What Exactly is “Perfect Love”?

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Fear is the one thing every human being on the planet shares. We’ve all felt it. We all know that dark, encroaching panic that claws at our hearts. peyman-naderi-379104

For years I’ve heard the same pat answer, the same verse over and over until I can quote it verbatim. 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.

Okay, so to get rid of fear, I need perfect love. Got it. But then I’m faced with a scary diagnosis, the bills that keep piling up, rebellious loved ones, and the coffee pot that no longer functions. Suddenly I realize…I have no idea what ‘perfect love’ means.

Oh, I know the Greek word for “drives” or “casts” (as in perfect loves “drives” out fear) has to do with a violent displacement. It means love grabs fear by the throat and throws it through the window. Descriptive. But what exactly is ‘perfect love’? For the sake my sanity and my peace of mind, I must know. 

After a teary therapy appointment for my son, God revealed the beauty of this phrase to me in a very tender way.

We had just left my son’s elementary school after a difficult discussion. His therapists knew something was going on with my joyful little firecracker, but were unable to pinpoint the source of his issues.

“It might be time to test for autism.”

I agreed but as we pulled out of the parking lot, I was overcome with an onslaught of “what ifs”. What would happen to my curious little boy? What kind of life would he have? Would he be bullied for being different? On and on the thoughts tumbled until the icy tentacles squeezing my heart grabbed me by the throat.

“Mommy, sing to Jesus!”

I blinked away the tears blurring my eyes. Peering into the rearview mirror, I watched Nate’s sunny smile and heard his sweet voice as he sang.

“Jesus loves me. Jesus is mine. Jesus loves me. Jesus is mine…” 

I sucked in a breath. Here I was, worrying over things I had no control over and the source of my angst was lifting up praises to Jesus. I pushed down the stinging tears and smiled. “Good idea, buddy. Let’s praise Jesus.”

We sang song after song on the car ride home. With each melody, my fear evaporated. Why? Because fear dissolves in the presence of praise.

The source of our praise, the One we worship is Jesus Christ. Fear cannot exist in His presence. It scatters like darkness shattered by light. Revelation twisted my heart with a surge of joy.

What does the Bible tells us about Jesus? It says repeatedly that He is love. Perfect love.

Perfect love casts out fear.

Suddenly, I understood.

Perfect love is Jesus, God wrapped in human flesh. Perfect Love goes to any length to save and any height to reach. Perfect Love calls the prisoner His brother, redeems him and sets him free. Perfect Love is complete, all consuming, with no traces of doubt in the power of the Holy One. Perfect Love sets a glittering crown on the head of the orphan and calls her “Beloved Daughter”.

I get it now.

I’ll keep my eyes fixed and my heart melded to Jesus. Fear has no chance against such a Love.

My debut novel Engraved on the Heart is available for pre-order now! Check it out! https://www.amazon.com/Engraved-Heart-Tara-Johnson/dp/1496428315/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1522944239&sr=8-1&keywords=engraved+on+the+heart+by+tara+johnsonengraved on the heart cover photo

 

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2 thoughts on “What Exactly is “Perfect Love”?

  1. Loved your post on Perfect Love…As long as we live, it is an on going journey. Each time we think we have it altogether, we face a new mountain that only Jesus can carry us across. It is the hardest when it concerns one of your children, no matter what age. My oldest daughter (16 years older than you are). Is newly divorced, with multiple health problems, and is facing the loss of a job and all her insurance. Recently she has also developed serious eye problems, which complicate her job search and even her ability to drive. One or two of these would be hard to face. The cumulative weight is almost impossible to carry. I am sure that God has a plan, He has always made a way even when there seems to be none…but this is my CHILD…and I want to help so badly, and the waiting for the answers to our prayers seem so long. I am so glad that Nate has such a happy spirit, and is surrounded by so much love. I am sure that his journey may not be easy, but that all of you…and many others will be blessed by it.  I once defined Serenity as   Being able to walk through a minefield blindfolded, with a smile on your face…And mean it!  I also had these comments on Peace:

    Peace does not replace pain. It does serve to make pain bearable.Peace is the absence of panic in the midst of pain and problems. Peace is proof of the power of prayer… A product of the promptings of the Holy Spirit… Security in the permanent protection of the Prince of Peace. The greatest peace is the promise that we are in this time and in this place for a purpose. The primary problem is to exercise the patience necessary to prove it!   8-11-04 I am now trying to live by those words,and place my trust in The One Who Knows. He has plans I cannot see and works in ways I cannot fathom. He has the answers…for all of us. His Peace and Blessings to you, You already have His Love. Linda

    Like

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