FROM FEAR TO LOVE

Is it possible to change FEAR to LOVE? Fear, feat, neat, nest, lest, lost, lose, love. OK, they’re just words, not the real thing. But by making small changes – just one step at a time – it is possible.

Fear is nothing new. “Don’t be afraid!” Jesus repeatedly told his followers. Oh, they were afraid, and often. “Peace is what I leave with you,” Jesus told them before his death. “It is my own peace that I give you. I do not give it as the world does. Don’t be worried and upset; don’t be afraid.”

Jesus spent forty days on earth after the resurrection, then went to his Father. Another ten days elapsed before Pentecost – the promised day when the Spirit of Jesus came to the disciples to be their constant companion, helper, and comforter.

Jesus’ message wasn’t a cosy fob-off. He was a realist. He knew only too well what it was to suffer. He knew his followers would be persecuted. No wonder they were afraid – as are many people today. After Jesus’ death, and even during and after his resurrection appearances, the disciples were so afraid they locked themselves in a room together – away from those who were out to get them. Pentecost, celebrated today, is a reassurance of Christ’s continuing powerful, but peaceful, presence in the world. It is that that today’s followers of Jesus can communicate in an uncertain world. Fear: superseded by love.

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