Slaves To Fear, Children of God

“I’m no longer a slave to fear. I am a child of God.” – Jonathan and Melissa Helser, “No Longer Slaves”

Why is it? Why are we slaves to fear? We so often get caught up in the “fear” parts of our lives, and we forget the “child of God” parts.

I AM...

I believe we forget we are children of God because we don’t spend nearly enough time in conversation with God the Father. For me personally, the more time I spend in deep conversation with the Father, the more I feel I am His child. And it is true. Fear doesn’t enslave me. The closer I am to the Father, the less fear has a grip on me.

When I was a child, the fear I felt during a storm was lessened when I was near my parents. Didn’t you feel that way too? What do your own children do when they are filled with fear? Think about what happens at night during a storm, or when a child has a nightmare. Where do they go? To whom do they cry out?

They run to the bed of a parent, or they call out for a parent. “MOMMY!!!!!!!!”

I do the same when I’m scared. I suspect you do as well.

But now, as an adult, I don’t run to a parent. I run to the Father. I am His child.

This running though. Is it necessary?

If I’m truly no longer a slave to fear, I shouldn’t have to run to Him. I should have a tight, personal, relationship with Him. A constant conversation and communication if you will.

For me, no longer being a slave to fear means I don’t let fear take hold.

Am I perfect at it? Absolutely not! And I never will be.

But I can certainly improve and strive to be better.

Every day I can be intentional about my time and conversation with God the Father. The more time I spend with Him in deep conversation, the less fear I have in my life.

Trials and struggles will still come. Fear will undoubtedly still creep in at times. Having a tight bond with the Father doesn’t guarantee me complete perfection here on this earth. The elimination of fear will only come in Heaven. But I will daily strive toward that perfection. Reaching and trying is all I can do while here on Earth.

Join me.

“But to all who believe him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn – not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.” – John 1:12-13 (NLT)

 

Intimate Friendship

Kinship In The Age of Social Media

I was challenged a couple of weeks ago to not discuss friendship in the abstract or generically, but to “get into the personal particulars” of true friendship.

Diving deep into friendship can be tough. But let’s do it anyway.

In discussing true intimate friendship, a couple of great examples come immediately to mind. The first being the Apostle Paul and his relationship with Timothy. The second being The Inklings (C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Owen Barfield, Charles Williams).

Wise Circle Alli Worthington

photo credit: Alli Worthington

The word “intimate” is so often attached to a sexual relationship today. I believe it skews our thinking of how deep a relationship can be with the sexual aspect being included.

Here are a couple of definitions from Merriam Webster online.

NOUN
:a very close friend or confidant :  an intimate friend

ADJECTIVE
:having a very close relationship : very warm and friendly : very personal or private : involving sex or sexual relations
As you can see, sex and sexual relations are only a very small part of the definition. I personally love the idea of “confidant” as it relates to an intimate friendship.

The Inklings were certainly confidants of each other. Four men meeting frequently to discuss their ideas and writings. I think most importantly to discuss the ideas and writings they were working on. It is difficult for a writer to share the inner workings of creating a book. Writing is very personal. It comes from the depths of the soul. I believe this is even more valid for fiction writers. Can you imagine the discussion about the worlds created by Tolkien? To share those ideas and help one another flesh out grand ideas, takes true intimacy and trust.

A great resource to learn more about the deep, intimate, relationship of these men, is an incredible blog written by Jamie Lapeyrolerie called Book and Beverages. Jamie has curated a great series on The Inklings.

The other intimate relationship I mention, of Paul and Timothy, can be discussed at length too.

Timothy was Paul’s right hand man. If Paul needed something done, something attended to, Timothy was there for him.

Timothy was such an integral part of Paul’s life at the end, that he essentially called him a son.

Paul wrote two letters to Timothy that became part of the modern-day Bible. That’s how important their relationship was to the kingdom of God. Their intimate relationship was used to spread the Gospel story around the world, then and now.

Paul was in and out of prison during their relationship. In fact, the 2nd letter to Timothy was written from prison.

Paul trusted Timothy to work in the growing population of Christians as his personal mouthpiece. Paul could not travel freely, so he sent Timothy.

How much do you trust your intimate friends? Paul trusted his intimate friend to share the most important message in the history of the world. That’s next level trust.

Do you have anyone this intimate in your life?

Is it possible to have this level of intimacy in our modern-day lives?

Is there anything holding us back from creating these deep levels of intimacy?

I’m currently trying to develop these kinds of relationship with a few people. It isn’t easy. Hard work is involved. But I believe it is worth it.