Tuesday, October 27, 2009
"'Fear not' is one of Jesus' most frequently repeated phrases. This is because the enemy of our faith is not doubt but fear. Our level of fear is the indication of how little of God's perfect love we have received. No one gets caught up in God's drama for their lives without having to take huge risks. Those who believe they are the beloved move from one risk to the next, not because they expect to always succeed, but because they don't care if they fail. How bad can failure be? They can't lose the love of God.
Since the subtext of being the beloved of God lies beneath so many presenting issues, minor poets can never run out of love sonnets. We have to keep finding new ways of saying the same thing: 'You are the beloved of God.' But it is important that we not become sentimental about this love. The Scripture makes it clear that God chastens and disciplines those who are loved (Rev. 3:19). This is no ordinary lover we have; this one will be impossible to manipulate. It is God who molds us, and sometimes that hurts. Love isn't always easy on us, but it is always our salvation." (M. Craig Barnes, The Pastor as Minor Poet)