“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love.” – 1 John 4:16

Waiting in line to pick up the kids from school the other day, I heard a great verse on the radio and I needed the reminder, “God is love.” I looked up the verse and saw this phrase mentioned more than once in this chapter. Another verse stuck out to me, “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” (vs. 18). I needed these words from our God. It also helped me recognize that anytime fear is used as a means of control, it is not from God.

I might have told you this before, but even the word “love” is a big deal to me. When my husband and I started dating, he told me he would never tell me he loved me, unless he was going to back it up with, “Will you marry me?”. There is a commitment that goes with love and he wanted to follow through. There is also security that comes with love and it makes all the difference to ones heart. Fear is not part of the equation in love. And anytime fear is used, recognize it for the weapon it is to manipulate and control behavior, feelings, actions and support for negative. Love has the same effect but for good.

As we go throughout our day, let us be mindful of our words, actions and intake. Run them all through the filter of love. Test them to see if they are rooted in fear or love. You might be surprised. And another measure is found in 1 Corinthians 13:7-8. Real love can make all the difference and we can rely on the love of God, for it is who He is.

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