to long ago with my youth. My study Bible expounded on this verse a little more for my group:

Love "suffers long" means that God's love has patience with imperfect people.
"Love does not envy" means that real love wants other people to get ahead.
"Love does not parade itself" means that Bible love doesn't put on a big show in order to impress others.
Love "is not puffed up" or "proud" refers to the fact that people who walk in God's love do not have big heads.
Love "does not seek it's own" means that it is not self-centered and selfish but instead looks out fo the needs of others.
Love "is not provoked"; it is not irritable under pressure. Still working on this one!!
Love "thinks no evil" means it doesn't keep a record of wrongs done to it and is constantly forgiving.
Love "does not rejoice in iniquity" and does not rejoice in the mistakes and failures of others. The "God don't like ugly" statement makes my skin crawl.
Love "rejoices in the truth" means that it believes in what is open and hones.
Love "bears all things" is the kind of love that defends and hold other people up.
Love "believes" the best about other people.
Love "hopes all things" means that it never gives up on people.
Love "endures all things" is love that perseveres and is loyal to the end.

When I read this, it made me think of Philippians 4:8, Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of a good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy – meditate on these things.

Have you had a hard time choosing to meditate on these types of things? You know it is a choice. When we choose not to meditate this way about our situation or about people then we choose fear, the opposite of peace. Which means we choose not to love.

Do you know how I know I am not walking in His perfect love? When I do not have His peace. The peace that you can have by taking a nap in a raging storm (Mark 4:37-38).

Do you know how I know I am not walking in His perfect love?

When I do not have His peace.

Philippians 4:6-7 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, with surpasses all understanding will guard our hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Your requests are made known to God, not Facebook, Instagram, Snap Chat, Tik Tok, etc.

Then we do verse 8 (think only on the pure, lovely, virtuous), and verse 9 is our promise: The thing which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.

I have to make a choice in my mind and heart to love. I can walk in peace during the storms. The storm is where my destiny will be revealed, and I want to walk in my destiny! How many, like myself, see an area of the love walk that we can work on? It is okay that we still have work to do. It means that we have a destiny. He created us for good things and He is preparing us just for that (Ephesians 2:10). This mess that I got into will be used one day to lead others to Jesus. Remember love endures all things and is loyal to the end.

1 Corinthians 13:13 And now these three remain, faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.