The Fear of the LORD

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.”

Proverbs 1:7

I don’t fear God enough. I’ve probably known that to be true, somewhere deep down in my heart, for most of my life.  I cannot really imagine what it will be like to stand before him one day, with the glory all around, and the angels singing his praises. And I know that that is mostly because I am a finite being with a finite brain who can only imagine so much.  But the problem is, I leave that as an excuse, and I don’t pursue the fear of God as I am now convinced that I should.

Since becoming a parent I have read Proverbs at least twice, and I’ve started again. I decided I wanted to do an in depth study on the Proverbs 31 woman, and possibly write about it; but that just led me back to the beginning of Proverbs again to try and get the full picture of what is being said in that book of scripture. And here’s what I have learned; it always comes back to the fear of the LORD.  It is our perspective. It is our lens through which we perceive and interpret our surroundings and the events happening therein.

As a confessed people pleaser/perfectionist, I spent most of my life fearing man and not God. I held in highest esteem the words of other people about me, and the thoughts I had about myself, before tacking on the end, “Yeah, I know that God loves me…” I was not TRUELY embracing the fact that the God of the universe made me, loves me and saved me unto a calling.  I said that I believed it, but I didn’t really.  And when I finally started embracing that truth this past year and a half, it changed everything.  (If you’ve been around my blog for long, you’ll remember the posts.)

I need to get small. I need to stand on a mountain underneath a starry host. I need to dip my toes in the ocean and look out at the seemingly endless expanse of water. I need to study the detail of a flower, and I need a little more fear; a little more awe. It’s in those moments when I feel so overwhelmed by my smallness; my inadequacy, that I hear the Almighty whisper to my soul, “I love you.” And when I know that He loves me, and I know that He is GOD and I am not…that is when peace comes. That is when life become manageable, even in the midst of daily chaos. Those days that I truly walk in the fear of the Lord are the most meaningful and blessed days, even when things don’t go my way; even when I make a mistake that would have previously made me punish myself for my imperfection.

The fear of the LORD is not some insanely jealous demand of an omnipotent being demanding to be worshipped; though God would have every right to demand whatever He wanted of his creation. But rather, I am starting to see that the fear of the LORD is a Daddy giving His children eye glasses, so that they can see the world and their lives in the proper perspective.

That is why, in the book of Job, after Job rails against God, asking Him WHY, God essentially says, “I am God, and you are not.” And it can seem harsh, but not if we know and understand that we were made to live in this fear of the LORD, and that our lives make more sense in the context of it.  We will have more peace when we can submit to the power of His presence. We can rest in His care as we remember just how big He is…and just how small we are.

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