Tuesday, December 7, 2010

"There is no fear in love...perfect love drives out fear." 1 John 4:18

"Have you ever thought about fear as an indulgence that we as Christians can't afford? We often think of rich desserts as indulgences, and they certainly can be. But fear is an indulgence, too--one that Christians engage in at least as much (if not more) than Krispy Kreme donuts. We indulge in fear each time we deny a conflict that exist with a friend--even though we know there is a cancer--like silence between us that Satan is probably filling with his lies. We can indulge in fear when we tell ourselves, "I've had enough, I'm done with this." While walking away looks like some kind of primitive strength, it's often a fear "feast" that results in us putting on weight (in the form of concern and anxious thoughts). When fear keeps us from addressing conflict in our lives, it hinders our intimacy with Christ. We'd rather indulge in fear than delight in the love of Christ; yet, if we'd just delight in Perfect Love, scripture says that fear would flee. Leaving fear behind is a bit like dieting. Standing at the freezer with our hand on the door and the ice cream on the other side, sometimes we just have to say aloud, "No." Standing in a conflict feeling sorely tempted to indulge in denial and flight (both grounded in fear), we must call to mind the lavish love of Christ, drop our hands to our side, and remind ourselves that fear is one indulgence we simply cannot afford." The Peacemaker: A Biblical Guide to Resolving Personal Conflict by Ken Sande

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