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Fear in Loving

Keep on loving each other as brothers and sisters. Don’t forget to show hospitality to strangers, for some who have done this have entertained angels without realizing it! Remember those in prison, as if you were there yourself. Remember also those being mistreated, as if you felt their pain in your own bodies.

Don’t love money; be satisfied with what you have. For God has said,

“I will never fail you. I will never abandon you.”

So we can say with confidence,

“The Lord is my helper, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me?”

Hebrews 13:1-3, 5-6 New Living Translation (NLT)

When the Holy Spirit takes up residence in our hearts, we have the Spirit of the Living God to guide us, protect us, and provide for all our needs. David expressed it clearly in Psalm 23:1 "The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want." This gives us freedom from the fear we sometimes experience when doing or giving too much. This also allows us the opportunity to entertain a stranger who may be an angel from God with our benevolence. Authentic hospitality comes from a heart that loves and God calls us to love and share with everyone.

We have a tendency to pick and choose the people we share our lives with. Sometimes the people we choose are not in desperate need of our compassion or hospitality. This means there will be some with an overabundance of love and some others with no love at all. This is not God's way. His love extends to all of us and if we claim to love Him, we have got to love as He does. Jesus laid down His life for us all. He was born in need to show us what "need" actually looks like.

That stranger crossing our path or even knocking at our door could be an angel God has sent to test our hearts. That person in our lives who tries our patience may be God testing our patience. What can being kind and loving toward them possibly do to us but perhaps increase our own blessings through our obedience to the command of God to show them love? We actually could have more to fear in this world by being inhospitable to people we don't know or care about. God's Word says that when we withhold our love from anyone, His love is not in us. Now, that's a very scary thing to try to live with on this planet, isn't it?

We love because he first loved us. Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen. And he has given us this command: Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister. 1 John 4:19-2 NIV

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