Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.
—1 John 1:18 NLT
The perfect love of Jesus drives out all fear—not just some of your fear but ALL of it. You have no room for the love of Jesus when fear claims your mind. When fear controls you, you have no peace. His perfect love takes second place.
This verse clearly states that if we are afraid, we are fearful of punishment. Believers inundated with fear struggle with thoughts that they deserve punishment. “I can never be good enough—I can never do enough to make up for what I have done—I'm so ashamed that I failed.” You can’t make up for anything you’ve done. Only Jesus can pay that price, and He already has. Where once you deserved punishment, now you are free because Jesus took your punishment for you.
Because of Jesus' love for you on Calvary, you don't need to entertain feelings of guilt and shame. Jesus saw you in your sin, and He died so you would not only be free of it but also the emotions that accompany it. He declared you whole and healed. Jesus died to set you free from the reminders of the enemy that you are in debt to God—that there is something you must do to be in right-standing with Him. You can never be good enough on your own merit, and striving to prove you are is self-defeating! You belong to Jesus! You are in right-standing with God! You can be free from all fear. It is His promise to you. When you choose to believe His truth, His love perfects how you think. You are His passion. His love, which defeats all fear, becomes as natural as breathing.
You received all of Jesus the day you believed in Him by faith. You received His perfect love. For you to grasp this, you have to allow Him to change your perception of who you are. He doesn’t see the failure that plagues you with guilt. He sees you pure and forgiven and righteous. He sees you through the eyes of grace. Until you believe the truth of His grace, you will forever fight the fears which accompany feelings of punishment—of not being good enough.
The love of God was perfected by Jesus on Calvary, when He died for you. You can't develop it within yourself. You allow the Holy Spirit to change what you can't. You face your fears with a decision that He will conquer them for you. You decide that God is not waiting to beat you up because of sin or failure. He loves you with His perfect love.
Keep choosing to believe. The Holy Spirit brings Resurrection power to fulfill it. You will stand against the lies of the enemy. You won't believe negative feelings that rise to condemn you. When you continually grow in the revelation of His grace, perseverance will finish its work so that you will be mature and complete, and not lacking in anything. Each day you will choose faith over fear. His peace and joy will anchor you. His perfect love will flow like a river of living water—refreshing and empowering you. Fear will have no claim on your life.
© 2020 Lynn Lacher