You were the only two ever to know true paradise. What was it like to wake every morning with no fear at all, to go throughout your day with only joy, wonder, beauty, pleasure in your work? What was it like to know your man only in harmony, as your beloved, your best friend?

Till that day things were perfect. What was it like when you made that choice and everything changed in a single instant?

I can imagine the fear, rushing over you in suffocating heaviness, narrowing your vision, crushing you to the ground. You suddenly knew pain, and everything must have become a threat. You suddenly knew you had to protect yourself. You had to hide.

We’ve been scared ever since. Scared is our M.O. Scared is where we live, what forms our thoughts, what drives us. Maybe we’re all scared of different things, and maybe we pretend otherwise, but ultimately we’re all just afraid, hiding in the garden that is no longer paradise.

We forget that everyone else is operating scared, too. I wonder how it would change our interactions to know this?

Scared wants you to think I’m fine. Scared wants control. Scared wants comfort and peace. Scared wants to hide.

Scared wants big answers to terrifying questions. Scared wants to stop hurting, stop losing.

We don’t have the answers to fear, and so fear grows.

But this is what He says: Perfect love casts out fear. Perfect love sits with an enemy and listens. It weeps with the anguish of others. It challenges selfishness and oppression. It washes feet, no matter how deserving. It touches disease and sits with death. And always, always, it points up to a holy God, the only one who truly knows how our fear has shaped us and how to set us free.

Over and over He tells us, “Do not fear.” He never apologizes for being scary, or confusing, or seemingly absent, or too holy for us. He just says, “Don’t be afraid. You can trust Me.”

You can trust Me.

 Because perfect love, while perfect (and therefore scary for us messes), is love. It is utterly for me. It heals. While I journey in the pain, in the dark, in the confusion, perfect love is there, with me, and when I know it fully I will no longer be afraid. I will trust, even while hurting, even while blind, even while overwhelmed.

I am not big enough for all the scary. Not strong enough, or wise enough, or anything enough. But He is. He promises His love is worthy of our trust.

What are you scared of today? What is love asking you to do?

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