Deuteronomy 10:12 And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
Deuteronomy 14:23 And before the LORD your God, in the place that he will choose, to make his name dwell there, you shall eat the tithe of your grain, of your wine, and of your oil, and the firstborn of your herd and flock, that you may learn to fear the LORD your God always.
Psalm 34:7,9,11 The angel of the LORD encamps all around those who fear Him, and delivers them. . . Oh fear the LORD, you His saints! There is no want to those who fear Him. . . Come, you children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD.
Psalm 147:11 The LORD takes pleasure in those who fear Him, in those who hope in His mercy.
Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.
Proverbs 2:3-5 if, you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God.
Proverbs 8:13 The fear of the LORD is hatred of evil. Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate.
Proverbs 9:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.
Proverbs 22:4 By humility and the fear of the LORD are riches and honor and life.
Matthew 10:28 And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
2 Corinthians 7:1 Therefore, having these promises beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
I sometimes wish there was another word used to describe being humbled, honoring, and being in awe of God than “fear.” Fear has negative connotations for me.
When I was a child if I messed up, I feared the repercussions, maybe even feared being found out to begin with. I might have mentally pleaded (prayed) that the misdeed would not be found out or at least not reported to my parents. Although I never went to parochial school, we did have nuns who ran our catechism classes, and several (not all) could be unkind, controlling, and intimidating. One priest was lovely and kind and would play a few minutes of kickball with us, but the other spent time doing little except practicing his glare, I think. So, going to that church did make me fearful. We knew we had to respect and adhere to what we were told by these “holy” people; but it did not instill an idea of love, kindness, and protection, which is what my parents would tell us each night as we knelt and said our nightly prayers. God was watching over us and was always there to protect us and love us.
There was a fresco on the ceiling of clouds with Jesus looking down on us and smiling, holding out His hand. I somehow found comfort with that, although many of the human representatives of “Him” brought no sense of relief.
So, I have negative meanings for the word fear, and I can now understand it is not just a terror, a fright, but a respect, an AWE—look at all He created! The world and all in it—each fish and crustacean in the ocean, each dolphin and whale, each mountain, each valley, each star, the sky and all it beholds, and each one of US—each individual. There are no two exactly alike, even identical twins have differences. We are each unique and He keeps track of us. So that is awe, admiration, humbling, glory, reverence, wonder, and worship. I understand how the word ‘fear’ can mean all of that, now as an adult, but I like the words I chose better.
The other reason I don’t like ‘fearing God’ is that when we worry, we are fearful about what may be happening or what we think or anticipate will happen. And then fear mean mistrust, doubting what God has promised when He says He wants good for us, not bad, He will be there, we are not to be doubtful and mistrustful of what He has promised. I understand it is our belief that we are in charge throughout so much of our life that causes the fear to come when we realize we are no longer in charge. We are never really in charge; life can change in a moment, for good or bad. But if we worry and fret about something that is saying loudly that one does not trust God to bring out a good outcome.
I am more than a little amazed at how little I worry nowadays. I used to hold the championship ring, I think for worrying, fretting, and turning issues over and over in my mind. I no longer do.
God has proved Himself to me time and time again. My life goes so much more smoothly—I sleep well, I do the things I commit to, and take care of life and am confident He is with me and will guide me through any issues that come up that are not routine. I no longer borrow things to worry about that ‘maybe’ a problem.
It was normal for me to fret and worry and be all in knots about many things. Looking back, I feel badly for my family—I must have seemed like a maniac at times. It’s a wonder they are all confident, well rounded, and grounded, hard-working people who are happy and in stable relationships.
I no longer live fearfully. He walks with me and guides me each day. I am so very thankful He does as it is a relief to no longer borrow things to worry about, as Matthew 6:25-27 says there is no need to worry and certainly not to borrow things to worry about which may NEVER happen.
Thank You for stepping in and showing me You are always with me, You will always guide my steps, and You have only good things planned for my life, and there is no need to worry. I am so very thankful for all You have done, my Lord, for me and ‘mybellaviews.’