Published on 12/14/2020
Love Without Fear
Nobody wants to be hurt, but protecting ourselves often prevent us from loving freely and living courageously. Let's face it: love is messy. With its magnified highs and lows, love is unpredictable and never what we expect—so much so that we might be tempted to cower in fear. But if we approach love with the courage of a warrior, we can have relationships of heroic proportions. Here are 10 ways:
1. Be your true self. If we want to be loved for who we truly are, why put on an act? Do you know that you and I are so valuable in God's eyes that He was willing to rescue us, risking the life of His Son Jesus Christ?
2. Don't believe just your side of the story. Our interpretation of events and feelings is, in fact, just one possibility for what is actually true. Focus on what IS to get closer to the truth.
3. Stay open. Fear's favorite pastime is to shut us down. But when we are vulnerable, true connection to others is possible because "there is no fear in love."
4. Speak up. We become silent when instead we desperately want to connect.
5. Stop looking for perfection. More than likely, what we call "high standards" is a mask for our own feelings of inadequacy.
6. Embrace the messiness. It gives us the gift of growth.
7. Allow yourself to feel mad. Learn the difference, though, between expressing anger responsibly and dumping it.
8. Love with no thought of what you'll get in return. This is fearless love in action.
9. Take responsibility. Be accountable for your own emotions, thoughts and actions.
10. Love yourself. Only then can you love others and be loved. Are you living in fear or in love? It might be a good time to find out what you are afraid of and where that story came from.
Even after being married for 13 years, I still did not understand the true meaning of love. When I met Jesus Christ, I finally realized the Truth. "There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love." (1 John 4:18 ESV)
Thank God for what happened one night more than two thousand years ago. In the wilderness of Bethlehem, the angel said to the shepherds: “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord." (Luke 2:10-11)
Author's content used with permission, © Claire Communications
Merry Christmas !
Winnis Chiang, LMFT and founder of ParentingABC.com, is passionate about helping Mandarin- and Cantonese-speaking parents to get along with, enjoy, and positively influence their American born children.