Worthy of My Fear- Five Minute Friday

5-minute-friday-1 There is little in this world that is worthy of our fear.

Yet we hand it over with such ease… sometimes even begging something to claim it from us.

In movies, music, books… “horror” that appears safe in the confines of media, triggering our adrenaline flow. “Scare me!” we cry.

And then fiction becomes reality… the news broadcasts that our fears live in shadows, in alleys, peering in through your windows… waiting to steal your possessions, your money, your loved ones.

And we get security systems, dogs, video cameras, bars, and locks… creating a false sense of control over the darkness that is just waiting to take advantage of us… give us a thrill of fear beyond the boundary of literature and cinematic amusement.

And we hand it over.

Our ability to fear.

And it begins to debilitate us.

We begin to make decisions based on fear. Which streets to drive down. To cross the street when he walks by. To carry weapons. To live with weapons. So that when our turn comes, and the horror lifts from the pages, steps out of the screen, into our lives… we have a fighting chance.

Some people stop going outside altogether. Or flying in airplanes. Or driving in vehicles. They stop eating, start exercising, and take every possible supplement and vaccine to keep the cancer at bay, the heart-attack statistic further from us, or the next “in” disease from staking a claim on us.

As if we have it all under control.

Yet we are the controlled.

Only One is worthy of my fear. Has the right to cause me to be afraid.

His name is Yahweh. The God who Is. The God over all.

Who separated an entire body of water before the very eyes of two nations… split them, so the water made walls and dry land could be passed on.

Who caused the sun to stop moving and prolonged the day.

Who brought dead people back to life… the decaying man restored to health.

Who brought form from the formless, gave it life, and loved it.

Who enshrouded His very essence with flesh, came and lived among us, talked with us, healed us… died for us.

And didn’t stay dead.

To be the eyes and ears of any present for these signs and wonders.

To look out over a plagued Egypt… every body of water: rivers, lakes, ponds, wells, cisterns… puddles. Water turned to blood. To see large hail stones fall on and destroy the flocks, herds, structures of the Egyptians… and yet not hit one single of mine or any other Israelite.

To stand back and say, “Whoa. Truly this is the one true God… and He could smite me so fast…” and yet He doesn’t.

Because the fear He deserves is not the same we cry for in a horror film. We don’t tremble before Him, ever unknowing of our position, afraid His hammer will fall and we will be found out.

I would like to suggest that the Church become a place of terror again; a place where God continually has to tell us, “Fear not”; a place where our relationship with God is not a simple belief or a doctrine or theology, it is God’s burning presence in our lives. I am suggesting that the tame God of relevance be replaced by the God whose very presence shatters our egos into dust, burns our sin into ashes, and strips us naked to reveal the real person within. The Church needs to become a gloriously dangerous place where nothing is safe in God’s presence except us. Nothing–including our plans, our agendas, our priorities, our politics, our money, our security, our comfort, our possessions, our needs.

Our world is… longing to see people whose God is big and holy and frightening and gentle and tender… and ours; a God whose love frightens us into His strong and powerful arms where He longs to whisper those terrifying words, ‘I love you.’

-Mike Yaconelli

This is what makes my heart tremble and cry out… “Can it be? That You would love me?”

The only One worthy of my fear. Worthy of my reverence and respect for His authority, His sovereignty, His power… His self-control and restraint. His deeply pursuant love.

Because “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.,” and as I come to realize the perfect love my God has for me… there is nothing left to fear (1 John 4:18).

I will not be made afraid by anything else.

Do not fear what they fear, and do not dread it. The Lord Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy, he is the one you are to fear, he is the one you are to dread.

Isaiah 8:12-13

The fear of the Lord leads to life; then one rests content, untouched by trouble.

Proverbs 19:23

Introducing… My {Dad}!

Today is day 31!

I almost can’t believe I made it… 31 days of confessing the truth of who I am… that if I am anything good, or gifted, or right… it’s because of my dad.

And where (not if) I am found lacking or wanting… it is to remind me, continually, that I really am no one apart from him and the lessons he teaches me.

So today is the day when I get to introduce you to my dad.

His name is Elohim. And El Shaddai. And Adonai. Also El Olam, Jehova Jireh, and Yahweh.

He is known by all of these and many more.

