Have you ever wondered what it would be like to love fearlessly? By that, I mean to love without the fears of disappointment, betrayal, rejection, or anything else that could hinder or prevent love.
Being open to love is scary because we know that it makes us vulnerable. And we know that people are capable of hurting us if we don’t set up guards—guards that protect us from getting hurt by others, but that can also prevent us from reaching out.
I spend a week every year at a youth camp, helping teens work through the everyday issues of life. And it seems like every year teens seem to be more and more jaded about love, and at younger and younger ages. It breaks my heart to see a person just starting off into adulthood, and their predominant relational characteristic is their cynicism about love. This isn’t right!
It isn’t right for a person to be raised believing that relationships are disposable. It isn’t right for a person to be raised believing that betrayal is their own fault. It isn’t right for a person to be raised thinking that rejection should be expected. It isn’t right for a person to be raised thinking that their value is based upon who they are with. It isn’t right for a person to be raised believing that they are a mistake. It isn’t right for a person to be raised thinking they are anything less than a blessing that enhances their parent’s lives. This isn’t right!
Parents, the Bible tells us that we should not embitter our children (Colossians 3:21, Ephesians 6:4). Our task is not to break them down, but to build them up. Yet too often parents discourage their children from reaching higher, in hopes it will keep them from falling. Too often parents set a poor example making the excuse that our lives are “complicated” and they will understand when they are older. Too often parents punish their kids for their (the parents) own bad choices.
Our task is to love them the way God has loved us so that they might thrive through our encouragement, example, and when needed proper discipline that corrects not defeats. When we do this we create a foundation for our children that allows them to enter adulthood seeking to love without fear. Could it be that first, WE need to learn to love fearlessly?
The Bibles says, “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” (1 John 4:18 NIV). This scripture is about trusting God for His promise of salvation; however, its implications can be applied to our everyday lives. We fear love because we believe the cost may be greater than the gain; and so we hold back—in fear. But if somehow we could know that the gain would always immeasurably outweigh the cost, we would certainly find that we more and more able to love without fear.
Perfect love can only be found in a sanctified relationship with God. If we desire to love fearlessly, and if we desire to empower our children to love fearlessly, then we must, first and foremost, strengthen our relationship with God. The stronger our faith in God, the more fearless our love. The more fearless our love, the more we will empower our children. The more we empower our children, the more they will go out and bring hope to others through their own fearless love.
There are countless problems in our world today that span from sickness to environmental impact. And until we are willing to receive perfect love from God—so that we can love fearlessly—we will spin our wheels and love will continue to degrade generation to generation. Let us be the generation that stops the cycle and seeks His face for the sake of others. Let us be the people that love fearlessly!
Please come join us as we fix our eyes on Jesus. We meet Sundays at 9 a.m. for Sunday school and 10 a.m. for worship. Everyone is welcome!