Moshia’

Hamoshia’

Savior and Deliverer.

Jesus. Yeshua. Salvation.

Yes, this is my dad… father to all who will have him.

You see… my dad… the Creator of all things… looked down upon this creation and saw that we would never be able to live up to the perfect standards of a perfect God.

It was impossible.

Not because He made it so… but because we chose our own way… the very first of us. When given the chance, chose imperfection. Something we’ve been striving against ever since.

In our jobs, in our homes, in our friendships and relationships… always missing the mark and despairing it. Always disappointed with the inadequacies of others and ourselves.

And then we blame dad like it’s his fault.

Even if I had been the first created… I would have failed as well. And if not I, then one of my children. It was bound up in us when we heard the words “freedom” and interpreted it to mean “do what makes you happy, even if it conflicts with what is good for you.” And we fell.

And fall always.

So this dad of mine… taking note of our imperfections and his longing to have us in fellowship with him eternally, devised a plan. Of course, this was a plan he’d held before creation… knowing even then that to offer us “free will” was to set the stage for his own grieved heart and separation.

Sacrifices had been made since the first mistake… animals slaughtered and offered, a blood sacrifice to cover up the error of our ways. But it only lasted as long as the smoke. And then we needed to do it again, and again, and again. And it still wasn’t quite sufficient. Because once the smoke cleared… there we were again… his desperately beloved child on the other side of the prison doors of our own insufficiencies.

And his heart broke.

So he took the piece of himself he’d wrapped in flesh, waiting for this moment, and sent him to live a human life.

Called him Son.

Jesus. Yeshua. Salvation.

Because only God Himself is good enough to pay the debt we owe. Our own lives are the penalty for our wandering ways. And wander we have…

This God-man lived among us, called us friends, spoke the language of humans while living the life of one.

We could hear him and not tremble.

We could see him and not become blind.

We could touch him and still live.

And this deceived many. We expected the prophesied Messiah to come as a warrior… and destroy the known world in our favor.

Instead, he came as a child.

And an Activist. A Doctor. A Coach, Advisor, and friend. A Counselor. An Advocate. A Gardener and lover of all creatures. A Teacher. A Public Speaker. A Healer. A Mediator. Peace.

Savior.

Yes, this God in flesh came to be our final sacrifice.

Knowing that the Deceiver would deceive and we would hate him. Hate him for flipping our world upside down… for not coming as we’d expected. For upstaging us.

For being right.

To the cross he marched, with joy set before him.

Because he knew that he could not be conquered… not even by death.

And he took upon himself all of our inadequacies, insufficiencies, mistakes… our crimes against the world, ourselves, and Him.

He wrapped himself in us… and for a moment, a dad lost sight of his son… and saw only humanity behind a locked prison door of our own doing.

The blood spilled.

The sacrifice was given.

But it wasn’t over.

The thing is… you can’t kill God.

Nietzsche was wrong… God is not dead. (Rest assured that Nietzsche knows his error.)

The price was paid. The debt covered. The blood of our Yeshua, Savior, lasts eternally… beyond the fading smoke of a sacrificial fire. Into the errors yet to be committed. The grievances yet to be filed. It’s already there.

So that when dad looks upon us.. he sees his children… perfected.

Able to cross the threshold of his kingdom, dine at his feast-filled table, and laugh until our tummies hurt.

Forever.

If you want to.

Thing is, you still have that free-will. The chance to join the party or start your own.

The invitation has been sent.

He’ll give you whatever you want… forever. If you want to live an orphaned life… you’ll get to spend it that way eternally.

You want to be adopted by a loving dad… my dad… well, he’s waiting for you in the courtroom. Documents are signed. His oath has been sworn. He’s just waiting for yours.

What are you going to do?

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iNR6zcoLLfs?rel=0]

One of my favorite bands, Downhere… and a great song… take a look! 🙂

  • First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus… (1 Timothy 2:1-5)
  • And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. (Acts 4:12)
  • For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. (Romans 10:10)
  • For in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. (Galatians 3:26)
  • For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. (John 3:16-18)
To learn more about 31 Days in 2012 or view other 31 Dayers blogs, click here.

I’m spending 31 days writing about my confessions and the lessons {Dad} has taught me. This is day 31 of 31 Days in 2012.